ComedyThe Audacity by Katherine Ryan

The Audacity by Katherine Ryan


I truly didn’t know what to expect when I opened The Audacity from publishers @bonnierbooks_uk . Katherine Ryan is known globally for her confident comedy, starring in all manner of tv comedy, stand up panel shows and The Duchess on Netflix. I thought maybe this will make me laugh, or be a light easy read.

This autobiography/memoir begins in Canada, with short punchy chapters that have funny How To titles. With a few laugh out loud moments there wasn’t much to report until we get to the teenage years. This is where the book transforms into an eye opening, thought provoking exposition on how society deals with confident, head strong women, with a fascinating insight into the comedy sector.

I was truly shocked at how much I loved this book, I read it in two sittings today. It is a feminist manifesto of sorts, @kathbum is urging women not to be a people pleaser, not to accept the status quo or uncomfortable situations because of fear or shame. I would like to bottle this message and send it to every teen who has ever been scared of being themselves. Her chapters on being a single mother, of staying in a frankly horrifying relationship because of the perceptions society has were utterly persuasive and compelling.

Here is a woman who is unabashedly audacious, who writes with wit and assurance on the industry she loves. I found this at times hilarious, like a bloody good night out with friends, at other points inspiring (how cliche). The passages on the harassment female comics face, the issues all women have to contend with regarding fertility and work were beautifully drafted and fiercely honest. She is an erudite, personable writer and her narrative voice was strong. 

The stand out chapters for me related to stepping away from toxic family members, alcoholism, celebrity culture and how we as a society have changed our views on plastic surgery, which were so fast paced and astute I had to stop and go back to fully absorb. I loved this. Thank you so much for sending us a copy.

~ Chaya

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