Not That Kind of Girl

Not That Kind of Girl Summary

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Includes two new essays!


For readers of Nora Ephron, Tina Fey, and David Sedaris, this hilarious, wise, and fiercely candid collection of personal essays establishes Lena Dunham—the acclaimed creator, producer, and star of HBO’s Girls—as one of the most original young talents writing today.

In Not That Kind of Girl, Dunham illuminates the experiences that are part of making one’s way in the world: falling in love, feeling alone, being ten pounds overweight despite eating only health food, having to prove yourself in a room full of men twice your age, finding true love, and most of all, having the guts to believe that your story is one that deserves to be told.
“Take My Virginity (No Really, Take It)” is the account of Dunham’s first time, and how her expectations of sex didn’t quite live up to the actual event (“No floodgate had been opened, no vault of true womanhood unlocked”); “Girls & Jerks” explores her former attraction to less-than-nice guys—guys who had perfected the “dynamic of disrespect” she found so intriguing; “Is This Even Real?” is a meditation on her lifelong obsession with death and dying—what she calls her “genetically predestined morbidity.” And in “I Didn’t F*** Them, but They Yelled at Me,” she imagines the tell-all she will write when she is eighty and past caring, able to reflect honestly on the sexism and condescension she has encountered in Hollywood, where women are “treated like the paper thingies that protect glasses in hotel bathrooms—necessary but infinitely disposable.”
Exuberant, moving, and keenly observed, Not That Kind of Girl is a series of dispatches from the frontlines of the struggle that is growing up. “I’m already predicting my future shame at thinking I had anything to offer you,” Dunham writes. “But if I can take what I’ve learned and make one menial job easier for you, or prevent you from having the kind of sex where you feel you must keep your sneakers on in case you want to run away during the act, then every misstep of mine will have been worthwhile.”

Praise for Not That Kind of Girl
“The gifted Ms. Dunham not only writes with observant precision, but also brings a measure of perspective, nostalgia and an older person’s sort of wisdom to her portrait of her (not all that much) younger self and her world. . . . As acute and heartfelt as it is funny.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
“It’s not Lena Dunham’s candor that makes me gasp. Rather, it’s her writing—which is full of surprises where you least expect them. A fine, subversive book.”—David Sedaris
“This book should be required reading for anyone who thinks they understand the experience of being a young woman in our culture. I thought I knew the author rather well, and I found many (not altogether welcome) surprises.”—Carroll Dunham
“Witty, illuminating, maddening, bracingly bleak . . . [Dunham] is a genuine artist, and a disturber of the order.”The Atlantic

Book Reviews


Dry Humor2 star

I loved ‘Girls’, but I guess I prefer Lena’s humor and artistic style on the screen. I became bored reading it.25

Daughter of the Stars

THEFT. These stories were stolen and exploit children1 star

This needs deleted from itunes. Everything involving evil ugly tranny drug addicts needs deleted. Why is it still available?15

Enjoyer of time sucking

Thank you!5 star

Great read, entertaining, honest, raw and real. Life goal is to be as open and raw as Lena Dunham is in this book.55


Sometimes light, easy read5 star

Dunham is a great writer. I'm very much a fan of hers and this book helped me understand Girls and how her experiences made way into the show. I read this in a couple of days on vacation. Will definitely read her next book!55


So relatable4 star

As a 20 something year old girl, all of these essays really hit home, in both flow and content. One of those books that makes you feel like you're not alone. Really captures the selfishness of youth and the journey of adolescence into adulthood.45


Yes!5 star

I couldn't put it down. So funny! Love her and this amazing book!55


Ummm What??1 star

What the hell was the point of this book? This isn't a book about what she has learned this is a book about every little stupid thought she has ever had which few people can even relate to. Waste of my time and money!!15


Shouldn’t this book be listed in fiction?1 star

If her gigantic gaudy arm tattoo is not evidence enough, the overtly untrue “Raped by a Republican” chapter in this book clearly shows she is one very disturbed person.15


Honest female humor, raw fun.5 star

Praying Lena writes more books. I'm inspired to write but could never create something as humble & fun as this read.55


What just happened?2 star

Very difficult to follow. Would not recommend.25

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