I went through a phase just after having had children myself where I didn't have a lot of time for reading, and I found it easiest to pick up Mummy fiction style books that were about women who had children. I had a lot in common with the characters, and I was also able to read without much brain power and it didn't take a lot of effort to follow and engage with the plot.
The genre seems a little formulaic. Take a woman who used to have a career, then had a child or children. Show that it is not quite as easy as the woman thought motherhood would be as you follow her day to day activities. Have her doubt her relationship as her partner continues working and doesn't have much to do with the day to day mundane chores, a slightly overbearing know-it-all mother in law, and then have a moment where the women realises the grass is not always greener on the other side.
This is a book that follows the plot I have just described, but it does so in a way that is incredibly witty, and it was enough to keep me highly engaged when I first read it, but also when I have read it again more recently. This is slightly different to other books I have read in the genre as it is written in diary format for a start, covering from September to June - basically a school year in which she is running round taking her daughter to nursery and also dealing with her baby son.
It is set in Ireland, and there are ample examples of cultural references from magazines and TV shows from 2007 when it was written. This might mean that it has badly dated in some places - no-one nowadays will care much to references to the relationship between Britney Spears and Kevin Federline, for example. These were things that I remembered as I re-read it, and when I first read it were hot gossip.
However, I could overlook the fact that this had dated because I found the writing style so warm and engaging. At the heart of it, the author has managed to capture the essence of what parenthood is about and she has done so in a hugely amusing way. We witness Susie have to deal with toddler tantrums, organising birthday parties, dealing with her daughter's less than perfect behaviour, and an outbreak of headlice, all while trying to keep a bit of a sense of who she is herself.
I think mothers can relate to trying to give their child the perfect Christmas or birthday, vowing that in future we will be more organised and perfect. Then before you know it, your kids are chowing down on the not so healthy snack and doing homework at the last minute again because life is not perfect.
Sure, the author makes Susie an extreme of slightly questionable parenting - I don't think anyone is really as disorganised and clueless as this woman, but at the same time I could identify with things and found it funny to read about how her year went. Susie is a bit frivolous, but she is a likeable character and you just want things to turn out ok for her at some point with all the effort she has put in.
This was a great novel to read - very easy to get into straightaway because of it being diary format, great characters that were a bit of a caricature of that lifestyle, but believable. The author has also captured other stereotypes well, such as the mother in law, and the mum who doesn't let her child eat processed food or watch TV, and the bitchy person from the office. I found that although it was 377 pages, I could read this quite quickly, and the diary style was great to pick up and down when I had a free minute. If it didn't have all the cultural stuff in that has dated it so badly, I would give it 5 stars, but as it was littered with this, I will knock one star off. Anyone who is sort of mid 20s onwards would probably still get most of the stuff in there particularly if they have ever followed what is happening in Heat magazine or similar, but it spoils the humour a little reading about it 6 years after it happened. Otherwise, if you are looking for a book that pokes fun at motherhood, then this is for you. (It's maybe not for you if you struggle to find things like headlice, baby poo and vomit amusing. )
I felt an instant connection with this book as soon as I read the title on the library shelf. I am currently a stay at home mum and could empathise with the blurb about the constant battle with trying to run a home bring up two children whilst constantly trying to prove that you are indeed living a worthwhile existance and not just lazy and workshy.
This book is written by an excellent author called Niamh Greene. I had never heard of this author before, but I was very impressed with her style of writing which was extremely witty and very engaging.
The story revolves around suzie a mother of two small children. She used to have a succesful job in PR but has given it up in order to raise her family. This book is written in a diary format, with each page starting with a date. Underneath the date is a full and comprehensive account of what has happened that day. Without reading this book, you may be forgiven for thinking that this could get quite boring. But following the ups and downs of this on edge mother is seriously delicious and so very funny.
I must admit, I found that this book was so refreshing, as although this book is fictional, it will ring true to many mothers who have had the stresses of looking after two small children. The nosey mother in law who is constantly making Suzie feel inadequate, The successful best friend who is totally oblivious to the fact that she is always patronising regarding Suzie's choice to be a stay at home mum.
What I loved most about this story, was the wit. Greene has been so clever in capturing the atosphere and competitiveness regarding the mums in the school when picking up the children. She describes the character of eco mum so well. I believe every school has a true character like eco mum where their child is perfect and they make motherhood look like a breeze. This is what I love so much about this book is it is so true to life that you can empathise with the character and this led me to have many a laugh out loud moment.
