Review: This Will Only Hurt a Little by Busy Philipps

Title: This Will Only Hurt a Little

Author: Busy Philipps

Pages: 321 Pages

Publisher: Touchstone

The Blurb

There’s no stopping Busy Philipps. From the time she was two and “aced out in her nudes” to explore the neighborhood (as her mom famously described her toddler jailbreak), Busy has always been headstrong, defiant, and determined not to miss out on all the fun. These qualities led her to leave Scottsdale, Arizona, at the age of nineteen to pursue her passion for acting in Hollywood. But much like her painful and painfully funny teenage years, chasing her dreams wasn’t always easy and sometimes hurt more than a little.

In this stunningly candid memoir, Busy opens up about chafing against a sexist system rife with on-set bullying and body shaming, being there when friends face shattering loss, enduring devastating personal and professional betrayals from those she loved best, and struggling with postpartum anxiety and the challenges of motherhood.

But Busy also brings to the page her sly sense of humor and the unshakeable sense that disappointment shouldn’t stand in her way—even when she’s knocked down both figuratively and literally (from a knee injury at her seventh-grade dance to a violent encounter on the set of Freaks and Geeks). The rough patches in her life are tempered by times of hilarity and joy: leveraging a flawless impression of Cher from Clueless into her first paid acting gig, helping reinvent a genre with cult classic Freaks and Geeks, becoming fast friends with Dawson’s Creek castmate Michelle Williams, staging her own surprise wedding, conquering natural childbirth with the help of a Mad Men–themed hallucination, and more.

Busy is the rare entertainer whose impressive arsenal of talents as an actress is equally matched by her storytelling ability, sense of humor, and sharp observations about life, love, and motherhood. Her conversational writing reminds us what we love about her on screens large and small. From film to television to Instagram and now to the page, Busy delightfully showcases her wry humor and her willingness to bare it all.

“I’ve been waiting my whole life to write this book. I’m just so grateful someone asked. Otherwise, what was the point of any of it??”

The Review

I have always liked Busy Philipps. I first came across her as Audrey on Dawson’s Creek and I thought she was fab and sassy from then on. Whilst I have dipped in and out of her career I have always admired how she presented herself in interviews or on her social media accounts.

I really loved her autobiography This Will Only Hurt a Little. Her warts and all account of how she made her way through the miasmic fug of Hollywood and all the ugliness that comes along with it: whether that be the negative body image issues she has had to endure before getting or being rejected for roles or the absolute criminal behaviour over artistic license. Busy Philipps really has seen it all.

Philipps’ candour is impressive. She doesn’t paint herself as completely innocent in all things, in fact it is her ability to show her less pleasant side that actually makes This Will Only Hurt a Little seem more balanced and therefore more believable.

What is also impressive is that she does not hold back when talking about her colleagues. For those who want to know the uglier side of some of her co-stars then I can guarantee Busy Philipps does not hold back.

Read this. Read it now.

This Will Only Hurt a Little by Busy Philipps is available now.

For more information regarding Busy Philipps (@BusyPhilipps) please visit her Twitter page.

For more information regarding Touchstone (@TouchstoneBooks) please visit

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