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From the bestselling author, beloved television host, and “arbiter of style and good taste in all areas” (People) comes a hilariously candid, deliciously snarky collection of essays about his journey from awkward kid to slightly-less-awkward adult.
Clinton Kelly is probably best known for teaching women how to make their butts look smaller. But in I Hate Everyone, Except You, he reveals some heretofore-unknown secrets about himself, like that he’s a finicky connoisseur of 1980s pornography, a disillusioned critic of New Jersey’s premier water parks, and perhaps the world’s least enthused high-school commencement speaker.
Whether he’s throwing his baby sister in the air to jumpstart her cheerleading career or heroically rescuing his best friend from death by mud bath, Clinton leaps life’s social hurdles with aplomb. With his signature wit and relatable voice, he shares his unique ability to navigate the stickiest of situations, like find true love in a crowded gay bar or deciding whether it’s acceptable to eat chicken wings with a fork on live television (spoiler: it’s not). Clinton delves into all these outrageous topics—and many more—in this thoroughly unabashedly frank and uproarious collection.
|Product dimensions:||5.40(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.70(d)|
About the Author
Clinton Kelly is best known as Emmy-award-winning moderator of The Chew on ABC, as well as cohost of the wildly popular makeover show, What Not to Wear. Originally from Port Jefferson Station, New York, Clinton now resides with his husband, Damon, and dog, Mary, in Manhattan and Connecticut.
Reading Group Guide
This reading group guide for I Hate Everyone, Except You includes an introduction, discussion questions, and ideas for enhancing your book club. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.
From the bestselling author, beloved television host, and “arbiter of style and good taste in all areas” (People) comes a hilariously candid, deliciously snarky collection of essays about his journey from awkward kid to slightly less awkward adult.
Clinton Kelly is probably best known for teaching women how to make their butts look smaller. But in I Hate Everyone, Except You, he reveals some heretofore-unknown secrets about himself, like that he’s a finicky connoisseur of 1980s pornography, a disillusioned critic of New Jersey’s premier water parks, and perhaps the world’s least enthused high school commencement speaker.
Whether he’s throwing his baby sister in the air to jumpstart her cheerleading career or heroically rescuing his best friend from death by mud bath, Clinton leaps life’s social hurdles with aplomb. With his signature wit and relatable voice, he shares his unique ability to navigate the stickiest of situations, like finding true love in a crowded gay bar or deciding whether it’s acceptable to eat chicken wings with a fork on live television (spoiler: it’s not). Clinton delves into all these outrageous topics—and many more—in this thoroughly and unabashedly frank, uproarious collection.
Topics & Questions for Discussion
1. What do you think of the title and cover? After reading, do you feel like they capture the spirit of the collection?
2. Clinton’s “tough-talking, bearded hairstylist” stepdad Mike finally takes him to Action Park, though the experience doesn’t turn out quite like he expected. When has a disastrous experience brought you closer to someone?
3. When Clinton meets his friend Jen for the second time, she makes a joke and he says, “I knew we’d be friends forever” (p. 19). Have you ever had that experience with a friend?
4. When Jen and Clinton reminisce about the earnestness and optimism of their twenties, she asks, “Do you really think we were ridiculous?” (p. 32). How do you feel about yourself looking back ten or twenty years—were you ridiculous?
5. Clinton had a frank conversation with the Universe, promising to follow where it led, and two weeks later he got called to audition for What Not to Wear. Have you ever had a similar experience? Do you believe in fate or destiny?
6. Were you a fan of What Not to Wear? If so, were you surprised that Clinton has mixed feelings about both the show and his cohost, Stacy London?
7. What did you think of Clinton’s screenplay? Whom would you cast?
8. Clinton describes the second time he met his husband Damon as a “switch” moment—“one of those moments when someone, or perhaps something, bigger, in the cosmic sense, pulls a little lever and—click—the track you’ve been traveling on is no longer your track” (p. 103). Have you ever experienced a moment like that?
9. Clinton addresses several political topics during his stoned conversation with his friend Renée—do you think it was easier for the author to address these types of topics in this format? Or do you think it was used simply to add a layer of comedy?
10. What do you think it would be like to have a stranger tell you they love you? Do you think it would make the Twitter trolls worth it?
11. “My penis is technically perfect,” is a hilarious opening line to a chapter (p. 143). But seriously, is there anything about yourself physically that you consider “perfect”? What did you wonder about your body when you were younger, and where did you look for answers?