Once I picked this book up, I seriously could not put it down. It's humour coupled with the suspense regarding her marriage and suspisions of her husband being adulterous, make for a thoroughly good read. The book has so many twists and turns but all work well in order to keep the readers intrest.
Throughout the text there are occasions when Suzie will enter lists into her diary. For instance a list of how to become a better wife. The lists are so funny. This list reveals her desire to throw away all her grey maternity bras. (her youngest is two!!) I just found these lists made me laugh out loud and warm to Suzie.
I felt that we really got to see the full character within Suzie. She was so beautifully explored by the author. I feel that I really was able to build up a mental picture of Suzie in my mind.Which I sometimes find difficult to do when reading books. I also found myself reading large chunks of the text out to my friends who I know would appreciate certain humour within the book.
I also think that the author was very clever in weaving into the humour the serious side of being a stay at home mum and the depression and low self esteem it can bring. Which again as a housewife who used to have a succesful nursing career I can relate to.
Suzie is 33 in the book and the author captures her age and the issues it brings in a brilliantly accurate way. I only know because I am around this age. Issues such as lack of time for romance and only communication with partner is asking for the remote. I think this is so spot on with couples in this age bracket.
I simply think this book is an excellent read, infact I would go far as to say that it is one of the funniest books I have had the pleasure to read. It is so deliciously truthful and captures the life of a housewife in such an accurate way. I would recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a lighthearted page turner. I would escpecially suggest this book to housewives who are feeling slightly demented, as I can guarantee this book will make you realise that the way you feel is perfectly normal. It made me feel less stressed and more comfortable with myself. Which in my world makes this an excellent book.
Secret Diary of a demented housewife.
By Niamh Greene
I usually tend to stick with books that people have recommended to me or stick with a few favourite authors, so when my hubby new i was nearing the end of my latest book he decided to go about purchasing me a few new books. This being one of them , I'm still trying to figure out if there is some sort of hidden meaning within the title as to why he got me the book even weeks after finishing it.
Anyway he presented me with the book which in all shocked me as we have been together so long now I seriously thought he knew the authors I read but instead of moaning thought I would give it a try as the cover looked rather comical and the title seemed to how i was feeling at the time. Niamh Greene is a new one on me and even asking friends if they had heard of her , all of whom said they had not I decided to give one of her books a go.
Secret Diary of a Demented housewife is all about Suzie Hunt, who gave up work some years ago to concentrate on raising her children Jack and Kate, but still gets Anna the gossip gadget ringing for updates on how dismal Suzie life is since Suzie left work , there is also the VBF (very best friend) Louise whom seems so wrapped up in her own life she rarely listens to others , especially Suzie and her dilemmas, unless it involves those whom are appearing in heat or OK then they have the common ground to have a conversation.
And no demented housewife is complete without a husband and Joe fills that roll, along with Mrs H .... the mother in law with some kind of cleaning fetish! and then you have the children and their ability to be able to puke in all directions when ill,.
There are also the other school mothers and the work colleagues and the new secretary for he husband that seem to be on some sort of mission to tip Suzie from being certified ... not by a doctor but in her own mind ...as being demented to full on over the edge in need of a straight Jacket!
The secret diary of a demented house wife is a calling most women over 30 will relate too I certainly did in lots of ways, I have never as i said read of of Niamh Greene's books and have to say I really enjoyed it , there are many moments in the book you really feel for Suzie and many moments where you can not put it down as you know she is about to do something silly but you have to read on hoping your worst fears will not be confirmed.
I enjoyed the written work of Niamh Greene in this book so much that I have now progressed on to another of her books, Secret diary of a housewife was funny , and i mean laugh out loud funny where people look and wonder what your laughing at ! And being a mother i can really relate to where she is coming from , it was a lesser load for me to carry knowing some of the things Suzie has experienced are similar to my own and that i am not alone in the world. The book is one i have already recommended to lots of people and have already lent it to my sister , I have tied to get hubby to read it to but i think that is going a step to far.... but it would be good if most men did read this then they would know where their wives are coming from.
this certainly is a page turner and one in time i will pick up to re-read.
I bought mine from of amazon for £5.49, but you can get it cheaper of ebay if you are prepared to seach.
