Bossypants by Tina Fey

80%

77 Critic Reviews

Highly recommended, even for those who have already read the excerpts in the New Yorker.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

Before Liz Lemon, before "Weekend Update," before "Sarah Palin," Tina Fey was just a young girl with a dream: a recurring stress dream that she was being chased through a local airport by her middle-school gym teacher. She also had a dream that one day she would be a comedian on TV.

She has seen both these dreams come true.

At last, Tina Fey's story can be told. From her youthful days as a vicious nerd to her tour of duty on Saturday Night Live; from her passionately halfhearted pursuit of physical beauty to her life as a mother eating things off the floor; from her one-sided college romance to her nearly fatal honeymoon -- from the beginning of this paragraph to this final sentence.

Tina Fey reveals all, and proves what we've all suspected: you're no one until someone calls you bossy.

(Includes Special, Never-Before-Solicited Opinions on Breastfeeding, Princesses, Photoshop, the Electoral Process, and Italian Rum Cake!)

 

About Tina Fey

See more books from this Author
Tina Fey lives in Denver with her ferret, Jacoby.
 
Published April 5, 2011 by Reagan Arthur Books. 283 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Humor & Entertainment, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction
Bestseller Status:
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Peak Rank on Apr 24 2011
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Weeks as Bestseller
Bookmark Counts:
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Critic reviews for Bossypants
All: 77 | Positive: 63 | Negative: 14

Kirkus

Excellent
Jul 23 2011

Highly recommended, even for those who have already read the excerpts in the New Yorker.

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Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Carole Cadwalladr on Apr 23 2011

Enjoyable, then, but as a fan girl, I have to say that I do slightly wish she'd stick to the genre she does so superlatively well: television comedy.

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NY Times

Excellent
Reviewed by Janet Maslin on Apr 03 2011

Ms. Fey, like Ms. Ephron, is at her most hilariously self-deprecating when it comes to her attractiveness and vanity.

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Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Carole Cadwalladr on Apr 23 2011

Enjoyable, then, but as a fan girl, I have to say that I do slightly wish she'd stick to the genre she does so superlatively well: television comedy.

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Blog Critics

Good
Reviewed by "...but I digress." on Sep 06 2011

Bossypants is a hilarious look into the life and thoughts of one of our generation’s most revered women and makes it easy to see why Ms. Fey is where she is today.

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Examiner

Above average
Reviewed by Amy Goodfellow Wagner on Mar 11 2012

It's probably not a good idea to read -- or pack-- this book if you've already booked a cruise. Fey's chapter about her disastrous honeymoon cruise to Bermuda will convert anyone into a confirmed landlubber.

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Examiner

Excellent
Reviewed by Lesa Westerfield on Mar 06 2012

. . .overall I thought Fey’s freshman effort as a book author was worthwhile.

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Examiner

Above average
Reviewed by Yumin Ye on Jan 08 2012

If you're a girl, prepare to find your guideposts in life on everything from your body image (in the end, there's always photoshop, right?) to what to say to your friend Gregory who fell off a bike without wearing a helmet.

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Examiner

Excellent
Reviewed by Meghan Graves on Apr 27 2011

I know reviewers use this phrase a lot, but this book truly is laugh out loud funny. As in move to the living room or guest room, lest you wake up your spouse at two am with all of your giggling.

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Examiner

Excellent
Reviewed by Sean Chumley on Apr 27 2011

You'll get exactly what you expect from Bossypants. It's easily the funniest book I've read in years.

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NPR

Excellent
Reviewed by Rachel Syme on Apr 05 2011

Fey's great talent as a writer. . . is that she is fearless but not fearsome, and her charming, no-holds-barred attitude is on full display here.

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NPR

Above average
Reviewed by Janeane Garofalo on Apr 05 2011

Particularly hilarious were the chapters on her honeymoon and having a child...thankfully devoid of hackneyed sentiment.

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NY Journal of Books

Good
Reviewed by Vinton Rafe McCabe on Apr 05 2011

Bossypants’s cover image is...at once an homage to classic comedy and feminist trope. Which is pretty much what you get inside the book as well, right from page one...

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Washington Times

Excellent
Reviewed by Albin Sadar on Aug 12 2011

. . .filled with photocopies of humorous sketches, pointed advice from Lorne Michaels and fun photos. . .is a playful inside-television journey . . .

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National Post

Below average
Reviewed by Chandler Levack on Apr 08 2011

The result is a joke-driven memoir that resonates like a punchline without the setup.

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Globe and Mail

Excellent
Reviewed by Rosemary Couner on Apr 08 2011

It’s Fey’s biting wit. . . that carries her almost effortlessly. . .from drama at the University of Virginia to the Second City stage in Chicago to nailing an interview with Lorne Michaels and working her way up the SNL ladder.

