Texts From Dad by Peter Barber Book Review

As always, although this book has been sent to me for free, for the purpose of reviewing, all opinions are my own and completely honest. That can be somewhat unfortunate when I don’t particularly enjoy the book.

Texts from Dad chronicles 57 days of daily texts from author Peter, alongside many quirky and cute illustrations. The blurb describes Peter as ‘a technophobic old fart’, and also touts ‘after the first page a smile will creep across your face, by page two you will be hooked’. Unfortunately, this did not happen.

Many parts of the book are genuinely relatable, and somewhat funny, but many more are simply annoying. Popping jokes about Hippies growing lentils and weed, implications of people with piercings getting them exclusively to ‘frighten children’, and unfunny jokes about China upgrading dogs from ‘livestock’ to ‘pets’, just left me rolling my eyes, and wondering if the book was supposed to come across as a twitter rant from someone with 4 followers.

Perhaps it’s the generational difference, maybe I’m just an over sensitive ‘snowflake’, but it just seemed that this author doesn’t approve of anyone doing anything he wouldn’t do.

On the other hand though, as with all things, there were positives to the book. Although, as said, some of the content left me rolling my eyes, the actual writing style is fantastic and engaging, showing that Peter is clearly a very talented writer.

Of course there are some political comments, considering its about the pandemic in a country where our government has been largely incompetent, and I both liked and agreed with many of them. These were the comments that I most found humour in, and it gives a certain comradarie between the author and reader that I appreciated.

Overall, I didn’t particularly enjoy this book, but I think it would give many people a good laugh, which we all need right now. Based exclusively on my own enjoyment of the book, I’d give it 2 stars out of five, but I would boost it to a 3 and a half if I were to base it unbiasedly, focusing purely on the quality of writing, illustration, and content.

I always feel bad giving anything a review that isn’t 100% positive, but we’ll never all like everything, and it’s more important to me that I’m honest. Even though this book wasn’t for me, I’m glad to have read it, and I’m sure that for some this will be their new favourite book. At the very least, I think it’ll be interesting to future generations to see an honest and humerus, human retelling of living through a pandemic.

-Dana


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