My rating: 4 of 5 stars
4 fun and honest stars to How Hard Can It Be? ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️
How Hard Can It Be is the sequel to Allison Pearson’s, I Don’t Know How She Does It, and while I have not read the latter, I felt there was enough backstory and character development here to read this as a standalone. I do plan to read IDKHSDI because it’s been acclaimed as the social comedy of working motherhood, and I already know I enjoy Pearson’s wit.
Kate Reddy is seven years older and about to turn the big 5-0. Her children are now teenagers with teenage baggage, she is now part of the sandwich generation because her mother and in-laws are aging, and her husband has picked this time of excess stress to have a midlife crisis. How in the world will Kate manage it all? The answer is with wry humor.
Kate’s story of juggling all of life’s challenges, especially this newly evolving sandwich generation, and feeling very much alone in doing so, is without question relatable. Kate (and Allison) truly get it, and I felt like giving her a few high fives while reading. Or fist bumps. Or the wave!
If you, too, are part of the sandwich generation, and you are looking for some laughs and commiseration, How Hard Can It Be is worth a read. While it was essentially lighthearted, it was the perfect read that left me with a smile on my face.
Thank you to Allison Pearson and St. Martin’s Press for the print ARC. How Hard Can It Be will be published on June 5, 2018.
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“Few sequels beat the original, but How Hard Can It Be? does so hands down. Kate Reddy’s comeback as a pushing-50 “Returner,” re-entering the workforce after a spell on the mommy track, is zesty, razor-sharp, and hilarious. With a robust absence of self-pity, she has defined the humiliating onset of “invisibility” that coincides with the onrushing pressures of parents, teenage kids, and a marriage gone flat, all while attempting to reinstate her perilous professional worth. It’s full of such quotable casual profundity on the female condition I couldn’t read it without a pencil to underline the abundance of great lines. Get ready for Kate!” —Tina Brown
Allison Pearson’s brilliant debut novel, I Don’t Know How She Does It, was a New York Times bestseller with four million copies sold around the world. Called “the definitive social comedy of working motherhood” (The Washington Post) and “a hysterical look―in both the laughing and crying senses of the world―at the life of Supermom” (The New York Times), I Don’t Know How She Does It introduced Kate Reddy, a woman as sharp as she was funny. As Oprah Winfrey put it, Kate’s story became “the national anthem for working mothers.”
Seven years later, Kate Reddy is facing her 50th birthday. Her children have turned into impossible teenagers; her mother and in-laws are in precarious health; and her husband is having a midlife crisis that leaves her desperate to restart her career after years away from the workplace. Once again, Kate is scrambling to keep all the balls in the air in a juggling act that an early review from the U.K. Express hailed as “sparkling, funny, and poignant…a triumphant return for Pearson.”
Will Kate reclaim her rightful place at the very hedge fund she founded, or will she strangle in her new “shaping” underwear? Will she rekindle an old flame, or will her house burn to the ground when a rowdy mob shows up for her daughter’s surprise (to her parents) Christmas party? Surely it will all work out in the end. After all, how hard can it be?