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LA Times

Excellent
Reviewed by Mary McNamara on Apr 04 2011

Fey has a great sense of pace and timing . . .and a love of language that echoes early Nora Ephron and, before that, the marvelous Jean Kerr.

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AV Club

Good
Reviewed by Ellen Wernecke on Apr 28 2011

Embedding her life with a sharp critique of the world that shaped her is painstaking work, but Fey jabs and punches artfully, tempering herself with self-deprecation instead of self-pity.

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The Washington Post

Below average
Reviewed by Nicole Arthur on Apr 11 2011

The life coach in me wants her to knock it off and own her awesomeness. The cynic in me suspects that she does, but she’s too shrewd to let on.

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The Telegraph

Good
Reviewed by VIv Groskop on May 20 2011

No one does traditionally female self-deprecation better than Fey. Not everyone gets it...Bossypants is empirically good.

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The Telegraph

Above average
Reviewed by Tanya Gold on May 06 2011

...it is an evasive memoir starring an absent Tina Fey; it reads like a sketch show, obviously. I’m not actually sure Fey wanted to write it. I think someone stuck a gun made of dollars at her and made her write it.

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USA Today

Excellent
Reviewed by Craig Wilson

It's not every day you read something that makes you laugh out loud every other page.

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Oregon Live

Below average
Reviewed by Kristi Turnquist on Apr 23 2011

. . .one yearns to know more about how she developed the drive and toughness to become the first female head writer at "Saturday Night Live". . .

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Slate

Excellent
Reviewed by Katie Roiphe on Mar 30 2011

. . .it offers a valuable insight into navigating gender politics.

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Tampa Bay Times

Good
Reviewed by Colette Bancroft on Apr 16 2011

Bossypants charts a lot of battles in her career, but it renders them hilarious rather than harrowing. It's a smart tactic that not only keeps readers entertained but makes them feel like the guys on the other side are kind of clueless.

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The Washington Post

Good
Reviewed by Nicole Arthur on Apr 11 2011

At times, it’s almost like Fey and Liz Lemon, the self-loathing comedy writer Fey plays on the show, are struggling, exorcism-style, for control of the book...

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Zimbio

Excellent
Reviewed by Aikiyo Sudan on Aug 13 2013

Tina did a fantastic job of combining comedy + life lessons + writing into one great book! After seeing me rave so much about this book, it is no supprise that I have given the book 5 out of 5 stars.

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Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Below average
Reviewed by Karen Heller on Apr 25 2011

. . .I tired of her constant put-downs about her looks ("my thick virgin eyebrows") while praising the miracle of Photoshop. . .

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About.com Bestsellers

Good
Reviewed by Anna Limber on Sep 23 2013

Given its light tone, this would be great to read on an airplane or anywhere you'd like something fun to help pass the time. All fans of Tina Fey, 30 Rock, or SNL will likely enjoy Bossypants...

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About.com Bestsellers

Good
Reviewed by Anna Limber on Sep 06 2013

All fans of Tina Fey, 30 Rock, or SNL will likely enjoy Bossypants, and if you're not familiar with any of the three, it might be time for you to find out what everyone's raving about!

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Boston.com

Good
Reviewed by Liz Raftery on Apr 09 2011

Comedic timing can be just as important in the written word as it is in verbal delivery, and “Bossypants’’ proves that she has a knack for both.

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Patheos

Good
Reviewed by Nancy French on Dec 14 2011

Mostly, she thinks we’re people who live normal lives and want to laugh on occasion. Don’t read Bossypants for politics. Read it for humor — and appreciate a rare talent at work.

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USA Today

Good
Reviewed by Craig Wilson on Apr 04 2011

Fey's memoir is called Bossypants because she is a bossypants, something she admits right upfront. (It will surprise no one that the girl has a sassy attitude, an attitude that runs through the book.)

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Story Circle Book Reviews

Above average
Reviewed by Olga Livshin on Jul 04 2012

After finishing the book, I haven't gained any real understanding of Tina Fey. Behind the teasing tone and the endless snickers, the author's inner core, her soul, remains an enigma.

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The Young Folks

Good
Reviewed by Luciana Villalba on Jun 22 2011

I have to tell you guys, I did not want to neither put the book down nor finish it so fast. I really enjoyed it, as a Tina Fey fan, I encourage every Fey fan out there to read the book.

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Persephone Magazine

Excellent
Reviewed by Crystal Coleman on Apr 11 2011

...a book that you only put down so that you can go grab your husband or coworker from the other room and make them listen to you read entire pages aloud, knowing full well that you can never impart in your voice exactly why it’s so damn funny to you.

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Journey With Jesus

Good
Reviewed by Dan Clendenin on Sep 23 2013

Maybe Fey will write something more reflective in the future; in the mean time, enjoy her for who she is — a hugely talented and funny cultural icon.

