Slow Love by Dominique Browning should have been called, “My whiny, self obsessed year” because that’s exactly what this so-called memoir is; a rich lady whining nonstop about her vague fears. She fears unemployment and poverty, yet owns not one, but two houses. Trust me, it doesn’t get any better as the book goes on.
It is “supposed” to be the story of job loss. Browning, a former Conde Nast editor, loses her job when the magazine she edits, Home and Garden, goes out of business. That sounds intriguing, right? I expected a struggle with the emotional and financial burdens of unemployment. What I was left with was a woman so foolish she chases a married man for 10 years, and her endless whining about why he won’t commit to her. A woman who seems so afraid of being unemployed because the stock market is crashing and she seems to be losing money, only to find that she owns not one, but TWO very expensive houses. Good Lord. Am I supposed to feel sorry for the author?
She devotes a huge chapter to the dating game of divorced women. It made me nauseous, the nasty way she talks about the men she dated, how she just uses men to get free meals. Apparently in her world, a date isn’t because you may like a man, it’s to get a good meal at a fancy restaurant or something. The men, for the most part, are portrayed as liars, as vacillating child-men who cannot commit to anything other than their next whiskey sour. I felt like I needed a bath after reading that chapter.
She has a boyfriend who, while she is having her kidney removed for goodness’ sake, for CANCER, jaunts off to London. And this is a guy she chases after for endless years, trying to pressure him into finalizing his divorce so they can have “commitment”.
Don’t you just want to shake her to make her WAKE UP?
Yup. And that’s one of the better sections of the book.
I feel like I am being harsh. I suspect I am. Were there any redeeming qualities?
There are two chapters in this book that were good writing. One described her dark night of the soul, as she sits before the piano exploring Bach’s Goldberg Variations. Beautiful, eloquent prose. Promising insight. Music, I suspect, should be this author’s theme and variation, not “Stroller”, the name she gives to her strange boyfriend.
The last chapter is also fine. I wanted to learn much, much more about her background as a musician. I yearned to understand why she left music for editing. She relates a story of teaching that has promise, but falls flat; I didn’t understand the denouement. Maybe I’m just not this lady’s audience.
Not for me. Maybe for you? If you want to give it a try, find it at your local bookstore.
No stars. One, if I’m feeling generous.