…on Bossypants by Tina Fey {Audiobook & Print}

Posted November 25, 2012 by Asheley in Uncategorized / 15 Comments

Bossypants by Tina Fey
Published by Reagan Arthur Books/ Little, Brown & Company
Publish Date: April 5, 2011
288 Pages
Source:  Print – Library, Audio – Library

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. –(summary excerpt from Goodreads)

Bossypants by Tina Fey

My Thoughts:  I’ve wanted to read this book for a long time. My first attempt to read the print version was a failure. I just couldn’t get into it. BUMMER, DUDE. Since I’m always awesome (y’all can laugh at that), I decided not to give up on Tina Fey. Here is that story.

The first thing you need to know is this:
I allowed myself to break one of my own quirky rules.  

I checked out the Bossypants audiobook from the library and the print copy of Bossypants and read/listened simultaneously. 

“But Asheley! Isn’t that what you always do for audiobooks?”  YES IT IS, and thank you for noticing! But the oddball thing about this is that since I didn’t make it through the print version on the first go, I listened to the audiobook for my first reading. WHAT?! I know. Settle down, friends.

This is only the second time in the history of my world EVER that I’ve done this. It felt a little weird and clunky for me, but it was completely and totally the right decision. Why? Because I actually made it through the book this time, and quite easily. That was my goal, after all. So YAY for me! 

The second thing you need to know is this:
Tina Fey has A LOT of really big fans.
On the scale of really big Tina Fey fans…well, I’m not really on that scale…

Now before you all go yelling and screaming at me about how awesome and wonderfully funny Tina Fey is, hear me when I say: I KNOW. That’s why I wanted to read this book. What I mean is that I don’t follow her every move and I do not think that her show 30 Rock is funny.


I am a HUGE, RAGING, CANNOT-GET-ENOUGH fan of Saturday Night Live. As in, I’ve watched it for as many years as some of you have been reading. I’m not kidding. When I was a Senior in High School, my senior project in English was a bunch of literature-stuff made into SNL sketches that were popular at that time. I’M A FAN, you guys. Since Tina Fey is such a big deal to that show (HELLO, BUTT-KICKING FEMALE PLAYER/WRITER), I wanted to read this book. 

She really is insanely funny on SNL. I just can’t dig the 30 Rock sitcom. Sorry to all you superfans out there. 

The third thing you need to know is this:
I loved the heck out of this audiobook, even on the first read.
Hearing this audiobook as a first-read was absolutely the right decision for me in this instance. As always, I had the print copy always at my side while I was listening because that is how I do audiobooks. Where I could not make myself get through the print copy of this book on the first go-round, hearing Tina Fey read it to me was like hearing five-plus hours of really great comedy. 

Tina Fey is a funny person already, but when she is narrating her own words – well, she doesn’t have to interpret the story of someone else, which is basically what an audiobook narrator does every time they read. She knows where her own jokes are, where to put the emphasis in her lines, where to pause, where to get a little loud, where to do voice impressions, etc. She basically narrated her own book perfectly. In fact, I think she would do well to read other audiobooks (as if she isn’t busy enough with all she has going on already). 

I found myself laughing out loud as I did things around my house or drove around in my car or shopped at Target. I didn’t even mind that one time when someone stopped me at Target (with my earbuds in – RUDE!) to ask me what I was listening to that was so funny – I had the opportunity to tell them about this book and the audiobook (and seriously, I don’t think this lady had ever heard of an audiobook before, which is a story for another time, folks). 


To wrap this thing up, Bossypants by Tina Fey is a win. I’m so glad I hung out on the wait-list at the library for BOTH the print copy and the audio copy AGAIN. I’m also glad that I let loose a little bit and decided to listen for the first read because had I not, I’d have missed out on some serious funny times. Tina Fey is hilarious, even when she is writing stuff that is not supposed to be funny. She’s just one of those lucky people that is funny all the time, and I think that is so awesome. How generous of her to share that with the rest of the world. 

The slowest parts of the book to me are the parts in the beginning – the parts of her childhood and schooltime and college. (Obviously, since I couldn’t get through them in print…) However, listening to her read them to me made them go a little quicker and I still found them humorous. In all honesty, the book kicked up for me when Tina began talking about her job with Saturday Night Live and the transition over to 30 Rock. I loved these parts because I am ridiculously fascinated with every aspect of SNL and I loved hearing of all of the actors/musicians/politicians she worked with over her years there. I loved hearing of her interaction with Lorne Michaels, Executive Producer of SNL. I loved hearing her tell of her moments – both awkward and momentous – of starting up 30 Rock, even though I do not particularly love that TV show. She made every part funny and exciting for me to hear/read.

There are other things about the book that I love. These are sprinkled throughout, perfectly placed. Tina includes her thoughts on the use of photoshop in media (laughed out loud), beauty rituals of women (laughed out loud), working mothers vs. stay at home mothers (laughed out loud and read twice), and breastfeeding vs. formula-feeding babies (laughed out loud). There are a bazillion more hilarious parts, but this blog post would be too long if I listed them all. 

THE BEST PART BY FAR to me was hearing Tina Fey talk about the time she spent impersonating Sarah Palin on SNL. I loved hearing about her excitement about it and her nervousness while doing it. (Apparently famous people get nervous too? Who would’ve thought?) The audiobook included the sound recording of the first Tina-as-Sarah-Palin sketch; I remember watching that on TV and laughing so hard because Tina did such a great impression of Palin. This time, hearing the audiobook, I laughed out loud all over again. The print copy of the book included the script of this same sketch with Tina’s notes scribbled in the margins, the deleted lines marked through, and added lines written in. (Reading and listening meant that I was privy to BOTH of these gems. My SNL-loving heart geeked out so hard.)

