Book review: Women Like Us | Mandy Nolan and Ellen Briggs

Gold Coast comedians Mandy Nolan and Ellen Briggs are fed up with being told what they should look like, how they should feel, how to behave, and boy are they are here to tell you about it! Inspired by the ongoing success of their relentlessly-touring dual comedy show ‘Women Like Us’, the sharp-as-nails pair have teamed up once more to pen a frank and hilarious account of their own lives, titled – funnily enough – ‘Women Like Us.’

Covering topics such as feminism, the terrors and angst of parenting, female friendships, body image, aging parents, teenagers, juggling work life with home life, snooty sales assistants, domestic violence and coping with mental illness, ‘Women Like Us’ ranges far and wide, and is bound to resonate, at least in parts, with the majority of readers.

Via small and easily digestible chapters, the pair give their wry and boisterous comedic treatment to issues that are normally discussed with solemn faces behind closed doors, and truly, it’s an enormous relief. Brutally honest, the book is a welcome departure from more careful and watered-down discussions around women’s sexual pleasure and agency, the desire for less conventional relationships and the kind of personality glitches we all have but no one likes to admit to. I expected laughs. What I didn’t expect were the surprisingly touching moments that came as a result of its exploration of complicated family dynamics and heartbreak.

‘Women Like Us’ discusses how its authors have come to a point where they realise they are never going to be perfect and they are just fine with that, and you know what? It may even provide inspiration for you feel the same way.

So if you are feeling completely over all the media blah that tells you you’re too old / fat / skinny / hairy / grey-haired, or sick of feeling guilty for being a working OR stay at home mum (cause both are awful, apparently), or you are just plain exhausted from the constant work that goes into making the lives of everyone around you easier, then this book is for you. I guarantee if you don’t leap up shouting “YESSSS!” at least three times, we’ll give you your money back. (Disclaimer: not an actual guarantee.)

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