I’ve been watching iiSuperwomanii’s/Lilly Singh’s YouTube videos since my high school days and they have helped me smile and feel better through thick and thin. I was pretty elated to hear that she would be releasing a book, How to be a Bawse: A Guide to Conquering Life, and since my birthday was around the corner then, I dropped some hints to a friend to get me a copy as a gift.
While I’m a pretty slow reader and have only recently finished the book, I decided I would still share my thoughts about the book and whether I recommend it.
What is Bawse book?
How to be a Bawse: A Guide to Conquering Life is a book written by YouTube star, comedian and actress Lilly Singh that helps readers become a Bawse – “a person who exudes confidence, reaches goals, gets hurt efficiently, and smiles genuinely because they’ve fought through it all and made it out the other side. Told in her hilarious, bold voice that’s inspired over 9 million fans, and using stories from her own life to illustrate her message, Lilly proves that there are no short-cuts to success. Warning- This book does not include hopeful thoughts, lucky charms, and cute quotes. That’s because success, happiness and everything else you want in life needs to be fought for – not wished for. In Lilly’s world, there are no escalators. Only stairs.” Source
I was pretty surprised when I received the book. It was a little different than how I’d imagined it would be. For starters, it was much heavier than I’d thought it would be, since the pages were so thick and felt of good quality.
For some reason, I’d thought it would be a regular book mainly full of words, but the book had a much more editorial or magazine-like feel to it. The book consisted of 50 chapters, each with its own decorative cover page with Lilly posing in different outfits, representing different situations. The book is very visual and colourful, plastered with different fonts, patterns and pictures and definitely does not look boring at all.
At the end of each section of the book, a section called ‘Out of the Blue’ is included in which Lilly compares her situation then, to how it is now, including her new found happiness and confidence.
What I liked
I really liked how authentic the writing is. While I was reading the book, I could literally hear Lilly’s voice speaking out in my mind. Bawse book is full of the jargon, sass, wittiness and pop culture references that Lilly commonly uses in her videos and therefore feels very real and natural to the reader.
Lilly is very honest in her book, sometimes to the point of bluntness, which I appreciated since it helped throw light on some things I needed to call myself out on in my own life to improve myself. She does not try to sugar coat things but shares a very important message to readers that success does not come easy, but requires hard work and determination.
I have never really been one to read self-help books, but Bawse book made the experience quite enjoyable. It is certainly a very unique book and screams ‘Superwoman’ like nothing else.
Each chapter or piece of advice is backed up by some very good examples from Lilly’s real life experiences and let’s readers see another side of her. I also liked how tangible steps are outlined in the book so readers are encouraged to take steps to apply the advice in their own life.
What I didn’t like
Although the advice in the book is quite good and well-meaning, it isn’t exactly ground-breaking or completely unprecedented. You’ve probably heard the advice somewhere or other through school, parents, other books or common sayings, but just reworded differently. I wouldn’t exactly say that the advice Lilly gives is generic or unhelpful, but it certainly isn’t completely new.
Another thing I noticed is that the book tends to cater to younger audiences. While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it might be hard for an older reader to understand all of the jargon or language used in the book.
The chapters of the book are quite short. This could actually go both ways, since its good that the book is concise and gets straight to the point, but it leaves the reader feeling like the advice given is not as adequate as it cold have been. It feels almost as though the chapters of the book are finished as soon as they started and not very much elaboration is given.
While the book is by no means cheap for flimsy feeling, I did have an issue with the spine and the binding of the book. While reading the beginning of the book, the first few pages started to come apart off the rest of the book! The rest of the book is still intact, but it just means that a few pages are loose. I haven’t heard of anyone else having this issue, so it may have just been a slight issue with the spine of my book.
The book also tends to have very rough edges and is heavy. While this has not been a massive issue, I am worried that the rough edges of the book might be a slight paper hazard.
I did genuinely enjoy reading Bawse book and found it helpful overall. I think the book is a good choice for any reader, but especially fans of Lilly and those who want to take tangible steps to improve themselves. The book did have some faults here and there, but I really appreciate the effort that Lilly has put into the making of her book and would probably rate it a 7.5/10.
Have you read Bawse book or do you plan to read it? What are your thoughts and impressions of the book?