What Makes Women Happy

Overview

With inimitable wit and insight, this encouraging tome humorously leaps into what makes women happy and what women can do to lead more rounded and balanced lives. Women can learn how to tackle anxiety, envy, guilt, and other sources of female stress, while giving in to indulgences and desires like sex, food, friends, family, shopping, and chocolate. Chapters contain sassy morals, illustrative and sympathetic stories, and a lot of frank advice to show women how to stop obssessing and feeling bad about themselves. ...
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Overview

With inimitable wit and insight, this encouraging tome humorously leaps into what makes women happy and what women can do to lead more rounded and balanced lives. Women can learn how to tackle anxiety, envy, guilt, and other sources of female stress, while giving in to indulgences and desires like sex, food, friends, family, shopping, and chocolate. Chapters contain sassy morals, illustrative and sympathetic stories, and a lot of frank advice to show women how to stop obssessing and feeling bad about themselves. Later chapters confront the four horses of a woman's apocalypse: despair, depression, isolation, and self-doubt.
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Editorial Reviews

Booklist
Part memoir, part self-help guide, Weldon's theory is completely thought-provoking.
Publishers Weekly

According to prolific novelist and playwright Weldon, women's sources of happiness are sex, food, friends, family, shopping and chocolate—in that order. Women can be "wonderfully" happy, but only for 10 minutes because after that, they are beset by anxiety and guilt (re chocolate: "My God, did I actually eat all that?"). Other failed attempts at witty, self-help advice: women should not be upset by men's fondness for porn because "men are creatures of the cave" and porn "just helps a man get through the day." Falling down some kind of rabbit hole that seems to have landed her in the 1950s, Weldon encourages women to fake orgasms because faking is "kind to male partners of the new man kind," who otherwise might become too anxious to perform. Her counsel to infertile women is downright dangerous: before pursuing grueling fertility treatments, first try getting pregnant from random sex with a stranger and then pass off his baby as your husband's. Famous as a novelist for clever feminist observations about the war between the sexes, Weldon (She May Not Leave) caused controversy in the U.K., where this latest effort was perceived as reactionary. Americans will surely find Weldon pathetically out of touch with her core readership with this mishmash of pointless parables and banal advice that won't make anyone happy. (Apr.)

Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Finally, the age-old question of "What do women want?" gets a lighthearted, realistic answer. Prolific author Weldon (The Life and Loves of a She-Devil) shares her opinions and observations about female happiness—the fact that it never lasts more than ten minutes at a time and primarily comes from sex, food, friends, family, shopping, and chocolate. Weldon avoids ponderous analysis and fluffy self-help talk in favor of humor, keen observations, and entertaining parables. Furthermore, Weldon manages to convince her readers that doing good leads to being happy. The engaging chapters—one each is devoted to the seven sources of happiness and the four threats to it—are full of contrasts between nature (how evolution causes us to behave) and nurture (what behavior society expects); women will recognize their own dilemmas in these analyses. And although this work is light on research or evidence, it is certainly an engaging read that will delight women. Recommended for public libraries, especially where leisure reading is often nonfiction.
—Erica L. Foley
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781451303971
  • Publisher: Chicago Review Press, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 4/1/2007
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 5.60 (w) x 8.10 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Fay Weldon is the author of more than 35 books of fiction, including Big Girls Don’t Cry, The Bulgari Connection, Mantrapped, and She May Not Leave.
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Table of Contents


Sources of Happiness
Sex     43
Food     67
Friends     79
Family     103
Shopping     123
Chocolate     143
Saints and Sinners
Death: The Gates of Paradise     163
Bereavement: Unseating the Second Horseman     169
Loneliness: Unseating the Third Horseman     175
Shame: Unseating the Fourth Horseman     203
Something Here Inside     225
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