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I don't review books I don't like!

*****= An all-time favorite
****  = Outstanding
***    = Above average
**     = Enjoyable
*        = Good, with reservations


***The Sweet Potato Queens' Wedding Planner/Divorce Guide

by Jill Conner Browne

Reviewed March 5, 2006.
Crown Publishers, New York, 2005.  273 pages.

Available at Sembach Library (MCN 818 BRO).

What could be more practical?  A flip book with a Wedding Planner on one side and a Divorce Guide on the other!

When this came in, both my other co-workers who were familiar with the Sweet Potato Queens demanded to get it next.  Of course, they bowed to my superior claim that I am the only one at the library who actually might need a Divorce Guide in the near future.

Unlike The Divorce Remedy, or How One of You Can Bring the Two of You Together, this book does NOT encourage you to hang in there and stick it out and turn the divorce around.  Perhaps I shouldn’t have read it, since I still hope my divorce won’t happen.  This book is irreverent and rude in spots, but it does one fantastic thing:  It makes you laugh!

I won’t review the Wedding Planner, though it’s also full of hilarious bits.  The Divorce Guide shows you how to make the best of the event.  Let’s just say they’re not complimentary toward your ex-husband (called the Gloom).  They teach you how to be a queenly Glide as you glide on to a new life.

They have practical advice such as:  Don’t do anything with your hair, but you should “start planning and acquiring the new wardrobe you’ll need for your fabulous new life.”  Another good tip is:  “Try to limit the number of people you whine to each day about your ex to no more than six.  It’s also a good idea to put a cap on the amount of time you allow yourself to expend on such whinage.”

She gives you plans and a song list and recipes for your Divorce Party.  One way to look on the bright side, right?  Although I don’t advocate this approach myself, I had to laugh when she said, “Many Queens around the world have abandoned the idea of marriage altogether and instituted a program of Catch and Release instead.  This makes very good sense to me.  I myownself just purely love to fish.”

However, there is some advice mixed in that I did want to take to heart:  “You may lose that relationship, but don’t lose the lesson of it—it’s yours to keep.  If you learn from it, it was successful, regardless of the outcome.  I hope this book will help you avoid divorces, but if it doesn’t, I hope the laughing helps you heal.”

This book helped me regain my sense of humor.  Come to think of it, people planning a wedding might need exactly the same thing.

Reviews of other books by Jill Conner Browne:

The Sweet Potato Queens' Field Guide to Men
The Sweet Potato Queens' Book of Love
Fat Is the New 30

Copyright © 2006 Sondra Eklund.  All rights reserved.

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