Reviewed by: Carrie Byrd
Review posted: 5/7/04
I feel that this should come with a full disclosure disclaimer at the beginning. Wil Wheaton was a crush of mine. A big old crush. One of those crushes where I thought that someday I would run into him in a little coffeehouse, we’d both be reading the same book and….looooove. There have been a number of them over the years. Wil Wheaton, Tom Cruise, that one guy from the Tomorrow People - I am the very definition of a fickle woman and they have gone on through the years. Therefore it is only fair to tell you that I went into this review wanting to like the book.
That said….I liked the book.
I’ll give you a minute to recover from the shock. Ready? Okay. Wil Wheaton is funny. Like, laughing so hard I’m annoying my downstairs neighbor funny. And he’s sentimental. And sweet. I know. I was surprised too. Wesley’s a writer? Are you kidding me with this? Sure I thought he was cute. And sure I thought he was talented. But a writer? I just didn’t know. I enjoyed reading his blog, but everyone and their brother has a blog. And most people make them relatively interesting. But a book is different, and has to sustain itself in a way that a blog doesn’t.
For the most part, Wheaton has succeeded. A few of the stories, while pleasantly honest, also border on saccharine sweetness. Even those sections are still enjoyable, however. The real payoff, of course, comes with the longest selection in the book, “The Saga of Spongebob Vegas Pants.” This story is actually more than half the total contents of the 110 page book. Funny. Really funny. The other stories suddenly seemed like the frosting. This was the cake.
Wil Wheaton has shown that he’s grown up from a child actor into a mature writer. Dancing Barefoot is an entertaining and interesting collection. You may have to go to some effort to find a copy, but its well worth it.