12. Clinton’s reasoning for a mandatory draft for waiting tables is: “If we’re all concerned that tomorrow we may be the one treated like the lowly pissant, smiling like a lunatic for a 15 percent tip, we will all behave more civilly today” (p. 179). What was your worst job ever, and what did you learn from it?
13. Clinton tells two stories about his friend Lisa—one in high school, watching porn together, and another as adults, both married, Lisa with two kids, doing a couples mud bath. What do these experiences reveal about their friendship at different points in their lives? Did their relationship remind you of any friend of yours?
14. Do you think Clinton gave good advice at his sister Courtney’s high school graduation? Which of his four secrets do you need to work on most?
15. If you had to pull out three major themes in I Hate Everyone, Except You, what would they would be and why?
Enhance Your Book Club
1. Knowing what you know now about how Clinton felt about the show, go back and watch an early episode of What Not to Wear. Does he seem shyer than you remember? Nervous? Excited? Jaded? Do you enjoy the show more or less now that you know more about Clinton?
2. Get inspired by Clinton—write an essay about your own life! Or screenplay! Or piece of short fiction! Pick the format that inspires you most, grab a Moleskine, and get going.
3. Reconnect with an old friend and reminisce about the things you talked and dreamed about “back in the day.” Would that version of you be happy with your life now? Which dreams from back then do you still think about?
4. Read one of Clinton Kelly’s previous books, like Freakin’ Fabulous: How to Dress, Speak, Behave, Eat, Drink, Entertain, Decorate, and Generally Be Better than Everyone Else, and compare the two.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
What a fun book to read on a Saturday afternoon.. You won't regret buying it
Upbeat and interesting , just enough personal information without seeming to be nosey, mixed in with insight and hindsight He is so easy to like. Which makes me want to read his work
Sigh. I really, truly wanted to love this book. Being a huge fan of The Chew, I was predisposed to adore this book. But I didn't. Granted, the writing style was snappy. A couple of the stories were outright humorous. However, the book suffered from a bad case of Too Much Information. I cannot for the life of me fathom why Kelly would choose to reveal several anecdotes that should be mortally embarrassing to most people, let alone in a venue that could be read by his family, not to mention innocent bystanders (like me). It is going to be difficult for me to watch The Chew without some of the book's images burned in my brain. I think I'll always wonder now if Kelly is smiling at a guest while he is thinking of how much he hates them. TMI Clinton, TMI.
I liked Clinton Kelly until I read this book.
I like Kelly, I really do. At least on the Chew I've liked him. But I'm sorry I wasted time and money on this book.
That I would watch and love the show What Not To Wear was a foregone conclusion. My friends and I couldn't get enough of TLC's offerings: A Wedding Story, A Baby Story, Trading Spaces, we watched it all. My viewing tapered off after college because I was in grad school and living with my parents who did not have cable. But once I got my own place, the stars aligned and I no longer had to sporadically watch my favorite TLC shows. What Not To Wear would have been on the air for 2 years by that point and I delighted in catching up on Stacy and Clinton's delightful banter. Who among us did not think of someone they could nominate to appear on the show? Let's be honest: I would have been an amazing friend on the sidelines. I say all this so you understand why I was excited to read Clinton Kelly's memoir. I was hoping to learn more about him, as well as get some behind the scenes dish about the show. And that's exactly what I got. The book reads as if Kelly is talking to the reader. Perhaps because I've watched him on WNTW and The Chew but his voice was so strong throughout the narrative. At times it read as if we were old pals spilling dirt and other times he held back the curtain just enough to tease. I admire people who have good boundaries on what they're going to share. But that's not to say Kelly doesn't still push the envelope. If you are the sensitive type, a few stories verge on TMI so beware. I particularly loved hearing about the series of events that led to him being hired for What Not To Wear. It involved beseeching the Universe- and it worked! I also loved learning more about his family and upbringing and how he met his husband. Kelly made me laugh out loud a couple of times. The essays are not completely linear and span a variety of topics. Overall, it was quite enjoyable. I hope he'll keep writing. Disclosure: I was provided an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
YOU MAKE ME SO MAD I JUST WANT TO PUNCH YOU I WANTED TO SEE IF THE BOOK WAS GOOD OR NOT AND YOU FREAKIN' TAKE UP 100 PAGES JUST STOP I SWEAR???? ok rant over byeeeeeee
Not really impressed. So unlike how he acts on the chew.