Book Review: The Sober Diaries by Clare Pooley
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If you’re looking for a quit-lit book that is full of alcohol-fuelled misdemeanors, shocking rock-bottoms, and deranged destitution, you will not find it in this book. What you will find is a humbling reminder that alcoholism affects all walks of life, including well-educated middle-class Mums whose lives, on the surface, appear pretty perfect.
Pooley is a fantastic writer: her book is every part honest and hilarious. The Sober Diaries provides readers with a little window into Pooley’s life of caring for three adorable children, a terrier, and a Scotsman (her husband). Talking openly about how her bottle-of-wine-a-day habit snuck up on her slowly, Pooley is a reminder of how easy causal drinking escalates into dependant drinking.
What I loved about this book is how un-preachy it is: it’s laced with enough humour and fact to make its overall approach to the topic of drinking and quitting feel less scary and a little warmer. Pooley’s life improves in so many ways when she gives up the booze: she is a better mother and wife, loses weight, gains confidence, saves some pennies and becomes a beacon of hope for others who are trying to quit.
I’m neither a wife nor a mother and Pooley is more than 20 years my senior, so I was a little concerned I wouldn’t be able to connect with her all that deeply. Boy oh boy, was I wrong! I read the book with the same ferocity I once downed wine.
I’d recommend this book to anyone who is looking for proof of how life grows immensely when booze is no longer ruling the roost.