Review: People I Want to Punch in the Throat by Jen MannPeople I Want to Punch in the Throat by Jen Mann
Published by Random House Publishing Group on September 9th 2014
Pages: 224
Genres: Biography & Autobiography, Essays, Form, Humor, Marriage & Family, Personal Memoirs, Topic
eARC provided by Copy provided by publisher via NetGalley

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NATIONAL BESTSELLERA debut collection of witty, biting essays laced with a surprising warmth, from Jen Mann, the writer behind the popular blog People I Want to Punch in the Throat   People I want to punch in the throat: • anyone who feels the need to bling her washer and dryer • humblebraggers • people who treat their pets like children   Jen Mann doesn’t have a filter, which sometimes gets her in trouble with her neighbors, her fellow PTA moms, and that one woman who tried to sell her sex toys at a home shopping party. Known for her hilariously acerbic observations on her blog, People I Want to Punch in the Throat, Mann now brings her sharp wit to bear on suburban life, marriage, and motherhood in this laugh-out-loud collection of essays. From the politics of joining a play group, to the thrill of mothers’ night out at the gun range, to the rewards of your most meaningful relationship (the one you have with your cleaning lady), nothing is sacred or off-limits. So the next time you find yourself wearing fuzzy bunny pajamas in the school carpool line or accidentally stuck at a co-worker’s swingers party, just think, What would Jen Mann do? Or better yet, buy her book.Advance praise for People I Want to Punch in the Throat   “People I Want to Punch in the Throat is so good that it’ll make you want to adopt all the cats in the world. I’m not sure about the correlation, but it’s that good. It should come with a warning.”—Jenny Lawson, author of Let’s Pretend This Never Happened   “Jen Mann has an amazing way of telling stories that will make you cringe and burst out laughing at the same time. From swinger parties to racist toddlers, she makes the suburbs unbelievably funny.”—Karen Alpert, author of I Heart My Little A-Holes   “Jen Mann says the things we’re all too afraid to say. Her honest and hilarious writing style reminds me of David Sedaris and Tina Fey.”—Robin O’Bryant, author of Ketchup Is a Vegetable: And Other Lies Moms Tell Themselves   “Jen Mann’s shrewd and unrelenting assault on the absurdity of suburban life is an honest peek into the occasional nightmare that is part of living the American dream. I love Jen. I wish she was my neighbor. It’s so refreshing to know that I’m not the only one who wants to punch almost everyone in the f***ing throat.”—Nicole Knepper, author of Moms Who Drink And SwearFrom the Trade Paperback edition.

Reading time 4 mins

I stalked followed a certain facebook page. (me and like over a million other people, seriously.) I found it to be witty and full of dry sarcasm. I can totally relate to that. I love this page, and eventually I found my way over to the blog. I liked the blog, not enough to subscribe, though. The blog is usually funny, but it is also a bit negative. I am just not always in the mood to read dry sarcasm from over privileged moms. But, when I saw that this blogger recommended a certain book, I went out and got it. I should have paid closer attention to the writer. I know Jen Mann is huge on Facebook, and she has a few other books out, (I read I Just Want to Pee Alone and it was just a collection of other Mommy blogger posts in one book, much meh).  People I Want To Punch in the Throat is an alright book, but I hated so much about it I find giving it a fair review difficult.

Let me start by telling you what I liked about this book. I liked that the author was really honest. She is not cool, or sexy, or skinny, or domesticated, or organized. She doesn’t gloss over her imperfections, she points them out and then we can laugh right along with her about how sad it is. She and her husband sound bitter and asshole-ish, but that is exactly how some people are. I loved that she came up with cute names for her kids, Gomer and Aldolpha. She is really witty. This book was really easy to read. The chapters are somewhat chronological. Each chapter tells a complete story and the bottom line is humor. The author covers so many things that I think some people will relate and appreciate what she is trying to say with the stories.

Personally, I hated so much about this book. First, the author has the audacity to complain about her life. She has it so bad, maybe you can relate, (I can not). In her first year of marriage she and her husband are forced to hire a lawn service and a housekeeper despite the fact that they both work from home. This is perhaps the worst case of lazy I have ever read. She pokes fun at stay at Mom’s that pride themselves on just being parent’s. Then she wants to play with them, all the while wondering how they get it all done (duh, they don’t work). She has a whole chapter on parents doing their kids homework, and another on room moms. It is unfair but there are assholes everywhere. I am not sure how they found their way into her neighborhood.

It is meant to be funny, but… I am just not on the same page as this chic. I don’t want to ever be so caught up in playgroups that trying to get into the Red group will cause me angst. I am not this book’s target audience despite the fact that I have 4 kids. I don’t care about how bad she wants a minivan or how she met her husband. I found most of this book annoying, right down to the garage sale details. (Why not just donate the shit?) I think the author is witty and there is is humor in this book of stories about her life, but it is not something I can or want to relate to.

My Rating


About the Author

In addition to her blog, People I Want to Punch in the Throat, Jen Mann has also written for The Huffington Post, Babble, Circle of Moms, and CNN Headline News. She was voted one of Circle of Moms Top 25 Funniest Mom Blogs for 2012 and 2013 and chosen by the same site as one of the “Most Influential” bloggers. She was a BlogHer Voice of the Year in 2012 and 2013 and was a finalist for two Bloggies in 2013 (Weblog of the Year and Best Parenting Weblog). In 2012 she self-published a debut collection of essays, Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat. She lives in the suburbs of Kansas with her husband (aka “the Hubs”) and is the mother of two children, whom she calls Gomer and Adolpha on her blog. She swears their real names are actually worse.

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I received this product free of charge in exchange for an honest review. This post contains affiliate links. This review is in compliance with the FTC guidelines.

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