‘The Joy of Letting Women Down’ by Natalie D’Arbeloff


Humour – hardcover; Robson Books; 160 pages; 2000. Review copy courtesy of the author.

If you’ve ever wondered why stunningly ugly men, usually old and quite rich, end up with devastatingly gorgeous super models on their arms, then The Joy of Letting Women Down will reveal all. You see these stunningly ugly men might be rich and they might be old but they are pure specimens of the “Worshipped Male” and they know every trick in the book to attract – and keep – those devastatingly gorgeous super models we admire from afar.

And that’s what this book does best: illuminate all the games Worshipped Males (read womanisers) play to seduce and trap members of the opposite sex, and, in doing so, exposes the (staggering) differences between the genders.

It also explores the unspoken rules of engagement when it comes to negotiating that delicate thing called a RELATIONSHIP. (For instance, there’s a whole chapter on “punishments and tortures” that Worshipped Males employ to keep their chosen women begging for more. One of these so-called punishments is this:

Phone her very late at night and pour out your troubles at length. She will urge you to come over at once so that she can comfort you. Decline this offer, without saying where you are and hang up with a sigh. She will be unable to get back to sleep, worrying and fretting. You should keep this up for several hours — phoning back, talking some more, hanging up, waiting, calling again, etc.

I laughed out loud a lot while reading this short “instruction manual”. I sniggered too. And occasionally I nodded my head in agreement or recognition (I know a few female work colleagues who need to read this book!)

The black and white illustrations throughout are delightful, but I wouldn’t expect anything less from the woman who has given us Blaugustine, an online cartoon alter ego that makes delightful reading.

And while The Joy of Letting Women Down isn’t my “normal” reading matter, I quite enjoyed my foray into something a little “off beat”.

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