People I Want to Punch in the Throat: Competitive Crafters, Drop-Off Desposts, and Other Suburban Scourges by Jen Mann
Description: In a collection of essays Jen Man of the popular blog People I Want to Punch in the Throat takes us through how she met her husband, what her wedding day was like and how they'll never be invited to neighborhood parties. She also manages to teach a life lesson or two like that the one day you wear fuzzy pajamas to pick up your kid will be the one day that something goes wrong.
Why I Picked This Book: I've followed Jen's (I'll be calling her Jen in my review because in my head we're BFFs now) blog for awhile and was curious to see how she did in book form.
Pros: Before this book I kind of had mixed feelings about Jen. While her posts are generally funny they frequently seemed really angry. While that's fine in a 4 paragraph blog post I was concerned that it was going to be a bit much in full book form. It turns out she's wonderful in book form! What can read as angry or negative in a short form just comes of as venting in book form. I think the main reason for this is there's enough space for the reader to see the more emotional side of her. She genuinely loves her children and she genuinely loves her life. The posts written by her husband always seemed just kind of mean to me but by getting a more detailed look into their lives I kind of get their relationship more. I think he's probably still kind of a jerk but that's not all there is to it. While their relationship might not work for me you can see that it works for them. This isn't a particularly deep book. It's essays about regular life and especially parenting but it's a funny book. There were a few cringes when a topic hit a little too close to home for me. Mainly there was a lot of head nodding. The neighborhood battles, the joys of school volunteering, the passive aggressive compliments all rang with a lot of truth. When she succinctly and purposely told off a complaining mom at a school carnival I kind of wanted to be Jen for a minute. I'll be keeping the chapter on garage sales bookmarked to remind me why I never EVER want to have another garage sale.
Cons: If you have issues with strong language I'd give this a miss. She doesn't mince words. While the book isn't completely about parenting I'm not sure those without children would connect to it quite as much.
Overall: This is a fun read that is easy to pick up and read a little here and there or all in one sitting. I think parents of elementary school kids in particular would enjoy this.
Would I Read More of this Series/Author?: Definitely! I've always enjoyed Jen's blog but now I think I've got a better understanding of who she is and it will only get funnier!
Would I Recommend this Book?: I think so - especially to people of similar humor to mine. If you're not sure go check out her blog. If you like what you find I think you'll like this book even more.