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I Don't Know How She Does It: A Comedy about Failure, a Tragedy about Success Paperback – December 1, 2006
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"I love Kate Reddy...her tale made me cry twice and laugh often" * Independent on Sunday * "If you could buy stock in a book, I would stake all my savings on the success of I Don't Know How She Does It. Here at last is the definitive social comedy of working motherhood" * Washington Post * "Refreshingly engaging" * Vogue * "Funny, fast and full of nail-on-the-head observations" * Daily Telegraph * "A book that made me howl with laughter" * The Times * "Searing comedy" * New Statesman * "Painfully funny" * Heat * "Pearson...never hides her intelligence or apologises for her seriousness of purpose" * The Times * "A funny, heartbreaking mirror of the daily lives of mothers" * Telegraph Magazine * "Pearson writes with gratifying elegance and endearing self-mockery" * New York Times *
About the Author
Allison Pearson was born in South Wales. An award-winning journalist, she was named Newcomer of the Year at the British Book Awards for I Don't Know How She Does It. Allison has written for many magazines and newspapers including the Independent on Sunday, Observer, the Sunday Times and the London Evening Standard. She is a contributing editor to Harper's Bazaar and, for four years, she was the popular Wednesday columnist of the Daily Mail. Allison is now a staff writer at the Daily Telegraph. She lives with her family in Cambridge.
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If you keep in mind that this book is intended to amplify the successes as well as the failures that working moms face both personally and professionally, you'll likely see a little of yourself in every situation she goes through...from finding the time to actually cross items off of her ever-present "Must Remember" list, to confronting the nannny and chickening out, to overlooking an incompetent cleaning lady instead of expending the energy to find another one *right now*, to dealing with sexist comments in a male-dominated industry...you will come away with a finer understanding of all that you do that goes largely unappreciated.
Taking that into acocunt, working moms will find this book and it's cynical tongue-in-cheek commentary a welcome change to the moms-that-have-it-all-and-do-it-well "fiction" available in the self-help section!
There's nothing particularly deep about this book. It's just good entertainment. If you have a few days off, a long week-end at the beach, or just want something to fill the time between important matters, pick this one up. It's quick and easy and will keep your interest.
Although I did enjoy this aspect of the book and could strongly relate to it, I found myself increasingly aggitated by the main character Kate Reddy. There was no compromise or give and take with her, especially in regards to her husband. In fact most of the men described in the book were one-dimensional, and compared to my experience very old fashioned. Kate charges around like a bull at a gate, seemingly oblivious to what is really going on around her or bothering to have any real communication about what is going on or what can be done about it- she just takes charge. For me that is where she separates from my experience as a working mum.
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