I genuinely enjoy reading Jancee Dunn. She's worked for Rolling Stone and O: The Oprah Magazine, she's been an MTV veejay and a Good Morning, America correspondent, and she's written one novel and two books of nonfiction - and yet her voice throughout remains down-to-earth and conversational.
Her most recent book is a collection of memoir/essays concerning recent events in the lives of her family, who we first got to know in But Enough About Me. The Dunns have their quirks, but they're ordinary quirks, if that makes sense. Jancee, her sisters, and her parents have remained close geographically and emotionally, and they discuss everything - spouses just have to get used to that. Readers become part of those discussions, which may ring familiar if you also come from a close, chatty family. Jancee shares the clippings about random topics her recently retired parents send her in the mail; in my family it's more likely to be e-mails, but it's the same idea. She relates transcripts of her daily phone calls with her best friend, Julie. She talks about her fear of heights, her love for catalogs, her unexpected - and entirely welcome - pregnancy at the age of forty-one...and yes, accompanying her mother to get that tattoo. She doesn't overshare, but her writing is both intimate and humorous, and as a reader, she makes me feel entirely welcome too.
Jancee Dunn's stories engage me, strike notes of familiarity, and make me chuckle in both recognition and appreciation of their humor. When I reviewed her first memoir, But Enough About Me, I said that I'd want to hang out with her, and I still do.