December 28, 2021

Yeah, No. Not Happening.


2020 HarperAudio
Narrated by the author
Finished on December 21, 2021
Rating: 1/5 (Poor)

Publisher's Blurb:

The author of the acclaimed, bestselling In Praise of Difficult Women delivers a hilarious feminist manifesto that encourages us to reject “self-improvement” and instead learn to appreciate and flaunt our complex, and flawed, human selves.

Why are we so obsessed with being our so-called best selves? Because our modern culture force feeds women lies designed to heighten their insecurities: “You can do it all—crush it at work, at home, in the bedroom, at PTA and at Pilates—and because you can, you should. We can show you how!”

Karen Karbo has had enough. She’s taking a stand against the cultural and societal pressures, marketing, and media influences that push us to spend endless time, energy and money trying to “fix” ourselves—a race that has no finish line and only further increases our send of self-dissatisfaction and loathing. “Yeah, no, not happening,” is her battle cry.

In this wickedly smart and entertaining book, Karbo explores how “self-improvery” evolved from the provenance of men to women. Recast as “consumers” in the 1920s, women, it turned out, could be seduced into buying anything that might improve not just their lives, but their sense of self-worth. Today, we smirk at Mad Men-era ads targeting 1950s housewives—even while savvy marketers, aided and abetted by social media “influencers,” peddle skin care “systems,” skinny tea, and regimens that promise to deliver endless happiness. We’re not simply seduced into dropping precious disposable income on empty promises; the underlying message is that we can’t possibly know what’s good for us, what we want, or who we should be. Calling BS, Karbo blows the lid off of this age-old trend and asks women to start embracing their awesomely imperfect selves.

There is no one more dangerous than a woman who doesn’t care what anyone thinks of her. Yeah, No, Not Happening is a call to arms to build a posse of dangerous women who swear off self-improvement and its peddlers. A welcome corrective to our inner-critic, Karbo’s manifesto will help women restore their sanity and reclaim their self-worth.

I have no idea what possessed me to download this audiobook. I'm not a reader of self-improvement books, so I am completely baffled. I decided to listen to it during Nonfiction November, but didn't get around to it until December. It clocks in under seven hours of listening time, so I was able to get through it quickly, but it's not one that I can recommend. Karbo claims to shun self-improvement, but this book is essentially just that. If I had been reading the print edition, I would have quit early on, but it was easy to listen as I walked, ever hopeful for a nugget or two of good advice. My advice to you? If you must, get it from your library rather than spend your money. And, be aware of an overabundance of f-bombs. I should have guessed that from the title.

I received a complimentary copy from All thoughts and opinions are my own.


  1. Sorry this was so disappointing and, after reading the blurb and your thoughts, it just doesn't sound like one I'd give an F- about..LOL

    1. Lol, Diane! Yeah, you can skip this one.

  2. Oh dear, this sounds like a book I should avoid. I'm impressed that you read it.

    1. Helen, it's funny how I can keep listening to a bad audio, but would throw the same book across the room.

  3. Oh no! I am afraid I would have bailed early on.

    1. Deb, for some reason I am very reluctant to quit listening to poor audiobooks. Unless the reader/narrator is awful, I stick with the book since I'm able to listen while doing other things (walking, driving, etc.). With that said, I'm sorry I wasted my listening time on this one.


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