I’m Sorry You Feel That Way is a memoir in the form of a collection of short, funny, sometimes poignant essays, each of which Diana Joseph shapes around one of the men in her life — father, son, ex-husband, boyfriends, friends, and, in one case, dog.
This is one of these memoirs that seems so painfully honest, so revelatory in its details, that you wonder if any of the men in Diana Joseph’s life are still speaking to her since its publication — especially since many of them are introduced by both first and last names, leaving the reader to wonder whether these are pseudonyms or whether she’s really exposing her subjects as mercilessly as she seems to be doing.
Her revealing character sketches tell the reader a lot about each of these men, but of course they end up telling us a great deal more about Joseph herself — her background, her mistakes, her neuroses, what she loves and values. She comes across as a funny, perceptive, though more-than-slightly screwed-up woman. Despite the tongue-in-cheek subtitle, there is nothing particularly “astonishing” about her stories, except that she tells them well and they’re a pleasure to read.