Published: October 20th 2015 by Gallery Books
Number of Pages: 303 Pages (Hardcover)
Pop culture phenomenon, social rights advocate, and the most prominent LGBTQ+ voice on YouTube, Tyler Oakley brings you his first collection of witty, personal, and hilarious essays written in the voice that’s earned him more than 10 million followers across social media. (goodreads.com)
Check him out online!
Check him out online!
“I was taught that being myself was not only okay, but encouraged - and by being unapologetically yourself, you thrive and inspire others to thrive.”
Binge by Tyler Oakley is a honest and intimate look behind the scenes of what we don't get to see each week on YouTube, through tweets or pictures on Instagram. Throughout Binge the reader is guided through all sorts of different stories taken straight from Tyler's life, from childhood stories up until 2015. As always, he is unapologetic about who he is and what he's been through so far in life and isn't afraid to share and talk about many different things, including his father's reaction to him being gay, his eating disorder or the dark time he faced back in 2014.
As someone who watches YouTubers will a burning passion, I can safely say that sometimes you find yourself thinking that these people you watch, that they lead the perfect, happy, successful life free of concerns and problems, because all you get to see are these perfectly edited 3-10 minute videos. Binge proves that there are actual humans behind these videos, that Tyler went through lots of things to be where he is today.
“When life throws a wrench in your plans, catch it and build an IKEA bookshelf.”
I love the fact that, because Tyler himself wrote Binge, his brilliant personality and sense of humor transcends through the pages flawlessly. If you happen to listen to the audiobook, like I did even though I also have a physical copy of it, the fun is even greater because you get to listen to Tyler read you the book.
Binge is very informative and interesting, no matter if you already know him through YouTube or stumbled across the book on accident at the bookstore. There are many things you can learn through the stories Tyler tells, and also through the different themes discussed. Tyler shows that being gay is okay, awesome even, nothing one has to be ashamed of, which I think is something many kids and teens could find useful while they face trying to figure out their sexuality.
Furthermore it also shows that although being a YouTuber might seem like such an easy job from the outside, it's actually just like any other job, too. You still have stress and pressure, the fear of letting people down, of not delivering what others might want to see, that you have to always be better and better, do more and more, even to a point where you just feel exhausted beyond all measures. I think it's amazing that Tyler felt brave enough to talk about this, that being a YouTuber can sometimes even be scary when attending conventions after you reach a certain number of subscribers, which I am quite sure not many people think about.
“Every relationship ends, unless one doesn't. And everything we've learned from the relationships leading up to that last one has been the training we needed to make that final one last.”
As I mentioned before, Binge talks about hard things like Tyler's eating disorder, dark thoughts and even abusive relationships, many things that I'm sure were not easy for him to go back to and discuss in a book for everybody to read. Nonetheless I think it's important and valuable that he did because now, whoever might read Binge, might learn the importance of asking for help, seeking out what makes you unhappy and fixing it, but also that sometimes love isn't enough to excuse another person's behavior toward you.
“Sometimes doing what's right for your conscience is not always the most popular decision, but I can guarantee that in retrospect you won't regret the choice you made.”
But personally, my favorite thing about Binge was the fact that I now feel like I actually know Tyler, despite the fact that I've unfortunately never met him before. Through the way Tyler narrates Binge you feel like you're sitting right next to him over a coffee listening to him tell it to you personally, which is great.
The best things you can take away from this book are such things like the value of taking chances, the importance of pushing beyond our comfort levels, dusting ourselves off after humiliations, and remaining open to the life, feelings and possibilities that are happening while we are busy either chasing success or trying to outrun our fears. Thank you, Tyler.
All in all, Binge is a very honest and apologetic novel showing the reader the world behind the scenes, the real life of Tyler Oakley. The book offers a thick layer of the typical Tyler humor along with very honest stories chronicling his life and experiences offering many lessons to be learned. I think, no matter if you're a fan of his, a casual viewer or someone who has no clue who he is, you can still enjoy this book. It's unapologetic and 100% Tyler Oakley. It will make you laugh out loud, think and relate to him.
I give Binge by Tyler Oakley 5 out of 5 stars.