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9780141008615

ISBN: 9780141008615

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The Public Confessions of a Middle-Aged Woman

(aged 55 2/3)

by Sue Townsend

Category: Home, Family & Health / General
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Publication date: 24 April 2003
Number of pages: 368

Description:
Enter the world of Susan Lilian Townsend - sun-worshippers, work-shy writers, garden-centre lovers and those in search of a good time all welcome. Over the last decade, Sue Townsend has written a monthly column for "Sainsbury's Magazine", which covers everything from hosepipe bans and Spanish restaurants to writer's block and the posh middle-aged woman she once met who'd never heard of Winnie-the-Pooh. Collected together now for the first time, they form a set of pieces from one of Britain's most popular and acclaimed writers that is funny, perceptive and touching.

Review:
Best known as the creator of the inimitable diarist Adrian Mole, Sue Townsend has also contributed a regular magazine column to Sainsbury's Magazine for the past decade and this wonderful, warm-hearted book is the happy result. Collating articles covering a vast array of eclectic subjects from slugs to slobs, Winnie-the-Pooh to writer's block, Townsend here turns her penetrating and irrepressibly witty gaze on the absurdities inherent in daily life and transforms the potentially mundane into a veritable comic cornucopia. In one of her best features she describes how an influx of slugs has changed her from a mild-mannered writer into a potential mass murderer: 'Like all obsessives I've become a bore. I've just said to my husband, "Did you know slugs breed by firing aphrodisiac darts into each other?" I think he muttered "Of course," but it may have been "Divorce!"' Introducing the volume, she's cheerfully self-deprecating and confesses to breaking every cardinal rule of the columnist: family members get exploited, pets feature with increasing regularity, off-the-cuff remarks from taxi drivers get noted - and virtually nothing is taboo! Certain topics, like the belief that her sources of creative inspiration will run dry reappear frequently. As she wryly realizes, life invariably treads a tragicomic balance and her gift for expressing the bittersweet realities of life is remarkable, producing delightful essays at once painfully amusing and surprisingly poignant. The book is laugh-out-loud funny from the very first, and though the author herself admits she can't re-read any of her pieces in this self-confessed 'sanitised autobiography', the odds are high that you'll be dipping into it repeatedly for years to come. (Kirkus UK)

What the papers say:
'Full of... hilarious asides on the absurdities of domestic existence...what a fantastic advertisement for middle-age - it can't be bad if it's this funny' Heat

Author's Biography:
Sue Townsend, with THE SECRET DIARY OF ADRIAN MOLE AGED 13 3/4 (1982) and THE GROWING PAINS OF ADRIAN MOLE (1984), was Britain's bestselling author of the 1980s. She is the author of seven other novels, including THE QUEEN AND I (1992), and her mostrecent novel, ADRIAN MOLE: THE CAPUCCINO YEARS, was published in 1999. She is also well known as a playwright. She lives in Leicester.

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