I had been saving this up as a bit of light relief after some of our recent Book Club reads and it was therefore the perfect choice for the February half term holiday. This is the first novel by the creator of the ‘Peter and Jane’ blog, Gill Sims and thankfully, it did not disappoint. I had initially imagined it would be an extended version of her regular Facebook rants focusing on the exhausting, repetitive and mostly thankless parenting tasks which can lead a mother to drink… It was therefore a wonderful surprise to get to know the fictional characters of the novel (it did indeed make it to Number 2 in the Sunday Times Best Selling Fiction list, dispelling any myths that it might be autobiographical!) The descriptions of other parents struck home along with a clear message of the need for mutual support and understanding, rather than terror and hatred that Ellen started out feeling – having discovered that they are all ‘just human’.
One of my favourite parts of starting a book is choosing a suitable Papilionaceous bookmark to accompany it and, in this instance, I was rather spoilt for choice! There are three different colour ways of the Martini design, complete with recipes for the perfect dry,medium and sweet martinis which I thought could come in handy. I also contemplated the double sided Gibson Girl with all its wonderful nuances of relationships that it captures so perfectly and that are explored to a certain extent in the book. In the end, in keeping with the holiday spirit, I opted for one of my all time favourites, the Cocktail design with the fabulously glamorous 1930s woman, dressed in a floor length white silk crepe, bias cut gown. After all, if Mummy is going to drink, she might as well do it in style.