• The Bossy Bookworm

Review of I Was Told It Would Get Easier by Abbi Waxman

Waxman offers a nice dose of feminism, realistically fraught mother-daughter interactions, and laugh-out-loud funny moments.

Jessica is a single, middle-aged mom, a successful lawyer, and a helpful mentor to the younger women at her California firm. Emily is her teenaged daughter who is unsure what she wants for her future (and is generally irritated by her mother and her fervent interest in Emily's plans).


When mother and daughter head out for a weeklong visit of east coast colleges with a touring company, Jessica's hoping for some quality time with Emily, like they enjoyed in the days before everything she did seemed to set Emily off. Emily's just trying to escape the drama and pressure of her private school in Los Angeles, and she's not at all convinced that college is in the cards for her anyway.


The pair bond over an awkward dinner with Jessica's flirtatious college boyfriend; run-ins with an insufferable mother-daughter pair from home; an interrogation from Jessica's father (Emily's grandfather), who demands details of Emily's career plans; reconnecting with dear old family friends; a visit from the authorities; and moments of levity with delightful, unexpected new friends.


Waxman offers a nice dose of feminism, realistically fraught mother-daughter interactions, and laugh-out-loud funny moments. Emily is realistically questioning and searching, yet she knows herself well enough to establish the broad strokes of what she does and doesn't want for her life.


I listened to this as an audiobook.

Do you have any Bossy thoughts about this book?

Waxman is also the author of The Bookish Life of Nina Hill. I wanted to love that book more--there was so much love for books, and the main protagonist had a gloriously book-focused life!--but I found myself distracted by what felt like too many silly, slapstick moments or details that didn't seem to fit for me.


I mentioned I Was Told It Would Get Easier (along with The Fate of the Tearling and The Girl from Widow Hills) in the Greedy Reading List Three Books I'm Reading Now, 2/17/21 Edition.