by Felicia Day
Hardcover, 258 pg.
Read: November 2, 2015
There is, a certain degree of difficulty in evaluating a memoir or autobiography, you can’t really critique the plot — “I just didn’t find the protagonist all that believable here,” “sure, things like that just happen…” You’re limited to writing ability/style and what’s contained in the volume (or what’s left out).
So let me start with my minor gripe: I’d have liked a little more information on The Guild — what we got was great, but we barely got any information/impressions on her castmates, the stories, anything beyond the process of getting the first episodes made and then securing the means to make the rest. Even more, I’d have loved more about her work on Buffy, Dr. Horrible, Eureka, and Supernatural which barely got a mention. I get that the book isn’t about that kind of thing — and I can appreciate that. But, I’d have liked to see that kind of thing (and I expect I’m not alone).
So what is the book about? It’s about Felicia Day — how the things in her life made her who she is. So yes, there’s a lot about The Guild, and what the process of making it did to her. Not too much about the other projects, sadly. But while reading it, I didn’t give it much thought beyond muttering to myself, “Oh, come on, we’re just skipping ____?”
Weighed against all the things about this book that really work, that’s really minor (but apparently takes me two paragraphs to explain). If you’re a fan of Felicia Day’s, you know that persona she’s established (I’m not saying it’s not primarily genuine, but she’s careful to keep it consistent). That persona shines forth in every sentence in this book. It’s hard, really hard not to hear Day’s voice in your head as you read this — at a certain point, I stopped trying because why should I? It’s fun hearing things in her voice — most of her readers are reading the book because they enjoy her — that’s why they got the book.
She talks about her mother’s unique approach to homeschooling (“for hippie reasons, not God reasons”), the various and sundry artistic endeavors she tried as a kid/teen — singing, dancing, acting, violin, and more, her college experience, her early acting days, discovering her writing/producing/creative mojo — and most importantly, discovering video games and the Internet.
This, and more, told in her indelible, inimitable, charming style, makes this book a winner — and a real laugh-out-loud read. Also, this book is noteworthy for the most mentions of Ross Perot in any book I’ve read this century. That really has nothing to do with anything, but it’s such strange distinguishing mark, I felt it had to be mentioned.