I recently had the opportunity to read Wonderfully Dysfunctional: It Must Be Genetic by Buffi Neal. I read the book in about three days because I just loved it. In so many ways, this is my kind of book.
It’s a memoir about Buffi and her family as they navigate a strange and difficult time in their lives, as her grandmother gets ill and passes away, some skeletons come out of the family closet. Buffi spent her youth trying to convince herself that she had – or at least could, escape the dysfunction that seemed to follow the rest of her family around. She longs for normal, but at the same time a big piece of her aches to just be who she is. In many ways, the death of her grandmother and the other events surrounding that time in her life open her eyes to who she is and who her family is, which helps her find a balance between striving to be normal and accepting who she is.
While I’m younger and at a different part of my life than Buffi is in her memoir, I was drawn into this book because I too, feel the pull between trying to be normal, trying to be accepted by my family and peers, and being who I naturally am. Yet, I think the main reason why I connected with this book comes down to the way it is written. At least for me, Buffi’s writing style does such a great job of placing you directly into her mind and thought processes, and she thinks and reacts so similar to the way that I think and act, that I felt like I was right inside of her head. Or maybe her story worked it’s way into my head, I’m not sure which. I had never come into contact with a book that is written the way that I think, so I was impressed and intrigued by this. The writing style also made it easy to get lost reading this book, as it makes it such an easy read. While parts of Wonderfully Dysfunctional are quite sad, there is genuine humor mixed in, and I even laughed out loud a few times.
I enjoyed it right up to the end. I know this sounds rather negative, but so many memoirs or other books that deal with self discovery seem to end with a huge epiphany that fixes everything and the world is perfect and they lived happily ever after. I really, really don’t like when books do that because it just feels so fake to me most of the time. While the book does end on a positive note, it doesn’t feel like an exaggerated or over dramatized ending that was “polished” by the author just so that an ending could be created.
Buffi’s Amazon page says she’s working on a part 2 for this book and I’ll absolutely be in line to read it or any other books that she publishes because I enjoyed this book so much.
Buy it: You can purchase wonderfully dysfunctional on Amazon. The kindle edition is $9.99 and the paperback version is $12.99.
Win it: One super lucky person will win a $50 Amazon gift card!
To enter: Fill out the GT form below before 11:59pm EST on 2/8/2013. This giveaway is open worldwide.