The Gender Agenda:
A First-Hand Account of How Girls and Boys Are Treated Differently
by Ros Ball and James Millar
Release Date: July 17, 2017
Publisher: Jessica Kingsley Publishers
Number of pages: 186
Source: ARC from Net Galley
Read 7/11/17 to ???
I don’t do this often, but I’m going to write a review of this book before I’ve finished reading the book. Don’t worry, I’ll explain my reasons. It’s also not very often a book ends up in my DNF pile, and this one interests me enough to stay out of that pile…so far. But today is its publication day and with everything I have going on in my life right now I really don’t know how long it will take me to finish the book. I know it takes me longer to read a nonfiction book than my usual contemporary romance, but this one really is not moving quickly for me at all.
I’m getting ahead of myself. I don’t want you to think this is a bad book. My problem with this book is partly my reading style and partly the writing style. The book is set up in three sections. I’m still in the first section (which is by far the longest section), which is called The Diary. This section is a diary of the pair’s Twitter account (@GenderDiary) they started shortly after their second child, a son, was born to document how he was treated in comparison to their older child, a daughter. While I find the snippets of their daily life and observations interesting, I feel it’s lacking in substance. I love Twitter, but tweets are not books. Sometimes I felt I was missing some background information. That perhaps a particular tweet was in reference to another tweet that wasn’t mentioned. I don’t know, it just didn’t feel fully fleshed out to me.
The second section is called The Blogs. While I haven’t gotten to this section yet, I jumped over to take a gander. The section starts with an explanation that in the summer of 2012 the authors were asked to contribute a series of blogs to an online magazine. So again, it’s a rehashing (from what I can tell, word for word) of previously published work they did…on a blog this time instead of Twitter.
The final section is titled Dad Diaries. From what I can tell, it’s another section of previously released work. This time from only James Millar as he becomes the primary childcare giver of the children and observes how he’s viewed by the outside world.
So as you can see, this book is a compilation of a Twitter account and two blogs that have all previously been out there for public consumption. That in itself is not really a problem if you go into it knowing this. The description of this book does say it’s adapted from tweets and blogs, so if you read the description you cannot be mad about that. It’s more that I don’t know how well these formats (tweets and blogs) translate to a whole book.
That all being said, I found the subject matter interesting. I found the authors very observant of the world around them as well as their own actions. I will be finishing this book (and will update my review if needed) and hope once I get out of the Twitter section I will find the reading a bit more smooth.
**I received an ARC of this book courtesy of Net Galley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review**