I was passed a copy of secret Diary of a demented housewife by a friend as they thought I might enjoy it after mentioning I like reading chick lit.
The book is based around Susie Hunt, a thirty something wife or Joe, mother of Katie and Jack living in Dublin. Written in diary format, the book spans across almost a whole year in which obviously a lot can happen.
I hadn't realised the format was a diary when I first accepted the book. I'm not usually a fan of reading someone's diary but I decided to give it a go. I'll point out now that I have started this book twice and put it down again at the bottom of my pile before finally going back to it and persevering to the end.
Susie's life is typical of a stay at home mum. She gave up her career to being up her children whilst suffering husband Joe is working hard to climb the career ladder and make a good life for them. Susie seems to have a lot of issues with her life. She's not happy with her weight, her children being inferior to other children, her lack of sex life with hubby, as well as the token interfering mother in law.
As the reader you learn a lot about Susie when you start to persevere through the book. In the beginning not a lot is explained well enough to really grip you as a reader.
I spent a lot of the book feeling quite sorry for Susie. She seems to spend her days either shopping or clearing up after hr children. She also appears to do a lot of it on her own with Joe working long hours. The lack of friends in Susie's life is quite sad as her best friend and it appears her only friend is a single career woman who doesn't have a lot of time for Susie's home life tales.
There are a lot of different aspects happening in Susie's life as you would expect by reading a busy mother's diary. Some things that happened I thought were quite far fetched and would never happen, but it all contributed to the reading and the build up to the end which I am pleased to say ends happily for Susie. By that time I was decided she deserved something good to happen to her.
If you think of all the mundane things that bringing up small children can bring, as well as a few exciting aspects that only fantasies may bring, you'll find a few of them in this book.
Overall I thought the author wrote the book well, and despite the slow start which really is worth persevering through, you really get to know Susie as a person and most people will find something to relate to her with. I know I did on a couple of aspects.
I liked the way the diary entries for each day were quite short and didn't fluff on about nothing. The main points of the day were relayed and told in a good but basic manner.
Before I knew it once I had gotten past the beginning the book seemed to flow well with the months turning into each other. The book itself is just over 300 pages long which isn't exactly a long novel by any means. I do think perhaps it could have been condensed down slightly. The last couple of months of the book seemed to drag out with the same story line happening in Susie's life.
If you like reading diary formats then give this a go, but doo keep on wit it if you find the beginning slow.
Published: Oct 2007
Price: Amazon £5.49
I've jusst finished reading this book. As you may know from me, I tend to buy books and Dvds i've never seen or read, just because I have read the back of them and have decided that I will love it. This can happen, but sometimes it doesn't. I probably bought this about 2 years ago, so it's been a while coming. I'm trying to turn over a new leaf and have decided to read/watch all the things I haven't read/watched. If I love them, they stay, If I don't then they go to the charity shop. No point hoarding clutter!
So i've heard of the author before - Niamh Greene. I think she's wrote a few books after this one, but this is the only 1 of hers that I have read.
I thought this would be a years worth of Diary, but it starts on the 1st September, and ends the following June. Fair enough. The format of this book is in diary format, and everyday has an entry. Sometimes a longer entry than others, so therefore some days are more interesting. So what's the book about?
The main character in the book is Suzie Hunt. She is the woman writing the entries. She is married to Joe and has 2 children - katie who is 4 and a half and Jack, who is nearly 18 months. Suzie used to work as a PR, and was good at her job, but she's gave it up to be a stay at home "Mammy". Although she likes to be able to slob out, eating custard creams and catching up on daytime tv, so is a bit "demented", as the title of the book would suggest. Suzie has to contend with the mother in law, who is all for her precious son Joe, and her own parents, who are deciding to try and live it up in their retirement.
Suzie doesn't seem to have a large circle of friends to moan to, and her VBF (very best friend) Louise is a high flying career girl. She has no ties at all, and has just hooked up with her MOM (man of the moment). He is the 1 in Louise's eyes, so could she end up getting married?
Well, life doesn't seem to go smoothly for Suzie and the others that surround her, as we see in the Dairy extracts. Although we can feel that Suzie has the best life - after all no working in an office, having to dress in suits and so on, we get to see the side of Suzie that misses the corporate environment. After all, she has to work hard being a full time mum, and that certainly doesn't pay much!
