July 31, 2009 at 04:00 AM EDT

The Slippery Year

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Melanie Gideon
publisher
Knopf
genre
Nonfiction, Memoir
We gave it a C+

Writing your way through a midlife crisis means navigating one of the classic memoir pitfalls: how to make your woes as moving to readers as they seem to you. Unfortunately, this collection of musings from a new-to-California soccer mom comes off as more moody than moving. Gideon, a contributor to The New York Times‘ ”Modern Love” column, seems to wallow in discontent while pondering her worthiness as a wife and parent, always struggling to identify the source of her ennui. Not a Styron-like portrait of depression by any means, The Slippery Year has some self-deprecating charm, but overreaches in its depiction of everyday angst. C+

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