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Grumpy Old Women by Judith Holder
I picked this book up through Bookcrossing in Derby as I really love the TV programme and thought it might be entertaining. This is not the sort of book I tend to buy so it is great to be able to have a quick look to see if it appeals, if not I just pop it back on the Bookcrossing shelf and it has cost me nothing.
This is not really the sort of book that I would read cover to cover as I can take it in limited doses but I ind after a chapter or so I have had enough. I read it over breakfast during a week a while back. My husband reads his 'Cricketer' magazine so this was perfect for me to read as we sit enjoying our peaceful breakfast.
We nearly came to blows as I sat chuckling away and I read a couple of bits out to my husband. After the second sharing he closed his precious magazine sighed and said that he would read the book himself so please don't share any more!! I really struggle when reading something that is so funny and a great observation on things that happen in life.
So stifling my desire to share I read on only quietly chuckling to myself and ignoring the ye rolling coming from the other side of the table! The quote on the cover of the book sums it up beautifully for me; " this book is sure to be a source of Amusement and comfort to women everywhere - grumpy or otherwise."
The Grumpy Old Women ( GOW) are anything from 30, 40 50 or older depending on the lady which was younger than I thought as I felt I was one and am long passed than milestone. I am sure the GOW on the TV show are older than that but it doesn't take away from the book or humour in any way.
The sings of being a GOW are many and varied but I was 'interested' or possibly I should say worried to see that I agreed with rather too many of the signs on the list so I obviously am indeed a GOW. For example;
I do "collect used margarine tubs"- as I find they come in useful for so many things.
"Easy care fabrics start to appeal" - well why wouldn't they? Who wants to spend all that time ironing?
"You like a slip-on shoe - saves all that bending!"
Anyway you get the idea and then we move on to things that annoy GOW.
"Child proof bottles that you need help from a child to open." And other similar silly annoying every day things come up.
One section I found amusing but not in my case, becoming my mother but, rather my grandmother! I loved my Gran but I certainly don't want to become her and all the funny little things she used to say to us. Thankfully my Mum was more like me and didn't fuss about stain free tea towels, thick curtain linings and she didn't raise herself from the chair like an elderly woman so maybe there is still hope for me.
GOW find themselves trapped between the young and the generation above both of which make demands on them. The children have a superior attitude as they think GOW have never been young and so don't really understand while the older generation think the GOW are there to sort out all their problems with modern day life.
"Nice of God to plan things so that just as our teenage daughters are hitting puberty, we are also at our hormonal worst. They save their special attitude problems for their mothers. There is only so much door slamming a house can take."
And then at the other extreme;
"They are constantly whinging on about their rights, the good old days, the war, their pensions ... and yet my mother seems to have about 500% more leisure time than I do, and about twice as much disposable income as I do. They don't even knit anymore."
The book progresses through different chapters covering " Fun" which was my least favourite chapter, "Christmas" , " Get me the manager", " Children and animals" and so on.
The book is written in a very similar style to the TV show, sort of chatty and familiar as though the author is sitting and having a cup of coffee with the reader. Interspersed with the author's writing we have quotes from the GOW on the television show such as Jenny Eclair, Kathryn Flett and Dillie Keane which make it similar to the television show where there is a commentary then you cut to individuals giving their 'two cents worth' on the topic.
I found this an entertaining read but not a book I would read a second time as really it is amusing but you don't want to hear a joke more than once and this sort of book is only funny the first time for me. I think if you were going to give this to someone as a gift you would have to know that they shared the same sense of humour. I don't think I would have given it to my Mum and certainly not ny aunt who fits rather too well into the 'older generation' model mocked in the book and she might recognise herself!!
I think that the RRP of nearly £10 is rather a lot but I suspect you can pick it up for less on Amzon econd hand and it may even have hit the charity shops as it is the sort of book you buy as a jokey Christmas gift, it is read once and then passed on.
I enjoyed it but will be putting it back on the bookcrossing shelf in the next few days or maybe pass it on to my friend first but I will not be hanging on to it for a second reading.
Thanks for reading. This review may be posted on other sites under my same user name.