There was a few funny bits in the book, but not that funny. I found when I started to read this, I kept picking it up again, just to read a few more pages and see where the story was going. Although it was quite predictable, and nothing that out of the ordinary, it was just an entertaining read, and I have decided to keep this book, and perhaps look out for others by the same author.
A good summer read.
Chick lit is not my usual source of reading but this was bought for me as a present and I thought I would give it a go. I really enjoyed it. Don't get me wrong. It isn't deep or challenging at all but it is entertaining and easy to read and was quite funny in parts as well. It even inspired me to write my own book!
The main gist of the plot are marital problems and a falling out with a best friend - very basic stuff but it is handled well and humorously. It is very entertaining and at times has a unique take on things. The 'affair' is so funny and yet at the same time, you really can feel the genuine emotions that run through it.
As with many humorous books in this genre, it is written as a diary and therefore is told solely from the main character's point of view. Some people have the opinion that this limits characterisation and although this can be true, the positive side of this is that you cannot guess the plot twists and turns as easily and so are left guessing for longer, which is fun.
The best thing about this book is the fact so many incidents you can just imagine happening to you personally - or maybe that's just me and my weird life!
The book retails at £6.99 and worth a read.
When the title of this book caught my eye in the library, I had been having "one of those days", and so, feeling borderline demented myself, I really had to read it.
Yes, as you have probably guessed, this is more unapologetic "chick lit".
This is Niamh Greene's debut novel, and this is actually a really good start. Niamh is herself a mother of two, and you can't help but wonder how much of this book is autobiographical....
It is the amusing tale of Susie, a Dubliner, and her chaotic lifestyle.
Susie feels intimidated by pretty much everyone - her domineering and frighteningly efficient mother-in-law (the archetypal Irish "mammy"), her singleton best friend with her glamorous career and lifestyle, the eco-friendly "right on" mother at her daughter's nursery gates and particularly by her husband's new, glamorous secretary with her pneumatic Barbie-esque figure.
Her husband, in pursuit of a promotion at work, starts a stint of working abroad and they start to drift apart. She "inadvertently" finds herself on the brink of an affair with a sympathetic father at her son's playgroup (oops, how did that happen??). She has a major bust-up with her best friend and, just as she thinks things can't get any worse, her parent announce that they are to sell up in Ireland to enjoy their retirement in sunnier climes. How can they possibly abandon her at a time like this???
Can Susie save her marriage? Will she make up with her best friend? Will she ever live down her humiliation on National Daytime Television? And will she ever wear cashmere and drift serenely through life à la Liz Hurley?
Written in diary format, daily entries range from just a couple of lines to several pages and the book covers a nine month period between September and June. The writing style is chatty, flows well and engages the reader.
As the book is told almost entirely from Susie's viewpoint, the other characters can be slightly under-developed but this doesn't detract too much from the enjoyment of the book.
There is genuine laugh-out loud moments and well as some which was toe-curling cringe worthy. And some incidences that you may recognise as having happened to "a friend" (but obviously not you!)
I probably wouldn't read this again but this is not a reflection on this particular book - there are very few books that I would read more than once.....life is too short and there are too many books!!!
Taken for what it is, this is a good book. Nothing too deep or challenging but an entertaining read that provides a witty distraction from your own demented lifestyle!!
Published by Penguin 2007
Available on Amazon from £0.01 plus P&P
OR check out your local library where you can probably get it for free!!! (Use it or lose it..)
(This review has previously been posted on Ciao! by me, under the same username carcraig)
I've just finished reading a book entitled "Secret Diary of a Demented Housewife" by Niamh Greene and quite frankly I'm amazed that I managed to reach the end of it! It was the title that initially grabbed me while browsing in the library and I imagined it to be a rather satirical look at the world of a housewife, somewhat a la Bridget Jones style. However as I started to read this novel I discovered that this wasn't actually the case at all...
Niamh Greene is not an author that I'd heard of prior to discovering this book but have since learnt that she's spent her time between Dublin, London and San Francisco and is the mother of two children. Some might say from reading her biography on her website that this book could be modelled on her. Her second novel which follows on from this one is due to be released in October and is entitled "Confessions of a Demented Housewife."
