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Thursday, September 08, 2011

Slow Love by Dominique Browning (Book Review)

The invitation to review Slow Love: How I Lost My Job, Put on My Pajamas, and Found Happiness, a memoir by Dominique Browning, mentioned comparisons to Elizabeth Gilbert's Eat, Pray, Love. They shared moments of self-indulgence but the similarities ended there. Gilbert's story inspired me to embrace meditation and explore more of the world. Browning, on the other hand, umm, well, she inspired me to buy fresh mint to add to my drinking water.

The book is a short read and Browning spends most of it in her pajamas, eating cookies and feeling sorry for herself after she loses her job as a magazine editor. In her 50s, establishing a new “normal” is quite overwhelming.

It’s understandable that she would experience a period of shock and even mourning. In addition to the loss of her job, she also spends an inordinate amount of time dwelling on her last relationship with an unavailable (aka still legally married) man. She makes only cursory attempts to improve her circumstances until finally she gets her act together in the closing pages.

There are lovely vignettes but the prolonged look into the dark days only served to bring me down with her. It also made me want to shake her a bit and yell “you’re worth more than that, get it together!” Browning does have a story worth sharing, but the balance felt off if her intention was to inspire others to find their way out, rather than just recount her own despair.

This is a sponsored (but honest) review for BlogHer Book Club. I received a copy of the book (which I'm willing to pass along if you're interested in reading it - just leave a comment below), as well as a small stipend as compensation. For further discussion about Slow Love visit the BlogHer Book Club.


Melinda (Sew-Lin) said...

I think you gave a really fair and honest review of Slow Love. You are much better than I am at this review writing stuff!

That corgi :) said...

I haven't read this, nor heard of it, but it does sound like it was a good place for her to get some of her thoughts out with what she was dealing with at the time. But if it would be considered a self help book, I'm thinking it doesn't fall in that category? Good review of it though!


Toriz said...

Never heard of it. Wouldn't mind reading it, but I'm asuming your copy is in print, in which case it would be useless to me.

Perhaps her intention was to have you thinking - as you would possibly be doing in her position - that she (or you) will never get out of the pit of misery and dispair, only for her (or you) to finally do so in the end? I imagine it would be really depressing though.

C. Beth said...

I'm really glad I didn't sign up for this one. :) I agree with Melinda--great, honest review.