How To Be A Grown Up by Daisy Buchanan

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How do you do, fellow kids? Are you feeling lost? Are you looking for something to help you deal with the looming threat of adulthood?  Call off the search, I’ve found the guide:  How To Be A Grown Up by Daisy Buchanan.

How To Be a Grown Up by Daisy Buchanan, Don't Bend the Spine, UK Book BlogHow To Be A Grown Up by Daisy Buchanan

Publication Date: 6th April 2017
Genre: Non-Fiction
Paperback copy provided in exchange for review
Have you ever felt lost, anxious, panicky about adulthood? Have you ever spent a hungover Sunday crying into a bowl of cereal? Have you ever scrolled through Instagram and felt nothing but green-eyed jealousy and evil thoughts? Award-winning journalist, Grazia agony aunt and real-life big sister to five smart, stylish, stunning twenty-something young women, Daisy Buchanan has been there, done that and got the vajazzle.  In How to be a Grown-Up, she dispenses all the emotional and practical advice you need to negotiate a difficult decade. Covering everything from how to become more successful and confident at work, how to feel pride in yourself without needing validation from others, how to turn rivals into mentors, and how to *really* enjoy spending time on your own, this is a warm, kind, funny voice in the dark saying “Honestly don’t worry, you’re doing your best and you’re amazing!”



When I heard about the upcoming release of How To Be A Grown Up by Daisy Buchanan, I knew I had to read it. When I first read this book, I was in the middle of buying my first home and I couldn’t have felt less of a grown up if I had tried.  As you can imagine, mixing those feelings together with an existential crisis about what I was doing with my life, resulted in me being a big, anxious mess.

You are not a goon among great minds.  Every single one of us is a goon, hoping and praying we don’t get found out.

Let me start this review by saying How To Be A Grown Up is not a self-help book that is going to instantly change your life.  Come on now, no book will do that.  It will, however, make you feel SO much better about yourself.  Reading this book is like having a big sister sit you down for a chat, with a big pot of tea and plenty of biscuits.

How To Be A Grown Up covers topics such as “How to have friends“, “How to make and manage money“, “How to survive at work“, “How to fall in (and out of) love“, and even “A few words about washing your hair“.  In each chapter, Daisy shares lessons she has learned from her own experience on a particular matter, as well as calling on her friends to give a different perspective on a situation.

What I loved most about How To Be A Grown Up was its writing style.  From the first page, Daisy’s chatty and informal style of writing put me at ease.  It honestly felt to me like I was having a chat with a friend, especially with how Daisy weaved anecdotes and witty remarks together in her writing.   I found myself smiling and laughing throughout, and after I finished the book, I felt good.  It also made my heart sing to read that Daisy was a feminist, and unapologetically so.

I also have to say that I admire Daisy for speaking about her mental health in How To Be A Grown Up.  It was refreshing to read an honest account of mental health, together with an acceptance from Daisy that her anxiety disorder is managed.  It hasn’t been vanquished forever after some positive affirmations and a bowl of kale (unlike similar books on the market… *side eye*)  Daisy also shared her experience of going to her GP and subsequently finding a therapist, and this section of the book was particularly reassuring to me, especially as I had been struggling myself.

How To Be A Grown Up is very female-focused, which helps it to be relatable as it’s not trying to please every (wo)man and their dog.   It is predominately aimed at twenty-somethings, and I’d say it is ideal for those of you who are fresh out of university or those of you who have recently flown the nest.  Of course, it will all depend on you as a person.  If you’re the sort of person who has a 5-year plan and a pension, this book might not be for you.  If you’re like me, and you’re struggling to feel like an adult and to be honest you don’t know what you’re doing with your life… *stops to catch breath* It’s ok.  This book is for you.

I devoured How To Be A Grown Up in one sitting (helped along by my train that was delayed, which then subsequently broke down at Bridlington).   I would quite happily read the book all over again in the future, and I can see myself reading a chapter here and a chapter there in the times where I need a little pep talk.

You’re capable of amazing things, but you might miss them if you don’t stop comparing yourself with other people and their achievements.

How To Be A Grown Up by Daisy Buchanan is an inspiring and genuine read.  I honestly needed to read this book, and I’m very grateful that I got the chance to do so.   Reading this book has helped me to realise that I need to stop beating myself about my “failures” and that I don’t need to have my life figured out in my twenties.  Maybe this is something I was supposed to have figured out already, but the encouragement and reassurance from Daisy is a much better way of realising this. 

Reading How To Be A Grown Up has actually motivated me to start blogging (and perhaps even writing) properly again –  a big thank you to the “How to have confidence” chapter!  Who knows, I might finally finish the novel I started during NaNoWriMo 2015…

Rating:  5* | Recommend? Yes

28th November 2017
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