Christie Barlow the author of A Year in the Life of a Playground Mother decided to teach her children a valuable life lesson and show them that they are capable of achieving their dreams. She is just a Mum who wrote a book to prove to her children whatever you want to do in life go for it. The book she wrote to prove a point is now an Amazon #1 bestseller in the UK and USA.
I was invited to read 'A Year In The Life Of A Playground Mother' by the author Christie Barlow who is published by one of my favourite publishing houses Bookouture. Although this wasn't a book I would normally choose - it's been a long time since I stood on a playground and preferring books with a little bit more grit, dark psychological thrillers being my favourite the answer was an easy yes for me as I haven't read a bad book published by Bookouture yet - and I've read a lot!
The lead character Rachel and her family are moving house. Moving to her ideal home in the country, getting away from the rat race and playground mafia to a quiet country life - or so she thinks. She turns her back on one playground only to arrive in another in a state reminiscent of Groundhog Day.
I thought I'd read a few pages on my phone 10% of the book later I thought I was going to die laughing. This really was comedy gold - side splitting humour that had me laughing out loud every other page. I literally devoured this book in a day, smiling the whole way through.
Christie described the playground and village antics in such a way that I spent the whole book, 'oh my godding' before collapsing laughing again. There are so many cliches of playground and village life that I'd defy anyone not to have encountered some of it at some time. Living in a village everyone, knows everyone and is usually related in some way - the neighbours, sisters, cousin's uncle - you get the picture and every village has an odd character or two, this village was full of them. Gossip, scandal - both true and made up made for some hilarious antics with literally every turn of the page. Bitchy, competitive mothers that I could cheerfully have slapped - I bet we've all met them at some stage.
Rachel makes friends or I should say, is befriended by Penelope - a women who, at first I could have throttled, but eventually came to pity. Once the gloss was removed a different person emerged but getting there provided immense hilarity. Penelope and her husband Rupert were something else, every weekend taking over Rachel's home, organising her life during the week - their antics left me with my jaw gaping. They were totally oblivious to sarcasm and had skin like rhino's - one such incident that left me open mouthed was when Rachel's husband put up extra coat hooks in the hall with their name on. They had no idea of the sarcasm attached, instead they were flattered, just typical of people only interested in themselves and their own self importance.
All in all this book did what it said on the tin - a feel good book. It was hilarious throughout with characters that were so exagererated they had to be ficticious. The sort of book that once you pick it up and start reading you finish in no time, laughing the whole time - better than any tonic you can buy in the chemist. Not my usual type of book but just the job at the time I read it - thank you Christie for lifting my spirits and for repeatedly making me laugh like a drain.