on 4 April 2003
I have no hesitation in recommending this book to anyone. I am a father with three children of my own and this book's tales reminded me so much of my own experience or that of my sister (with a big family) that it seemed I 'clicked' with the book on many occasions. I was pleasantly surprised by just how very, very funny some chapters were (and for busy people they're nice and short as well). It's not so much that I split my sides but I did laugh out loud and found almost every chapter to have something that made my day. This book has now been passed on to many people we know- and they too have read it with great pleasure. I was just sorry it had to end! Thanks very much Sally!
on 1 August 2002
I have read this book at least 5 times. whenever it seems as if your own family life is just getting a wee bit much, this is the book to reach for. Sally Magnusson offers a wonderful and realistic view of what its like to care for and be part of a big family. She makes you laugh and think at the same time. Forget all the 'how to' books, this is much more like our lives.
on 22 October 1999
This book is a must for all underslept parents whose befuddled minds need to be reassured that some vestige of sanity and normality remains! I came across it when a friend received a signed copy and I began to read it with a large helping of skepticism - O yea, another Wonder Woman popping up from behind an army of cleaners, au pairs and cooks. I misjudged her. It is a hilariously funny (in places - serious in others) transparently honest and immediately identifiable record of the fun, frustration and sheer exhaustion involved in bringing up children, dogs, rabbits, gerbils, goldfish and, O yes, spouse. It is very well written, and in laughing with the writer you invariably find yourself laughing at yourself - to the enrichment of your own family life! It is also refreshing in our 'celebrity age' to discover in Magnusson a thoroughly down to earth human being, devoid of sham and with a deep appreciation of the value of the family unit.
An excellent light read, presented in short chapters which reflect the newspaper personal column origins of the pieces. I'm sorry I missed the original editions. Go get it!
on 23 November 1999
It's not often I giggle out loud while reading but this book did the trick. The mere mention of the gerbil's epic struggle with Bonnie the mad Gordon setter or Sally's mother's incarceration in an automated toilet booth in french railway station gets me started again.. Anyone with any experience of dealing with young children - and not necessarily five at a time - will find enjoy this book. (And Mums - the chapters are short enough to read between naps, nappy changes and the next feeding time..)
on 7 June 2011
I first read this book 10 years ago when I was in hospital having a hip replaced. I laughed and laughed then and have continued to laugh each time I have read it since. Anyone who has had anything to do with children will appreciate the problems and chaos that form Sally's family life, you can visualise everything that happens. You can either read this book straight through or you can dip into it and read odd chapters, a great advantage if children are about. It is perfect to give to someone for a present or for having in the spare room for a visitor to dip into just don't leave it in the bathroom as you might not get in for hours if someone starts to read it!! Go on, buy it, you won't be disappointed I promise.
on 18 June 2014
This an excellent book from broadcaster Sally Magnusson, as she guides us through some of the lighter sides of life as a working mother-of-five. A collection of events and vignettes rather than a full-on autobiography, she writes in a style that is easy to read and highly enjoyable.