Why everyone should read Mindy Kaling’s new book

by Sailaja Joshi – Harvard University

Sometime in November, I picked up Mindy Kaling’s new book, Is everyone hanging out without me (and other concerns).  I love Mindy Kaling and since she’s a Boston girl and a Brown Girl, I felt like it was almost my duty to pick up the book, if for nothing more than in an effort to support her.

I must say, I’m pretty glad I picked it up. The book, from start to finish, is hilarious. Mindy does an amazing job of painting a picture of growing up Indian in the United States while making sure that being Indian isn’t the defining quality. She talks about being chubby, a stubborn nerd, and a very un-athletic youth. She talks about her years at Dartmouth (as a cool kid), and then the struggles and triumphs she faced in the world of Hollywood. The book spoke to me in so many ways, because, well I was chubby, a stubborn nerd, and despite my desire to be an athlete, I was far from one (so, so, far from one).

Mindy talks about dating, best friends, the difference between a man and a boy, and most of all, how to be comfortable with yourself. Mindy paints an amazing picture of life we lead as Brown Girls here in the United States.

Now, you’re probably thinking, man is this book only for Indian girls between the ages of 17-35? No way man! I think this book, speaks to pretty much any young women and anyone who has a sense of humor. I can attest to this as when my husband picked up the book, he started laughing after page three. Seriously, he did.

In addition, I think this book makes a great present for any Indian parent who raising an ABCD or Asian-Indian American child. Why you ask? Well, as I said before Mindy, through laughter paints a really relatable picture of what its like growing up as an Asian-Indian American woman. For any parent, especially and Indian parent that perhaps grew up in India, its pretty helpful to have an idea of what the heck you kid might go through.

Also, it probably will give you several cool points if your child should be a young tween or teen.

Basically, I think Mindy’s book deserves rock start status. It’s funny, down to earth, relatable, and most of all doesn’t pretend to give you any advice. Mindy’s tone is, “Hey I did this, it might work for you. If not, cool, keep trying, you’re awesome.” Again, at least I like to think this is what she would say.

And so my friends, that is my review of the lovely Ms. Mindy Kaling’s book. Check out my story about how I met Mindy Kaling, and how she thought my outfit was cool!


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Founded as an online publication in 2008, Brown Girl Magazine is the first-ever multimedia company based in New York City with global reach dedicated to South Asian self-expression, cultural anchoring, and dialogue. Through diverse, multimedia content and community building, we empower and engage those who identify as a part of the South Asian diaspora with a hyphenated identity. We will continue to serve as an anchor for South Asians by remaining steadfast in publishing premium, multimedia content so that it uplifts, creates deeper understanding and connection, and cultivates rich dialogue in communities around the globe.