Hailed as “one of the funniest things in Britain
. . . funnier even than Prince Charles’s ears” (People
), John O’Farrell, one of Britain
’s best-selling authors, has written a laugh-out-loud take on the insanity of modern parenting. Alice
never imagined she would end up like this, so anxious after hearing about the dangers of meteorites that she makes her children wear bike helmets in the wading pool. Her husband, David, has taught their four-year-old to list every animal represented in Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf. But the more they push their children, the more things there are to worry about. Are their children falling behind with their schoolwork, their music lessons, or the number of sleepover invitations they received this month?
It seems no amount of gluten rationing or herbal teas can improve their children’s intellectual development, and as Alice
’s eldest child looks set to fail her entrance exam for the exclusive private school on which her parents have pinned all their hopes, Alice
decides to take matters into her own hands. With a baseball cap pulled low over her face, Alice
shuffles into a hall of two hundred kids and takes the test in place of her daughter, her first examination in twenty years. It’s only once she puts herself in the place of one of her children that she starts to realize the sort of exhausting pressures her kids have been under, and that you can’t measure the worth of a child with a percentile ranking.
With a comic eye for detail that has sent his books to the top of the British best-seller lists, May Contain Nuts
is a funny, compelling, and provocative satire of the manic world of today’s overcompetitive, overprotective families.