Date Published: May 5, 2016
Date Read: January 7-11, 2019
Winter COYER/ BoB 24
Susan Calman is a well known comedian and writer who has appeared on countless radio and television programs. Her solo stand up show, Susan Calman is Convicted, was broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and dealt with subjects like the death penalty, appearance and depression.
The reaction to the show she wrote about mental health was so positive that she wanted to expand on the show and write a more detailed account of surviving when you're the world's most negative person.
The Crab of Hate is the personification of Calman's depression and her version of the notorious Black Dog. A constant companion in her life, the Crab has provided her with the best, and very worst of times. This is a very personal memoir of how, after many years and with a lot of help and talking, she has embraced her dark side and realized that she can be the most joyous sad person you'll ever meet.
There were serious laugh out loud moments in this book, but mostly it was real talk about Calman's struggles with depression, with moments of such repetition that it was a bit of a slog to get through. Hence, this is the only book I read for BoB 24. She avoids the clichéd aspirational sayings and instead goes into the reasons for her to choose cognitive behavioral therapy over talking therapy, and how she navigates the chaotic outside world by controlling so much of what can be in her control. Her writing about her relationship with her wife were just a lesbian version of my relationship with my husband, I swear. While I am glad I now know of Calman and will look forward to her comedy projects in the future, I don't think I will be reading anymore books from her.