“It’s not where you begin that matters.
It’s where you end up.
Twenty four year old Joey Graceffa has captured the heart of more than 4 million teens and young adults through his playful, sweet, and inspirational YouTube presence (not to mention his sparkling eyes and perfect hair). Yet Joey wasn’t always comfortable in his skin, and in this candid memoir, he thoughtfully looks back on his journey from pain to pride, self-doubt to self-acceptance.
To his fans, Joey is that best friend who always highlights the brighter side of life but also isn’t afraid to get real. In the pages of his first book, he opens up about his years of struggling with family hardships and troubles at school, with cruel bullying and the sting of rejection. He tells of first loves and losses, embarrassing moments and surprising discoveries, loneliness, laughter, and life-changing folks in the road, showing us the incalculable value of finally finding and following your true passion in this world. Funny, warm-hearted, and inspiring, Joey Graceffa’s story is a welcome reminder that it’s not where you begin that matters, but where you end up.”
This book was one that will leave an impact on me probably for the rest of my life.
I don’t normally read a ton of non-fiction but this was one book in which I could totally relate to the author and everything he went through.
Like Joey, I grew up (and still live in) a very small town in Massachusetts, about an hour north of Boston. In fact, Joey’s home town is only about 45 minutes from my home town which I found really interesting. I was bullied in school. I sometimes had trouble making friends. But like Joey, I eventually found a group of a few close friends that didn’t make me feel left out. And to this day, even though we have all gone in different directions in life, I still keep in contact with all those people that I met so long ago. Reading things similar to this in Joey’s book made me realize that other people went though similar things to what I went through growing up.
When Joey was talking about how he got started on YouTube, it made me think back on my own personal experience with it as well. Like Joey, I started my first YouTube channel kind of just for fun. I didn’t think it would turn into anything special but over time I started to realize that YouTube had become such a big part of my life. I eventually got subscribers and people were watching my videos. I came to realize early last year (around the time I started this blog) that making videos could become almost like a job. I made the hard decision to stop making videos on my first channel and ultimately delete the channel itself in April of last year. But, my life with YouTube wasn’t over yet. A couple of weeks later, I started this blog as well as a YouTube channel to go along with it. Like Joey, when I started this channel, I finally felt like I could talk about the things I wanted to talk about and not just talk about one particular subject. I also loved how he talked about some of the big name YouTubers that I have been watching for years, for example Smosh and IJustine, in this book. Seeing them mentioned put a huge smile on my face.
My favorite part of this book was when he talked about his experience on the show The Amazing Race. When I first found out that he had been on the show, I immediately sat down and started watching it. It was hooked right from the start so it was cool to hear his personal experience on it.
Overall, I thought this was a very enjoyable read. It was really awesome to see someone who shares their life on YouTube talk about their life and how they got started on YouTube. Back in October I had the amazing experience of meeting Joey in person when he came to Boston for the release of his new YA Dystopian book Children of Eden. He personality that he gives off in his videos and in this book transitioned perfectly in real life. I think he has a great writing style and I look forward to reading more books from him in the future.
Here is the picture I have from when I met Joey:
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