Living Edge’s three book picks for November

PUBLISHED: 11:56 19 October 2020

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Archant

Love to read? Try our three top picks for November.

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Why Mummy’s Sloshed, by Gill Sims

Mummy has been a wife and mother for so long that she’s a little bit lost. And despite her best efforts, her precious moppets still don’t know the location of the laundry basket, the difference between being bored and being hungry, or that saying ‘I can’t find it Mummy’ is not the same as actually looking for it.

Amidst the chaos of A-Levels and driving tests, she’s doing her best to keep her family afloat. She’s feeling overwhelmed and underappreciated, and the only thing that Mummy knows for sure is that the bigger the kids, the bigger the drink.

It’s a good feeling when you can predict the enjoyment a book will give you from the moment you see the cover. This is the fourth (and final) in the Why Mummy series from Gill Sims, who first found a following in her hilarious rants on social media, which gave permission for a whole generation of mums to admit that, sometimes, raising children can be really, really dull and really, really hard. In this year-in-the-life of our hero mum of two and single (but searching) Mummy of the title we see her ricochet from potential disaster to eventual happy ending. Our internal rants are lifted out of our heads and presented in black and white, gloriously made real, allowing us to realise that we’re not alone. Pop it on your Kindle and hide away for some perfect me-time.

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There’s No Such Thing As An Easy Job, by Kikuko Tsumura

A young woman walks into an employment agency and requests a job that has the following traits: it is close to her home, and it requires no reading, no writing – and ideally, very little thinking. She is sent to a nondescript office building where she is tasked with watching the hidden-camera feed of an author suspected of storing contraband goods. But observing someone for hours on end can be so inconvenient and tiresome. How will she stay awake? When can she take delivery of her favourite brand of tea? As she moves from job to job, writing bus adverts for shops that mysteriously disappear, composing advice for rice cracker wrappers that generate thousands of devoted followers, it becomes increasingly apparent that she’s not searching for the easiest job at all, but something altogether more meaningful...

Have you ever, halfway through a rough day at the office, wished you could just do something easy, where nobody had high expectations – or even any expectations – and you could pass your day in a delightful haze. If you have, this novel is perfect for you. It’s a gentle tale, yet a real page-turner, as you watch her get into situations that suggest she’s not quite as ready for life as a non-entity as she believes. Find it with Bloomsbury or go digital with Amazon.

Life in Pieces, by Dawn O’Porter

Dawn O’Porter has been thinking about life. In lockdown. Mostly from a cupboard. From reflections on grief and identity, bad hair days and parenting, sleep and spirituality, to the things we can control and the things we cannot, Dawn’s daily diaries track the journey of her lockdown experience.

For most of us lockdown was a daily slog of home-schooling, trying to keep on top of work challenges, meal planning and non-stop tidying up – a hamster wheel of daily tasks suddenly placed in our lives with no warning and no way of preparing for. It comes as some little solace to realise that even those people we believe live a glamorous Hollywood lifestyle were landed in the same boat, as Dawn O’Porter shares her days in lockdown with a triply incontinent cat, a small boy doing not so well at the potty training, an increasing reliance on Margaritas, weed gummies (who knew?!) and waistband-free kaftans. Available from Waterstones and all good bookstores!

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