“Stevie’s life has changed beyond recognition since having her first baby. Stevie loves being a mum, but between the isolation and being vomited on five times a day, she really wishes she had someone to talk to.
With husband Ted working hard to keep the family afloat, Stevie really doesn’t want to burden him with her feelings. Turning to the internet, Stevie starts the anonymous First-Time Mum blog and blasts the rose-tinted glasses of parenthood right off her readers.
In the real world, Stevie meets the formidable Nelle and gorgeous Will, along with their own little treasures, and starts to realise that being a ‘perfect mum’ isn’t everything. But when the secret blog goes viral, Stevie must make some tough choices about who she wants to be, and whether she’s ready for the world to know the truth…”
This book is going to ring very loud, funny and sometimes cringe-inducing bells for any woman who has ever had a baby.
My eldest daughter is thirteen and my youngest is now ten, so it has been a while since I was a new mum, but the memories of those early days are still clear and it seems not much has changed in the intervening years if this book is anything to go by. So many of the events in this book brought back those days and made me laugh out loud, especially the ‘poo-splosion’ incident. On my very first trip out of the house after my first daughter was born, when she was about a week old, I experienced one of these in the Mamas and Papas at Birstall Retail Park and I was ill-equipped to deal with public excretions of that magnitude, given my rookie status. We still talk about it – my daughter had a mass of curly hair when she was born that was very absorbent…
I recognised myself in the heroine (which is definitely the word for every mum there ever was) of this book, Stevie, fumbling her way blindly through the mystery that is parenthood when you first take your very first baby home. I remember so well those feelings of ineptitude, loneliness and failure, because you are now in charge of a whole person that you don’t yet know, don’t understand and who doesn’t come with an instruction manual. It can be a scary time. Stevie tries to manage some of these feelings and frustrations, particularly in the small, dark hours of the night when you feel like you are the only soul on earth awake and worries are magnified a thousand-fold in the silence, by expressing her feelings on a blog that she believes no one else is reading. However, she soon finds out that nothing is ever private in cyberspace and she is perhaps not alone after all.
Mummy bloggers weren’t a thing when my children were babies, but the rise of parenting blogs is a phenomenon that has not passed me by in recent years and this book does a lovely job of exploring the highs and potential lows of baring your soul, warts and all, to the world. I really felt for Stevie – her struggles are the struggles of all new mums but exacerbated by the fact that she is sharing them with the world and loses control of who is privy to those humiliating moments and thoughts and what their reaction to them will be. A cautionary tale for all bloggers perhaps, but it also brings friendship and support – something I can definitely relate to as a member of the ever friendly and supportive book blogging community.
This is a great fun read, studded with nuggets of painful truth about parenthood and I really enjoyed it.
Confessions of a First Time Mum is out now and you can buy a copy here.
Thank you to NetGalley and Canelo for my copy of this book which I have reviewed honestly and impartially.
About the Author
Poppy Dolan is in her mid thirties and lives in Berkshire with her husband. She’s a near-obsessive baker and a keen crafter, so on a typical weekend can be found moving between the haberdashery and kitchenware floors of a department store, adding to her birthday wish list. She has written four previous novels: The Bad Boyfriends Bootcamp, There’s More to Life than Cupcakes, The Bluebell Bunting Society and most recently The Woolly Hat Knitting Club.
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Facebook: Poppy Dolan
Goodreads: Poppy Dolan