THE BEAUTIFUL HANGOVER by Micheline Waring

THE BEAUTIFUL HANGOVER

And Everything Else a Canadian Learned from a Colombiana About the Balance Of Mother, Wife and Self

KIRKUS REVIEW

A disheveled Canadian mom befriends a sexy Colombian, and the end result is a lively account of self-discovery and life balance in Waring and Cano’s memoir.

Though Waring’s lighthearted voice makes for a fun read, her life wasn’t always so breezy. As an expatriate living in Buenos Aires, she loved the culture and her family. But her husband’s job forced him to travel nearly 150 days a year, and the daily responsibility of caring for two young children rested heavily on her shoulders. As a result, she suffered from migraines, a back injury and exhaustion. Enter Cano, a former swimsuit model and Colombian expatriate mother who “laugh[ed] heartily, dance[ed] with the enthusiasm of a teenager and savour[ed] good food like there [was] no tomorrow.” Waring was dazzled by Cano’s flair and the way she balanced motherhood and her own needs. Per Waring, Colombian women embrace their femininity at all ages, but their beauty goes much deeper than the skin. Cano reveled in the moment and appreciated the small things in life. Even hangovers were wonderful events to Cano because she could lounge in bed with her husband. Eventually, the two women embarked on a project to turn Waring into a lovely “Yummy Mummy” like Cano, complete with confidence, playfulness and professionally blow-dried hair. Waring’s personal improvement journey bubbles with humor (often self-deprecating, as she describes her frizzy hair and very pale “blue white” legs) and tongue-in-cheek banter. While marveling at the fact that Cano is a Colombian who doesn’t drink coffee, Waring exclaims, “Oh, my beloved coffee! However as the Canadian who doesn’t drink beer, I can’t throw stones. Somehow, we have both failed in our patriotic duties.” Along with a peek into the ethnically diverse Latin American culture, Waring discusses what she learned from Cano, including a potpourri of life philosophy and health and beauty topics that range from “To Wax Or Not To Wax” to “Power Plate” exercising. A glossary of food and cultural terms, as well as websites and articles for further reading, are included. Waring’s transformation and most of the beauty ideas—like moisturizing skin and drinking lots of water—are familiar. However, rollicking anecdotes, such as the time Waring danced onstage with George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic, are memorable reminders for readers to carpe diem.

Moms searching for mind and body improvement will enjoy the colorful inspiration.

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 2011
Page count: 260pp
Publisher: FastPencil
Program: Kirkus Indie
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1st, 2012




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