Review: ‘How to Ruin Everything’ by George Watsky

If you’re looking for a laugh or a good story to make you think, “How to Ruin Everything” has everything you’re looking for.

From trying to smuggle a narwhal tusk over the Canadian border to accidentally liking baseball, or becoming a rap star at his local middle school, spoken word artist turned rapper George Watsky has lived far from a normal life.

Watsky has recently elaborated on his life from middle school to his current career in his collection of short stories entitled “How to Ruin Everything.”

The collection offers an intimate look into Watsky’s life and events that have shaped him.

It starts with the humorous story “Tusk” in which Watsky and a friend break the law for the first time in an attempt to smuggle a narwhal tusk across the Canadian Border for his friend’s grandmother’s 100th birthday.

The collection quickly changes its tone following with the story “What Year is It?” Watsky describes his personal experience struggling with epilepsy while attempting to maintain his performance career.

“Crying & Baseball” may hit home for those who are more introverted. Watsky recounts his father’s struggle in adulthood to find a new friend, and the toll it took on his whole family. It offers a glimpse into his first days of self-expression and a moving look at “masculinity.”

“Tusk,” “What Year is It?” and “Crying & Baseball” are just a few of the stories in the collection that make this book shine.

Watsky’s voice and style are evident in his writing. His voice effortlessly switches from comedic to serious several times throughout the stories. The clear cadence and style in his writing obviously reflects his experience as a spoken word artist.

Watsky’s ability with words translates perfectly to short stories, and masterfully details the rollercoaster that is young adulthood, so anyone can find something to relate to in this collection.

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