I love a book that makes me laugh, especially if it’s nerdy humor. I love a book with books in it – it’s kind of meta and that appeals to my oddly working mind. I love book people from every walk of life. I love grand romantic gestures. So basically, I loved Shelly’s book THE MOMENT OF EVERYTHING. She did so many things beautifully, but it was her humor, especially her nerdy humor that won my heart. So here are my five favorite excerpts (I snuck in one that I just love, not because it’s funny).

1. Some of my favorite humor is highly visual, written so the image draws itself in your mind. In one scene, Shelly paints an image so vividly just thinking about it now still cracks me up. Her book is set in the heart of Silicon Valley, nerd culture reigns, so weaving Star Wars references and real-life role-playing into the plot seems natural.

In this excerpt – the main character observes a group discussing the need for ewok abuse in a neighboring chain book store.

 “Even better,” said Doug, the tall IT guy with a Louis XIV mullet who kept telling his anxious cell phone to fuck off. “You could strap each foot to an Ewok and then you’d have slippers that could walk for you.”

“Ewalkers,” said Jason.



2. Sometimes it’s all about the set up that makes a clever play on words even more delightful:

I’d spent most of the last three hours at Cuppa Joe determined to conquer Lady Chatterley’s Lover. I was just gong to finish my chapter in The Devil’s Heart before getting to it. But when I left Cuppa Joe, I was done with The Devil’s Heart and sixty pages into The Fortune Hunter. For once, Lady Chatterley was going home untouched.

3. I love how she captures the silly, natural dialogue of two people.

“And the bathroom’s clean,” I said.

“Gnomes,” he said. “Noisy little devils. Kept flushing the toilet and giggling.”



4. In this scene, I love how Shelly captures that moment of ‘complete loss of sanity.’

“For fuck’s sake, why couldn’t they do like normal people, “ I said a little too loudly. The kids playing in the fountain stopped and stared at me. “Yes,” I said to them. “I’m a bad woman who ruins people’s lives and curses in public.”

5. This last one isn’t in here for it’s humor, but for it’s ‘Damn, I wish I wrote that’ quality.

And then I saw them. Dizzy and Dae-Jung. They were at the end of the aisle, a good twenty feed of fiction away from me. Dae-Jung was leaning back against the row of books facing me, Dizzy next to him, turned toward him. They were looking for a book, in that way that people do when they really want to be looking at each other.


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Amy Reichert

Amy E. Reichert is the author of THE COINCIDENCE OF COCONUT CAKE (Simon & Schuster/Gallery, July 21 2015), about food, love, and second chances, and where serendipity comes in the form of a delicious coconut cake. Find out more at

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