Almost Adulting by Arden Rose

by - October 17, 2017

For fans of Grace Helbig and Alexa Chung comes a fresh, hilarious guide to growing up your way from social media influencer and lifestyle vlogger Arden Rose.

In Almost Adulting — perfect for budding adults, failing adults, and eaters of microwave mug brownies — Arden tells you how to survive your future adulthood. Topics include:

-Making internet friends who are cool and not murderers

-Flirting with someone in a way to make them think you are cool and not a murderer

-Being in an actual relationship where you talk about your feelings in a healthy manner??? To the other person???????

-Eating enough protein

-Assembling a somewhat acceptable adult wardrobe when you have zero dollars

-Going on adventures without starting to smell

-How sex is supposed to feel, but, like, actually though

By the end of the book — a mash-up of essays, lists, and artwork — you'll have learned not only how to dress yourself, how to travel alone, how to talk to strangers online, and how to date strangers (in PERSON!), but also how to pass as a real, functioning, appropriately socialized adult. 


Here's the thing... I don't like self-help books. 

I'm not hating on the entire genre, especially since I have literally seen people change because of these helpful books. But, we're all different and these books just aren't for me. That being said, this opening statement doesn't mean I didn't enjoy this quirky little gem - specifically designed for young adults approaching the big 'grown up' stage. I was surprised by how fast I sped through Almost Adulting, blaming it on the easy style of writing and relatable stories. Made up of essays, list and funny little drawings, this successfully grabbed my attention for a solid few hours. 

Arden tackles many issues plaguing young adults today, including body image, mental health and sex. She doesn't have any medical degree behind her that could back everything she's saying. Instead, the famous YouTuber relies on her own experiences to deliver wisdom. I appreciated her attempt at discussing mental illness, especially now that the world is evolving and the stigma surrounding these illnesses are still staying firm. Relating to her battles and reading about how she came out of that dark time helps anyone realize that there is a way to overcome your struggles. These heavy topics, which could place anyone in a dark mood for hours, were delivered in a funny way that helped lighten the mood and place you in great spirits. 

"Just do whatever it is that you’re second-guessing. Unless the thing you are contemplating doing is meth. Don’t do meth.” 

Even though I laughed, had multiple "that's so me" moments and applauded Arden for her blatant honesty when it came to sex, I don't regard this as a self-help book. I would call this a memoir instead, something that Arden's fans could appreciate more. The book mostly revolved around Arden telling us about HER life and what SHE experienced. She then tells you what she thinks you should take from her stories but as soon as you start to understand what she's trying to say... she ends it off with 'but you do you'. There were so many contradictions within her writing. At one point she would give you advice and tell you what to never do but she'll turn around real quick and sort of wash her hands clean by saying something around the lines of 'it's your life, so make your own choices'. 

I also felt like this book was a love letter to her boyfriend Will, another YouTube sensation apparently. She documents their everyday life, how they met and all the little cute things they do together. I'm all for love but there were times she unnecessarily dragged Will into a chapter that had nothing to do with him. These would usually be about how having him saved her and he helped her through her hard times and his so supported and and and... But, here is my issue: what about the girls that don't have a Will? There are a lot of girls that could read this book and think that they need a guy to save them and help them through a tough time. If you're going to write a self-help book then you need to teach somehow how they can survive without the aid of a boyfriend/girlfriend. 

These minor issues bugged me but I still had a great time reading this book. Her personality bounced off every page, making the book personal in many ways. I enjoyed her kind wisdom and the issues she addressed are part of the stark reality we have all come to know as 'normal'. She taught me new ways to address mental illness and encouraged me to judge less. During October, also known as Mental Awareness Month, I want to spread this advice and inspire all my readers to educate yourself on the various illnesses. Not only for yourself, but for your friends, family, co-workers and neighbours. 

- Tina 

Book was sent to me by Jonathan Ball Publishers in-exchange for an honest review. 

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