Author: Kunal Nayyar
Publication Date: September 15, 2015
Publisher: Atria Books
Genre: Memoir, Humor
Of all the charming misfits on television, there’s no doubt Raj from The Big Bang Theory — the sincere yet incurably geeky Indian-American astrophysicist — ranks among the misfittingest. Now, we meet the actor who is every bit as loveable as the character he plays on TV. In this revealing collection of essays written in his irreverent, hilarious, and self-deprecating voice, Kunal Nayyar traces his journey from a little boy in New Delhi who mistakes an awkward first kiss for a sacred commitment, gets nosebleeds chugging Coca-Cola to impress other students, and excels in the sport of badminton, to the confident, successful actor on the set of TV’s most-watched sitcom since Friends.
Going behind the scenes of The Big Bang Theory and into his personal experiences, Kunal introduces readers to the people who helped him grow, such as his James Bond-loving, mustachioed father who taught him the most important lessons in life: Treat a beggar as you would a king. There are two sides to every story. A smile goes a long way. And, when in doubt, use a spreadsheet. Kunal also walks us through his college years in Portland, where he takes his first sips of alcohol and learns to let loose with his French, 6’8” gentle-giant roommate, works his first-ever job for the university’s housekeeping department cleaning toilets for minimum wage, and begins a series of romantic exploits that go just about as well as they would for Raj. (That is, until he meets and marries a former Miss India in an elaborate seven-day event that we get to experience in a chapter titled “My Big Fat Indian Wedding.”)
Full of heart, but never taking itself too seriously, this witty and often inspiring collection of underdog tales follows a young man as he traverses two continents in search of a dream, along the way transcending culture and language (and many, many embarrassing incidents) to somehow miraculously land the role of a lifetime.
5 / 5 Stars
I’m a huge fan of The Big Bang Theory and Kunal Nayyar. I’ve seen him on a couple of talk shows in the past and enjoy his humor. I have wanted to read Yes, My Accent is Real since I heard it was coming out. I was super excited to find it under the Christmas tree this year.
Yes, My Accent is Real is humorous and fun to read. It’s filled with interesting and heartwarming stories of Kunal Nayyar’s past. My favorite stories were about his college years in Portland, Oregon and how he got his big break.
Kunal Nayyar comes across so personable in this (not a) memoir. It felt like I was his new friend and he was telling me about growing up. The only books I can compare it to are Mindy Kaling’s and Tina Fey’s. If you liked those, you’ll love Yes, My Accent is Real.