The story is focused on the life of Suzie Hunt who has retired from the world of PR to become a full time mother to her two children; four year old Katie and toddler Jack. It is written in the style of a diary with entries being made for almost every day that document her routine and more often than not the various events that take place in her world. It follows her through all the typical scenarios such as dealing with two young children, putting up with a rather intrusive mother in law and competing with the various parents at Katie's school. It follows Suzie and her family from September right through to June and so documents the best part of a year.
We meet various characters through Suzie's entries, the main two are probably her two children and also her husband Joe who seems quite a loving guy although the romance has clearly died a little in their relationship. We also encounter Suzie's parents who have found a new lease of life since they've both retired and seem to have an altogether more exciting existence than Suzie and her family! There's also Louise who is Suzie's VBF (very best friend) and who still has an exciting and high powered job which leaves Suzie feeling a little envious, especially when she hears about Louise's various dates with the MOM (man of the moment).
Judging from the very chick lit focused book cover and the rather satirical sounding title I did think I was really going to enjoy this novel. I've read a few diary styled novels and have always found them to be quite enjoyable as well as being much more descriptive and far more detailed than your typical book. I think because they're written from one point of view you build up much more of a relationship with that character and really bond with them as well. This usually means I really start to root for the character and empathise with them too.
However this book really didn't create such a feeling in the slightest. I found it to be rather dull and the descriptions used within it were bordering on ludicrous. I almost felt like Niamh Greene was trying to be too funny, and in doing so actually made the humour more irritating than laughable. It was also wrote in a way that was more pitying than humorous; I found that I was actually feeling sorry for Suzie rather than laughing along at her various situations. Some of the notions expressed seemed so unbelievable that it detracted from the humour too. I think there does come a point when you're trying so hard to be funny it becomes unfunny - and this is it.
Now after saying that I must also highlight the fact that there were a few funny moments in the novel, although these were quite far and few between. One of the particular comments that made me laugh was, "Spent ages admiring my new Tiffany bracelet. Think it may make my wrist look thinner. It's eerie - my body seems to know I was destined for exclusive designer jewellery and is reacting appropriately." There were several other parts that did make me giggle but I found them to occur quite rarely and therefore I don't think there was enough to actually consider this novel as a "funny" or "sarcastic" book which is clearly what it was aiming for.
I also found the novel quite hard to read in a strange way. The way in which the text was written was a little bland and stunted in my opinion, for example things like "woke up to breakfast in bed" and "am in shock" seemed to be perfectly satisfactory diary entries in their own entirety without any further elaboration or explanation. The diary entries that were more than a few lines long didn't really seem to flow and it was almost as if the author had wrote a list of bullet points and then removed the bullet points to make the text into a paragraph. It just felt to me that there was a lot of detail missing and that it didn't really flow that well as text.
To summarise just exactly what I felt was wrong with this book I'd have to say that I found it a little shallow. Now I don't mean shallow in the sense that it only referred to materialistic things but more in the sense that it didn't really delve very deep. I almost felt like the author was writing without a terrible amount of conviction and that she didn't really give much idea as to what was under the surface of the characters. The whole tale was fairly happy go lucky and although the main character Susie was faced with a few dilemmas there were no real earth shattering or heart breaking dramas contained within the novel which left it a little bland.
One of the most serious events was when Susie fell out with her VBF Louise while on a spa break for her birthday. Louise let it slip that she'd actually booked the spa break for her MOM but when things had all gone wrong there she'd invited Susie... and to worsen the blow she then went onto accuse Susie of ruining her relationship with the MOM by telling her to play it cool! Now call me daft but these two are grown women, and the idea that they then spend over a month not talking to each other and missing important events in each other's lives just struck me as stupid.
This book will date quite rapidly as there were copious amounts of references to celebrity stories and television programmes that are already considered out of date. There were multiple references to things like the Ange, Jen and Brad love triangle which is already something in the past. Therefore it's not really got the longevity that most books have in the sense that if someone picked this up in ten years time, the majority of the references would make no sense to them whatsoever.
Now I have been quite negative about this novel and that's largely because it bored me quite a bit. There was nothing Bridget Jones-esque about it and I really didn't bond with Suzie in any way at all. The good points for me were the fact that it spanned almost a whole year which did allow the reader to see a bit of character development although perhaps not as much as could have been built in. Secondly it was quite easy to read in the sense that you could read a couple of diary entries and then put the book away for a couple of days or even a week and be able to come back to it quite easily. It did take me almost three weeks to get through the 377 pages.
