A quirky, entertaining collection of essays about aging, drawn from the life of the author.
Novelist and nonfiction writer Lancaster (co-author: The Frog-Snogger’s Guide, 2009, etc.) delivers insights about the mundane aspects of her life in British Columbia in her seventh book, which falls squarely between the autobiographical and self-help genres. The author describes herself as a “biddy,” and throughout this book, she lightheartedly discusses the challenges of getting older. She also serves up life-lesson advice for readers, such as urging readers to ask themselves if they have “a personal code of ethics to guide you along the away because you’ll need that.” One humorous chapter touches on how one loses self-consciousness as years go by: “As we grow older, there is a tendency to shrug off any concerns of the past about how we look and how we feel.” She describes how turning 60 amplifies the desire “to cocoon” and to “make sure the number of mirrors in the house are receding in size and quantity.” Despite her quips, Lancaster also emphasizes the importance of staying healthy, eating well and exercising: “Walking, gardening, housework, swimming—it doesn’t matter, just do it and with regularity.” In crisply written, short chapters, the author makes her points concisely, bouncing back and forth between anecdotes from her own life and direct advice about how readers should live theirs. Overall, the book rings with the strong, consistent voice of a woman who truly knows herself.
A quick read that tackles aging and domesticity with humor and insight.