Playgroups and Prosecco by Jo Middleton

ppPlaygroups and Prosecco: The (mis)adventures of a single mum by Jo Middleton

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

January 3rd 
Jaffa Cakes – 7. Times I was forced to watch a small child do a dance involving a dusty piece of ribbon found under the sofa – 4. Inappropriate thoughts about Zac Efron – undisclosed. 

Single mum Frankie’s whole life revolves around her kids. But when your toddler has a more active social life, something has to change. Forget ‘me-time’, Frankie would settle for some adult conversation, and watching something other than the Disney channel.

The local playgroup may be ruled by Instagram mums with perfect husbands but Frankie accidentally forms a splinter group of single parents. After all, Mummy really needs a playdate of her own. (Now pass the prosecco.)

I received an e-ARC of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Playgroups and Prosecco is one of the best mum books I’ve read, it had me absolutely howling with laughter at the relatable toddler behaviour and playgroup mafia wars.

It isn’t an aspirational parenting book, but Frankie’s way of mumming through life was just so accurate to what is a lot of mum’s reality. We are all doing our best, and sometimes we’re a bit rubbish but we try! The book was extremely funny in a very natural way. Some of these types of books exaggerate somewhat to the point of spoiling the joke, but Jo Middleton just tells it as it is and recognises that kids acting like normal kids are far funnier than any amount of made up over the top stories.

As well as a lot of relatable mum stories, I really enjoyed Frankie’s progression throughout the book with her friendships and work life. It was fantastic to read a book where the focus wasn’t on her love life and finding a man to save her from single mum life. Frankie’s Tinder experiences were funny because they were framed around Frankie’s obvious contentment to live alone with her girls. Focusing on making friends and finding a fulfilling and yet flexible working life was a far more positive, uplifting plot and I really love that this shift away from always having to put a romantic relationship at the centre of women’s fiction is happening.

This is the perfect book to curl up and read with a glass of wine having just had the bedtime struggle with the kids. I sped through the pages and truly felt like I was one of Frankie’s friends.

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