For women everywhere, a collection of fierce and often funny personal essays on finding enough, from writer Shauna M. Ahern, of Gluten-Free Girl fame.
Like so many American women, Shauna M. Ahern spent decades feeling not good enough about her body, about money, and about her worth in this culture. For a decade, with the help of her husband, she ran a successful food blog, wrote award-winning cookbooks, and raised two children. In the midst of this, at age 48, she suffered a mini-stroke. Tests revealed she would recover fully, but when her doctor impressed upon her that emotional stress can cause physical damage, she dove deep inside herself to understand and let go of a lifetime of damaging patterns of thought.
With candor and humor, Ahern traces the arc of her life in essays, starting with the feeling of "not good enough" which was sown in a traumatic childhood and dogged her well into adulthood. She writes about finding her rage, which led her to find her enduring motto: enough pretending. And she chronicles how these phases have opened the door to living more joyfully today with mostly enough: friends, family, and her community.
Readers will be moved by Ahern's brave stories. They will also find themselves in these essays, since we all have to find our own definition of enough.
|Product dimensions:||5.40(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.00(d)|
About the Author
SHAUNA M. AHERN is a James Beard Award-winning author of four acclaimed cookbooks, including Gluten-Free Girl Every Day. A personal essayist at heart, her work has been published or recognized by the New York Times, Bon Appétit, the Guardian, and the Washington Post. She lives on a rural island outside of Seattle with her husband and two children.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
There is an odd disconnect in these essays. The author writes in detail about her dysfunctional family life, which included parental infidelity and mental illness, but she doesn't seem terribly interested in what that upbringing had to do with her difficulties as an adult with intimacy. She writes about not having a serious relationship until her mid-30's but doesn't go into why it was that way, or even why it took her so long to break away from her mother's involvement in her life as an adult. That's just one example. So many of the essays just end without any kind of wrap-up of the ideas within. They just sort of stop. I can totally relate to the dysfunctional family life, having endured emotional and sexual abuse from an alcoholic parent. I don't quite buy that telling the world about one's misery as a kid is enough. I think you have to do the hard work of understanding why it was that way and how you coped and how those coping mechanisms hold you back from happiness as an adult. I don't see much of that (if any) in this book. I get that writing it may have felt liberating for the author and maybe it'll feel liberating by proxy for some readers, but I feel like it's only halfway there.