So will I be reading her new novel which I believe follows on from this one? Probably not.
Thanks for reading.
Secret Diary of a Demented Housewife - Niamh Greene
Suzie Hunt has given up her Very Important Job in PR to be a full time mother to her two children, Katie and Jack. The story begins just at the end of the summer holiday in Dublin in Ireland, where Suzie is on the verge of going crazy! Fortunately playschool for Katie begins again and Suzie can't help feeling a little tearful, however Katie feels completely the opposite and is full of energy for school again. She enrols in a playgroup for Jack, just fitting it in around her Very Busy Schedule because Dr Phil reruns just can not be missed. This brings new experiences and people, which may not be the best in the long run...
Suzie feels second best to most other people in this novel:
Mrs Hunt, her mother in law tends to still treat Joe (Suzie husband) like he's young, and wants to post him crisps when he goes away on business!
Her Very Best Friend Louise, who is glamourous and still has a good job and earns shed loads.
Eco-mother, the parent of one of Katies peers at playschool who is horrified that some parents feed their kids food with preservatives in.
Her parents, who are enjoying their retirement far too much for her liking! SHouldn't they be sitting in slippers, not doing yoga, feng shui and golf?
Barbie/Becky, her husbands new secretary, with whom she is convinced Joe is having an affair.
Paul/Lone Father, a parent at Jacks playgroup
This story is written as a diary with entries from 5th September until the end of the following June. It is written entirely from Suzies point of view. Som eof the diary entries are very brief and some cover several pages when Something Major has happened. Also, it doesn't have an entry for every day, and some days are skipped.
This book is clearly chick lit and doesn't pretend to be anything else! It's definately not taxing, and you won't over exert your brain cells with this one! However it will keep you interested, because it's written in a very chatty style and has good descriptions of Suzies triumphant or embarassing moments, which at times will make you laugh out loud!
The cover was very appealing to me, I knew from then on that it would be as funny as it looked. The cover features a picture drawn by Katie of a woman practically pulling her hair out, with mum x underneath.
I brought this book in W H Smith for the retail price of £6.99 however it is currently available on Amazon for just £3.89 which is a definate bargain.
Published in October 2007 by Penguin books.
"Fab" - Closer magazine
"Had this reviewer laughing out loud" - Irish Independent
"Hilariously written... will keep you laughing all the way" - Woman
Secret Diary of a Demented Housewife is a hilariously funny satirical look at the mad world of a housewife with two young children.
The lead character Susie is like every other housewife of the 21st century and so has all the same problems. More importantly she has problems that everyone, no matter what their age, can relate to. Her husband Joe is forever at work and may be having an affair!! Her young son Jack is refusing to act normal, well so Susie thinks anyway and her daughter Katie has just started nursery, which has arisen to a whole new batch of problems for Susie to cope with. Her life seems mad enough without the introduction of the mother and toddler group, 'Lone Father' and her friend Louise who's never quite sure whether she's talking to her or not.
The book as the title suggests is written in Diary form allowing the reader to follow the passage of time throughout Susie's chaotic life with ease. It also makes it incredibly easy to read small passages out aloud to anyone who's willing to listen and trust me you will end up doing this.
All in all the novel is a triumph for author Niamh Greene and epitomises the comedy of everyday life that is often forgotten in the hustle and bustle of the day.
A snippet of what the book is all about
"Am exhausted. Probably suffering from Post Traumatic Party Disorder."
"House of horrors. Joe not speaking to me (again)...."
"Had strange vivid dreams where Louise's baby popped out with Jennifer Anniston's head and started lecturing me..."
When Susie's maiden aunt gives her a housekeeping journal, she expects Susie to use it for jotting down nutritious recipes and planning household budgets. But Susie has more important things on her mind ...Like how to keep sane while trying to control a four-year-old diva who thinks she's Judy Garland, as well as a thrill-seeking toddler with a death wish. Not to mention managing a demanding husband who expects a home-cooked meal at least once a fortnight and inconsiderate parents who seem to think luxury spa breaks are more important than spending time with their grandchildren. On top of that, there's the small matter of the Lone Father at the children's play group who is clearly smitten and Susie's passing interest in Posh'n'Becks, Wayne and Colleen, Brad'n'Jen'n'Angelina ...Susie's journal chronicles a hectic year in the life of a stay at home mother, whose one ambition is to possess an outfit that is free of snot stains.