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The Express Tribune

Above average
Reviewed by Ammara Khan on Jun 05 2011

The abundance of parody, exaggeration, and superficiality in the book create the impression of an elusive author who is afraid of saying anything truthful and thus ends up with a part-whimsical and part-conceited narrative.

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The Moderate Voice

Above average
Reviewed by DOUG BURSCH on Jun 13 2011

Regardless of what motivated the writing of Bossypants, the end result is a rather surface level, well intentioned attempt to humor an audience without inconveniencing them with unneeded transparency.

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Arts Sarasota

Good
Reviewed by Susan Rife on Jun 06 2012

Fans of Tina Fey are likely to find "Bossypants" an excellent look behind the stage persona of a well-known entertainer. Others may find it a useful look at the evolution of women in the show business industry over the past 40 years.

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Time Magazine

Excellent
Reviewed by Mary Pols on Apr 04 2011

. . .it's also loaded with personality, insights into power and the kind of humor that can cause beverages to travel through the reader's nasal passages unplanned.

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Reviews St. Louis

Excellent
Reviewed by Amy Noakes on May 30 2011

If there was ever a book for a woman who wants to laugh and relate to, it is this book.

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B***h Media

Good
Reviewed by Kelsey Wallace on Apr 12 2011

If you think you might like a book that contains said frank discussions along with plenty of poop jokes, Bossypants is sure to deliver.

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SQuare Magazine

Good
Reviewed by Kindsay B on Sep 23 2013

Tina Fey’s Bossypants offers all the wonderful perks of reading a celebrity memoir. Even though I wish Tina would have given specific names when she gossiped about fellow SNL cast members, all in all, this is an excellent book!

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Gaelick

Excellent
Reviewed by HAL on Jun 16 2011

Have you ever been stuck on public transport reading a book that is so hilarious, that you try so hard not to laugh out loud, because we all know how annoying it is? Great craic isn’t it?

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Glamour

Excellent
Reviewed by John Ortved on Apr 08 2011

. . .some of the book's most poignant and funny moments come from Fey’s growing up, outside of Philadelphia, as a girl who was not traditionally good looking.

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San Diego Entertainer

Excellent
Reviewed by Carrie King on Jan 25 2011

. . .a fantastic weekend read that entertains while also letting the reader into her world.

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Teen Ink

Excellent
Reviewed by hayden_rme on Sep 24 2013

if you ever decide to read this book you will have to be in the right mind set, in a mood to laugh non-stop. bossypants is one book that you will not want to stop reading even when its two in the morning.

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Yahoo! Voices

Good
Reviewed by Ryan Drew on May 05 2011

Despite the many hilarious stories she writes, you get a real personal touch from Tina. She comes off very real.

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Teen Ink

Good
Reviewed by anastasiag on Sep 23 2013

Fey borrows from her improv and writing background to craft a fast-paced, funny read. Just like her shows, Bossypants is not quite a memoir and not quite a satire – but she still makes it work.

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Booking Mama

Good
Reviewed by Julie P. on Apr 14 2011

As far as the writing goes, I was impressed. The book was extremely easy-to-read (as evidenced by the few hours I spent reading it), and I appreciated Fey's style. Of course her voice was witty, but it was also very smart and insightful.

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http://skrishnasbooks.com

Good
Reviewed by Swapna Krishna on May 22 2011

I can’t say enough great things about this book – it is entertaining, warm, honest, and very witty. Tina Fey is an excellent writer and she has some great messages in Bossypants.

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Devourer of Books

Good
on Jun 06 2011

Fey might not spend an inordinate amount of time or depth on any one topic, but every section of the book is rife with her trademark wit, and she hits every note beautifully, nary a joke falls flat.

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Before It's News

Above average
on Oct 02 2012

I will say I had read several reviews that said Bossypants made the reader laugh out loud, but I didn’t find it that funny. There were some humorous stories and I probably did actually laugh out loud a couple times, but it’s certainly not a book that kept me laughing from beginning to end.

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The Blue Bookcase

Good
Reviewed by Christina on Jun 19 2012

It's hard to make recommendations in the humor department, but if you like the author's showbiz work, there's a good chance you'll dig Bossypants.

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Write Meg

Good
Reviewed by Megan on May 03 2012

Bossypants will be especially intriguing to those who enjoy behind-the-scenes peeks at life in show business — and Fey delivers.

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Nomad Reader

Good
Reviewed by nomadreader on Mar 01 2013

I most respected the way Fey infused feminism with humor; too often feminism is quite serious, but as she does so brilliantly, Fey makes arguments for feminism with wisdom, absurdity and grace.