Bossypants by Tina Fey audio is also read by Tina Fey and is published by Hachette Audio. It is 5 hours, 35 minutes, Unabridged. If you haven’t figured it out by now, the narration is top-notch and hilarious. NO OTHER PERSON could’ve done a better job at reading this particular book than its own author, and I would not hesitate to listen to another audiobook read by Tina Fey in the future. 

I recommend Bossypants to people who enjoy non-fiction/biographies/memoirs, funny books, and fans of Tina Fey or Saturday Night Live. It is not a very long book – a quick read – and the audio is also pretty short. I cannot imagine any disappointment with this one, you guys. 


Bossypants will appeal to fans of:

Tina Fey, Saturday Night Live, 30 Rock

Bossypants by Tina Fey

is currently available for purchase.


Have you read/heard BOSSYPANTS?
What did you think? Or is it on your to-read list?

Also, do you have a favorite memoir?
Recommend some! I love them.


About Asheley

Asheley is a Southern girl. She loves Carolina blue skies, Ben & Jerry's ice cream, and NC craft beer. She loves all things history but prefers books over everything.

You can find her somewhere in North Carolina, daydreaming about the ocean.

Find Asheley on Litsy @intothehallofbooks!


15 responses to “…on Bossypants by Tina Fey {Audiobook & Print}

  1. I haven't done the print version of this one either. But I've listened to the audiobook…twice! So great and just as good on the second listen. Loved all the parts you talked about and the honeymoon story. Hilarious. When people say they didn't love the print version I always tell them to try the audiobook. Fey reading her own story was ever so much more personal and funny. Loved.

    • Yeah, I actually read it because of you. I tried the first time to get thru it in print but just couldn't fast enough and had to turn it back in. So the second time I went all BEAST and did it both audio and print.

      IT ROCKED.

  2. Okkk I'm definitely getting this on audio! I've heard such good things about it but it sounds like the perfect thing to listen to while working out. Let's just hope I don't laugh so much I don't fall off the treadmill or anything. I WILL SUE YOU FOR YOUR CONVINCING REVIEW 😛

    • Bahahaha!

      I plan to do the Mindy Kaling book soon! I've heard it is pretty funny and not too long. I have the audio already but as soon as the book comes in from the library – it's a done deal! I love to laugh with a good audio. Sometimes it breaks up the heavier, lovelier ones.

  3. Ok. So normally I don't do memoirs. I've tried. REALLY. But most of the time they BORE ME TO TEARS. Even interesting people's memoirs bore me to tears. So even though I also am a HUGE SNL fan and love Tina Fey's films (I don't watch 30 Rock either,even though Alec Baldwin is on it too (LOVE HIM) I just don't watch much TV these days period.) and I have seen this book everywhere (with that rather unforgettable cover)I just couldn't get past the whole fact that it is a MEMOIR.

    But. I never thought about trying out the audio book version. Hmmm. I can see the appeal, especially when you say it is like listening to a comedy routine for 5 hours. I used to waitress and bartend in a comedy club back in the 90's, did I ever tell you that? Anyway, BESTEST most fun job I ever, ever had. Ever. So now I may just have to try this Bossypants audiobook out:)

    Thanks for the heads up, Asheley!

    • Yes, I would go for the audio. The book was just not happening for me and I actually like memoirs a lot. But I just couldn't…until I paired it with the hilarious audiobook. AND it's only something like 5.5 hours, which isn't that bad.

      I'm planning on listening to the Mindy Kaling book next because she's pretty funny and she reads her own book – but once again I'm waiting for the book to come in from the library. I think that audio is pretty short too! I've heard great things about the book, but if it is funny, I really want to laugh out loud and I think I can do that better if they read their own stories.

      But, yeah, I love memoirs…although I can't spend TOO much time on them. I've read Bear Grylls, Scott Weiland, and Johnny Weir fairly recently. Loved them. Just one every now and then on some pop culture person I love to cought*staywellrounded*cough. Haha

  4. I'm not huge on memoirs, but if I'm going to read them, I will usually only do so if a) it's on audio and b) that audio is read by the author. Which means that this one actually has a fair chance of making it to my ears someday. I'm not a huge Tina Fey fan either. I mean, I like her, I have nothing against her, but MEH. Still, reading that you feel more or less the same (though I'm less SNL and I really liked at least a couple of seasons of 30 Rock) ,and thought this was hilarious and fun is a pretty great recommendation for me. I'm so proud of you for breaking your own rule–and it worked!

    • YAY for me! I mean, I don't want to convert over to a audio-on-the-first-reading person just yet (or maybe ever) but it was the way to go for sure in this instance…and I plan on doing the same thing for the Mindy Kaling book, which she also reads herself…as soon as the print copy comes in from the library. I already have the audio.

      BTW…the Gaiman's are the best of the authors-reading-themselves. For-eva.

  5. My husband bought this in print but hasn't read it yet. However, I'm thinking I'm going to see if my library has it on audiobook because I think Ms. Fey is hilarious and I could see me getting a lot more from her reading of it than I would from my own. Plus I bet it would be fun for my commute haha. Great review, Asheley!

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