How to Be a Grown-Up Review
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Unabridged Digital Audiobook
Runtime: 7 hours, 45 minutes
Read by: Tara Sands

Growing up isn’t easy. As we get older, we find ourselves taking on more and more responsibilities, until we suddenly realize that our lives aren’t as simple and carefree as they once were. But, as the main character learns in the audio edition of How to Be a Grown-Up by The Nanny Diaries authors Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus, sometimes you just have to do what needs to be done.

The story finds 40-something Rory McGovern scrambling to juggle a new job, parenting duties for her two kids, and her crumbling personal life after her actor husband, Blake, decides that he needs some time off from marriage. As Blake shuts her out, Rory is forced to take care of everything on her own. And since her freelance design work isn’t paying the bills, that means taking a job for a new Internet startup, styling high-end rooms for privileged kids while working for a couple of bosses who are practically still kids themselves.

Rory McGovern is the kind of mom that most of us can understand: the frazzled mom who’s trying to do it all—the kind who would probably wear a macaroni and cheese-stained shirt that says, “I can’t adult today.” She sees how other women seem to be so organized, so capable, so...grown-up—yet she feels like she’s still flying by the seat of her pants, living the same life that she lived in her 20s, only with a couple of kids thrown in. And that becomes even more painfully obvious when her former child-star husband decides that he just can’t handle their grown-up life, leaving her to take on even more responsibility.

What follows is a literary freak-out—a story that’s often appropriately chaotic. The novel follows Rory as she tries to deal with two bosses who expect her to do more work with less help—working as much overtime as necessary to get it done. Her experiences with her annoying bosses and their crazy ideas are amusing—and sometimes outrageous, too—but that’s not the only thing going on in Rory’s life. The story skips along through motherhood moments, marital drama, and even some romantic misadventures. And although all of the turmoil in Rory’s life does make for a read that’s somewhat frenzied and haphazard, it’s also pretty honest—the hectic but relatable story of a woman who’s just doing whatever it takes.

How to Be a Grown-Up isn’t an especially memorable read, but it’s an enjoyable one nonetheless. So if you’re looking for a few laughs during your drive from daycare to work and back again, this audiobook makes for a crazy and often fun-filled look at the life of a mom.

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