Review for “Love Warrior” by Glennon Doyle Melton (2016)
Rating: 1 out of 5 stars
I went into this not knowing anything about the author, her blog, or any of her previous writings. I had no idea of its connection to Oprah’s Book Club either, as that info was not in the e-book edition I read. Honestly, I just picked this up because I like reading memoirs. Lo and behold, within about 15 pages, I deeply regretted my decision.
This is the first book in a long time where my dislike for the author became a 10 out of 10 immediately and it remained that way for the entirety of the novel. In the first 20 pages of the book, Glennon Doyle Melton describes how her then-high school boyfriend was accused of rape by another classmate. She then writes:
I ask him about the rape and he laughs and tells me the accusation isn’t true. I do not break up with him. My friends and I handle this by agreeing publicly that the girl who accused Joe of rape was drunk, stupid, jealous, and lying.
It gets worse. A few sentences later:
A few weeks later I run into the victim in the locker room of my mother’s gym. As we pass each other, I hold my head high. She lowers hers and looks away. I feel an electric sense of defiance and victory.
Are you serious? Ms. Melton, you are an absolute BITCH. Yeah, I said it.
Although Ms. Melton does ‘change’ her life, it’s only after 240 pages of crappy writing and self indulgent whining. Sure, she discusses challenges that women face: body image issues, infidelity, and mommy fatigue, but it’s exhausting, tedious, and very very boring. She berates her husband for being a porn addict but fails to see until much much later that she is not a nice person either, her addictions in this case happen to be food and drama. She also talks quite a bit about the ‘scandal’ her marital separation caused in her church and in her community, with people everywhere giving her unsolicited advice. Umm…well didn’t you tell them all about it in your Christian mommy blog, Ms. Messy Boots? If you don’t want to hear other people’s opinions about your business, then a good suggestion is to keep that business to yourself.
Also: I felt bad for her kids, particularly in several passages in which she’s very blunt in her feelings about their father. I understand that being cheated on sucks, but creating a living record of you bad-mouthing their dad during a rough patch in your marriage for millions to read about for all posterity can’t be a healthy way to deal with your anger.
I can imagine that there are legions of women out there who are living in similar situations, trapped in their middle class homes with their bad ass kids in a sexless marriage and reading these words from a “Christian mom blogger” (umm, her words) is comforting to them. I can also imagine a roomful of these aforementioned women in a room together somewhere, having paid for one day what I spent on my entire grad school tuition to hear Ms. Melton tell them more about her “love warrior” journey. But we all have a sob story, and anyone can sit down and write theirs and get it published. This is one such case. For me this book is nothing special, as there’s no sense of objectivity between the author and the words on the page. This book is a hot ass mess, a phone call from a long winded friend who calls you nightly at 2 am and all you want is for her to stfu so you can go back to sleep. Ugh.
One star. I don’t recommend this at all.