BOOK REVIEW – Ms Conception by Pamela Power

Ms Conception

Contrary to popular belief, South African authors do write about things other than political gloom and doom! In fact, some of our local authors really do have the ability to write quite authentically respectable fiction. If only more readers would drag their heads out of the proverbial quicksand of denial and accept the fact that SA is producing fiction of decent quality!

And one such author is Pamela Power – actually, I’m not sure about the respectable part – but she’s damn funny, and any Jo’burg mom will easily relate to her down-to-earth, no-holds-barred prose. Reading Pam’s book is like settling down with an old friend who understands you so well that she can open up and share just about anything with you. From lamenting about the contents of her son’s nappy (and I’m not just talking about her 7-month-old baby), to the dubious contents of her freezer and her paté, which prompted a hilarious discussion around my Friday night dinner table, no topic is taboo!

At one time or another, many of us have had to deal with hazardous in-laws, the demands of those seemingly perfect PTA mommies, a boss who’s clearly the spawn of Satan, and a poor, down-trodden husband who’s behaving worse than your 3-year-old! In Ms Conception, Jo De Villiers finds herself trying to manoeuvre around all these obstacles simultaneously! Throw in a devious, manipulative cow with the hots for Jo’s hubby and it seems like all is lost. But there to save the day the day are Jo’s marvellous friends (thank goodness we get to choose our friends, hey?), her domestic Christina (who’s truly heaven-sent), her divine therapist Jake, and the hallowed aisles of the Woolworths food hall!

This book is, at times laugh out loud funny, and at others quite bittersweet. Moms everywhere will relate to the age old questions that are addressed here: that balancing, juggling act that we’re expected to perform (perfectly) all the time. Jo doesn’t always get it right, but like most of us, she’s doing OK and she reminds us that having a sense of humour really does help!

SA moms in particular will find lots to smile about in these pages. It is so very, very spot on!


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