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Musings of a Bookish Kitty

Excellent
Reviewed by Wendy Runyon on Oct 18 2011

The book is hilarious and I found myself laughing out loud frequently. There were also tender and more serious moments, which I appreciated as well.

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Reading on a Rainy Day

Above average
Reviewed by Athira on Aug 09 2013

Despite how funny she was, I found most of her humor very self-deprecating. Depending on my mood, I find that brand of humor either very entertaining or very depressing.

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Amused by Books

Excellent
on Sep 09 2011

...Fey seems completely humble and down-to-earth. It's hard not to smile reading this book when you aren't laughing out loud.

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She Treads Softly Blog

Good
on Aug 09 2013

Admittedly, Fey didn't delve in deep to her personal life of her deepest thoughts, but that's okay. She shared the information and stories she was comfortable sharing.

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Where Pen Meets Paper

Good
Reviewed by Donovan Richards on May 22 2012

Tina Fey is a brilliant writer, and her memoir reinforces the notion that she is a heavy weight in the current comedy scene. If you want a good laugh and an interesting look into the world of comedy, check out Bossypants.

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Entomology of a Bookworm

Excellent
on Mar 12 2012

Seriously, I can't say enough good things about this book. It's not going to go down in the history books as the greatest memoir of all time, but it will go down in the annals of this year as one of the funniest six hours I've had to date.

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The Literary Life of the Well-Read Wife

Good
Reviewed by MANDYBOLES on May 04 2011

I really enjoyed Bossypants. In fact, I enjoyed it so much I’m going to purchase the hard cover and read it again.

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Patti Smith

Above average
Reviewed by Peppermint Ph.D. on Dec 01 2011

I "liked" this book, and I'm glad I read it. I did have to push myself in the end because I just wanted it done...

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Parental Book Reviews

Above average
on Aug 12 2013

There were occasional moments when a joke would have probably been better delivered aloud, but on the whole, Bossypants was a real pleasure to read.

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Books in the City

Excellent
Reviewed by Colleen on Sep 14 2012

...Tina has worked very hard in a male dominated field to achieve what she has and it was by no means arrived at through pure luck. If you are looking for intelligent, witty and laugh out loud funny, pick up Bossypants...

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SamDowning.com

Good
on Jan 14 2012

There is a genuine sense of her personality revealed in Bossypants, but there’s also a sense of the “real-life” Tina Fey lurking off the page...

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The Garden of Books

Excellent
Reviewed by Lisa on Oct 23 2012

Bossypants is a very entertaining read filled with not only laugh-out-loud moments but also the startlingly truth that comes from when one examines who they really are and the experiences that lead them there.

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What I Read and What I Thought

Good
Reviewed by TG on Feb 12 2012

Although Bossypants is mostly fun and light, I think what tips it over from like into love for me is how feminist it is. Fey doesn’t preach at all, but she’s a smart cookie and makes a lot of observations about society’s attitude towards women, that are as seriously on point as they are witty.

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Home Between Pages

Good
Reviewed by Rachel on Jun 17 2011

Summer reading tends to mean lots of things to lots of people, and for those people who think summer is the perfect opportunity to read War and Peace, more power to you. For everyone else, this is a great multi-situational read.

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Relevant

Good
Reviewed by DIANNA ANDERSON on May 23 2011

Overall, Tina Fey’s Bossypants is a good read and a great window into the life of a realistic feminist—a woman who is a capable and successful career woman and a loving person.

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Overflowing Heart Reviews

Good
on Apr 16 2011

...I’m going to be upfront in telling you that Bossypants is pretty much the funniest thing I’ve ever read. In my life. And I’ve read a lot of books...

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Bob Burg

Excellent
Reviewed by Bob Burg on Jul 09 2013

Whether just for some continuous, Fey-induced laughs or to learn some really important lessons on life, leadership and success; whether for you or for the women in your life, this is a book to buy and read.

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Dorolerium

Above average
on Apr 28 2013

As is the case with a lot of these types of books, if you like the comedic style of the author, you’re probably more likely to enjoy the book. So if you’re into Tina Fey, or think you might be, go pick the book up!

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Mint Tea and a Good Book

Good
Reviewed by Erin on Jan 26 2013

Bossypants is funny, relatable, and empowering. Read it today, tomorrow, in a year, or whenever (look at me being bossy).

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The Canary Review.

Good
Reviewed by CanaryTheFirst on Aug 06 2011

...Bossypants is presented as a memoir, but the book is best approached as a collection of chapters and commentary, only loosely connected by Fey’s themes from her childhood to now. In fact, that’s one of the thing I ended up enjoying immensely.

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Reader Rating for Bossypants
84%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 7592 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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Brian Lee Kloosterman Jr. 17 Feb 2013

Rated the book as 3.5 out of 5

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Katrina Bernardo 18 Mar 2013

Rated the book as 3.5 out of 5

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