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  • Writer's pictureChrissy's Books

Here For It; Or, How to Save Your Soul in America: Essays by R. Eric Thomas

Rating: 9/10

I remember seeing this book on Instagram last year and thinking, I must read it! I LOVE the title of the book ‘Here For It’. It’s a phrase I use often with my friends and in general, also how joyous and fun does the cover look too?! I knew it was an LGBTQ+ read as well and that was a plus too. I listened to a sample of the audiobook and heard that it was narrated by the author himself. I liked the sound of his voice too so I finally gave the audiobook a go! Glad that I did too. I have to add that I loved that he was from Baltimore, shout out to B’more!

About ‘Here For It’:

Here For It is a collection of essays by writer and playwright, R. Eric Thomas. In his hysterical and heartfelt essays, Eric redefines what it means to be an "other" through the lens of his own life experience. He explores the two worlds of his childhood: the barren urban landscape where his parents' house was an anomalous bright spot, and the verdant school they sent him to in white suburbia. He writes about struggling to reconcile his Christian identity with his sexuality, about the exhaustion of code-switching in college, accidentally getting famous on the internet (for the wrong reason), and the surreal experience of covering the 2016 election as well as the seismic change that came thereafter.

Ultimately, Eric seeks the answer to the ever more relevant question: Is the future worth it? Why do we bother when everything seems to be getting worse? As the world continues to shift in unpredictable ways, Eric finds the answers to these questions by re-envisioning what "normal" means, and in the powerful alchemy that occurs when you at last place yourself at the center of your own story.

R. Eric Thomas is a long running host of ‘The Moth in Philly & DC’, and he’s a senior staff writer for where he writes ‘Eric Reads the News’, a daily current events and culture column.

My Review:

I remember hearing a lot of positive reviews about this book. Also that it was joyous and uplifting read which is exactly what I was in the mood for. I don’t often listen to Audiobooks but I definitely recommend this audiobook. It was narrated by the author himself. It felt as if he was talking directly to you and telling you all about his experiences and journey. It was an intimate audiobook and truly enjoyed listening to it.

Firstly, I will say that the writing of this book was pretty exceptional. You can definitely tell that Thomas has a way with words seeing as he is a writer. It was written really well and that’s one of the very first features that I always notice about a book. But it also felt very down to earth and not too wordy which I loved!

I definitely had my favorite essays and some that I wasn’t too keen on. But to be honest, I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this whole book. He has such a charming and heartfelt voice and I loved listening to his adventures and tales of how he grew up, navigated into the world, and especially loved hearing about how he actually got to his career choice. I found those parts of the book very fascinating. You just want to hang out with him and have cocktails or brunch with him. He sounds like such a lovely human being.

In the book, he covers his upbringing in a very suburban setting in Baltimore, MD, his uppity suburban Ivy-League college experience, his struggles with his sexuality and religious upbringing, and the dark and unpredictable world that we currently live in as well. This book had a bit of everything mixed in it and I loved it. I really did.

Here For It is about R. Eric Thomas’ upbringing, told in a series of poignant and hilarious essays that tells us how he saw the world differently, finding his own joy in this crazy world. It will be a very relatable read for anyone who has ever felt like an outsider, anyone who has ever felt awkward, anyone in the LGBTQ+ community and general minority group, and anyone looking for a hopeful and joyous book. I really enjoyed it and loved hearing about his journey to self acceptance too. A really funny and sweet memoir.

Song Pick:

This was an easy one! I wanted a joyous song, a song that makes you wanna dance, a song that is uplifting and spreads happiness, a song that absolutely fits this exciting and fun book cover. Also, it helps that the author practically picked out the song for me haha Thomas is a huge fan of this mega star artist. I chose ‘I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)’ by the amazing Whitney Houston. I mean, who doesn’t love this song! Such a banger and I am Here For It!

Genre: Non Fiction | Memoir | LGBTQ+

Pages: 264 Pages

Publication Date: February 18, 2020

Publisher: Penguin Random House


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