Allen & Unwin
A couple of years ago, three years in fact, I read Lotta Dann’s first book, Mrs D Is Going Without. The cover screamed chick-lit, inside she told her ‘struggle’ with drinking a nice bottle of wine most nights. It felt white and false and privileged – but hey, it was her story. And maybe it even helped some others. I was sure it was one of the worst books I’d ever read.
Along comes the sequel – spot the very-clever title. After “going without” now Mrs. D is “going within” – a journey from alcoholism to mindfulness. As with her booze struggle, this is a journey through mindfulness that appears to take place in the passenger seat of a nice car, windows up to avoid any taint.
Billed as a journey around finding her “Zen” it feels like some cosmic joke; the laziest sequel ever – “I’m cured, better find a new problem…” is how it feels.
Spoiler Alert: She name-drops Oprah. Spoiler Alert: Ruby Wax becomes one of her author-heroes. (It’s high falutin’ stuff I tells ya). Spoiler Alert she farts around (pardon the pun) a couple of yoga classes then gets hooked on signing up to online mindfulness lectures and tunes into grab-your-cash gurus who fill her with thoughts to get through the day since it’s so tough updating your blog while your kids are school (I can tell, from, er, “lived experience”, it’s really not…). There are podcasts to listen to and ten-minute meditations while on holiday – oh but this time there’s so little privilege! Why, there’s even a damn tummy bug!
The new addiction is sugar – apparently. And we get bored-at with talk of treat food since she used to be the fun Lotta but stopped drinking.
I thought a kid had written this.
It comes across as spoiled, entitled, bratty, painful.
Then there’s the clumsiness in the actual writing – it was almost a highlight of her first book. Here it’s a goddamn fucking insult.
I hate-read the shit out of this. Which, by the end, meant I was left with just the flimsy cover and even flimsier premise.
Just the worst. The absolute worst. A ghastly, phoned-in and phoney fucking mess.