Raising newborn twins in Bangkok wasn't easy, but it was certainly colorful, according to Leanne Shirtliffe's raucously entertaining memoir. From eating deep-fried bugs to entangling with her blunt French hairdresser, Shirtliffe describes parenting abroad with a snappy zest, which is matched by Trudie Kessler, who lends a breezy tone to Shirtliffe's witty observations, ranging from astonishment to self-deprecation. Her examination of post-partum depression interjects a needed dose of poignancy, as does her self-described "sappy" realizations on the joy of motherhood. The locale may be different, but parents will find similarly relatable and hilarious experiences in Don't Lick the Minivan.
As a woman used to traveling and living the high life in Bangkok, Leanne Shirtliffe recognized the constant fodder for humor while pregnant with twins in Asia's sin city. But in spite of deep-fried bug cuisine and nurses who cover newborn bassinets with plastic wrap, Shirtliffe manages to keep her babies alive for a year with help from a Coca-Cola deliveryman, several waitresses, and a bra factory. Then she and her husband return home to the isolation of North American suburbia.
In Don't Lick the Minivan, Shirtliffe captures the bizarre aspects of parenting in her edgy, honest voice. She explores the hazards of everyday life with children such as:
A delayed encounter with postpartum depression helps Shirtliffe to realize that even if she can't teach her kids how to tie their shoelaces, she's a good enough mom. At least good enough to start saving for her twins' college - eh, therapy - fund. And possibly her own. Crisply written, Don't Lick the Minivan will have parents laughing out loud and nodding in agreement. Shirtliffe's memoir might not replace a therapist, but it is a lot cheaper.
©2013 Leanne Shirtliffe (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
"Leanne Shirtliffe writes with hilarity and poignancy as to the trials and pains (literally) of motherhood. She is our new Erma Bombeck!" (Elizabeth Boyle, New York Times best-selling author)
No plot spoilers please!
Humor is an odd thing. I know from the other reviews I read that many people found this to be hysterically funny. I was really looking forward to a light-hearted upbeat listen. The problem was that I just didn't think it was funny at all. It all sounded forced. To my ear the narration was halting and strained. I would seriously suggest you listen to the audio sample carefully before download. Can't recommend.
I listen to audible books at bedtime as I'm falling asleep. It made me laugh so much, that I had to stop listening to it a number of times, just so that I could fall asleep. I just wanted to keep listening and laughing, but it kept me awake.
GREAT intonation in her voice!
I wanted to, but didn't have time.
middle, not the best, not the worst book I have listened to.
poor recitation, flat, no emotion, choppy, with pauses where there should not be any. Poor narration distracts from the humor that the author wishes to portray
This was a poor listen, not because of the content, rather the poor naration .
Hilarious, funny, heartwarming
How to laugh at myself, my children, and life in general
This book was hilarious. I could relate to the author as a woman and as a Canadian - not as a mother (since I do not have children yet). Her details of giving birth and raising children in Thailand were both universal and unique in scope, and her hilarious descriptions of parenting coupled with her "sappy files" provided a wonderful counterbalance.
"Great character narrator, tedious storytelling"
Loved The narrators voice, it was fresh, and had buckets of character. It's a big part of why I purchased the book. She just sounds so funny! But the story telling is not funny. I could tell what was supposed to be funny, but it wasn't funny. The metaphors and similes were too many and varied, and there was far too much hyperbole. Over done, all overdone.
A David Sedaris book. I thought this book was going to be like a female David Sedaris, with witty observations and insights,
I would look out for other comedic books with this narrator. Honestly, great performance, but the story telling couldn't keep me listening.
Boredom, annoyance, tedium.
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