People I Want to Punch in the Throat by Jen Mann

The official blurb:

A debut collection of witty, biting essays laced with a surprising warmth, from Jen Mann, the writer behind the popular blog People I Want to Punch in the Throat

People I want to punch in the throat:
• anyone who feels the need to bling her washer and dryer
• humblebraggers
• people who treat their pets like children

Jen Mann doesn’t have a filter, which sometimes gets her in trouble with her neighbors, her fellow PTA moms, and that one woman who tried to sell her sex toys at a home shopping party. Known for her hilariously acerbic observations on her blog, People I Want to Punch in the Throat, Mann now brings her sharp wit to bear on suburban life, marriage, and motherhood in this laugh-out-loud collection of essays. From the politics of joining a play group, to the thrill of mothers’ night out at the gun range, to the rewards of your most meaningful relationship (the one you have with your cleaning lady), nothing is sacred or off-limits. So the next time you find yourself wearing fuzzy bunny pajamas in the school carpool line or accidentally stuck at a co-worker’s swingers party, just think, What would Jen Mann do? Or better yet, buy her book.

People I Want to Punch in the Throat covers a range of topics that circle around family life in the suburbs – husband, kids, coveting mini vans, bitchy super moms, racist toddlers and accidentally attending a party for swingers thrown by a coworker. Oops.

Jen Mann has a blog of the same name that I wasn’t aware of going in. I believe this book is all new material and not simply a collection of past posts so even if you’ve read her stuff before, you can check out this book. Have kids? You’ll love it. Don’t have kids? You’ll still like it.

I’ve read a lot of books that are supposed to be oh so funny and oh so witty. Usually they’re neither and I walk away borderline hating the writer for being this self-obsessed asshat that expects the world to cater to them. This time? The opposite. I found Jen to be perfectly likable in her dislike of most things around her (mainly annoying mothers who believe the only way to raise a child is to hug them 24/7 until they turn 18). Her writing is smart, filled with just the right amount of snark and self-deprecating humor. The book is a series of short essays that readers can relate to whether they have kids or not. I don’t and still dug it. Have a handful (or more…ugh) of annoying people on Facebook that you know from school but haven’t talked to in ten years that are way too excited to share potty training statuses? Know all those things that run through your head that you wish you could say to them? Jen thinks those things too and has written them all down for us to enjoy.

It’s a fast read – perfect for squeezing in a chapter or two while waiting for your kids to get out is school or dance class or whatever activity is sucking up all your family’s time and money – and an enjoyable one. There’s an accessibility to the stories – less “only moms really get it *winks and elbows*” and more “can you believe this shit?” If you have a sense of humor or need an honest look at modern day parenting with a healthy dose of snark, you’ll be happy you spent the money on this little gem.


I received a free copy of this from the publisher for review.

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