Save Yourself: A Memoir

Cameron Esposito. Grand Central, $27 (256p) ISBN 978-1-4555-9143-5
Comedian Esposito, who costarred in and cocreated Starz’s Take My Wife, delivers “the dyke’s tale my younger self needed to read” in this powerful yet often lighthearted memoir of growing up gay in a devout Catholic home. A middle child in a loving Italian household in a Chicago suburb, Esposito was often mistaken for a boy and realized early on that her desires didn’t align with the “proper” gender norms—she asked for Ken dolls rather than Barbies, and recklessly rode her bike. Her Catholic education intensified her discomfort with her body (“Tampons were a years-long struggle, since as a Catholic, you’re not really supposed to root around down there?”) and experimenting with boys as a teenager only underlined her desire for women. Finally, after coming out while a student at Boston College (a Catholic college whose “nondiscrimination policy did not include sexual orientation”) she had an epiphany: “Shit, I think my Catholicism broke.” Esposito is wildly funny and is particularly adept at finding humor in tough moments (when her religious mother asks if she’s gay, there was “a pause so pregnant, it had to be induced and then given a C-section”). This entertaining and candid memoir of finding one’s identity will resonate with readers doing the same. (Mar.)
Reviewed on : 10/09/2019
Release date: 03/01/2020
Genre: Nonfiction
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