With lighthearted humor and a touch of irony, Dederer introduces her readers to the culture of motherhood in north Seattle during the late 1990s…. Dederer’s memoir, like a challenging yoga class, flows smoothly and shows by example that a full life is one that is constantly in motion.
Dederer’s humor is tangy and precision-aimed; her targets are the sine qua non of memoirs: mothers and marriage. A book reviewer and social critic with bylines in the New York Times, Slate, and Vogue, Dederer acidly deconstructs hip, politically correct Seattle…. Dederer writes superbly and offers sharp insights into family dynamics as well as hatha yoga’s impact on American life.
As a diehard yoga-culture skeptic, I began this book with a certain dread of encountering breathless, self-righteous platitudes about the spiritual healing powers of yoga, but I was immediately charmed and disarmed by Dederer’s fiercely intelligent, funny, unsentimental voice. This book contains not platitudes, but real, hard-won insights; yoga became, for Dederer, a rebellion against goodness, not a path to it. This story of her revolt against perfectionism is a joy to behold and a true inspiration.
Like many a stiff-jointed U.S. male, I’m not interested in yoga. Yet I devoured Claire Dederer’s elegant account of how trikonasana saved her life. Poser is a bracingly honest investigation of family and freedom, parenting and perfectionism. It is also funny enough to make most writers swoon with envy.
This funny, spectacularly well-observed, and moving book does what even yoga can’t: it provides solace while making you laugh. I feel three inches taller.
Claire Dederer is all these women: a daughter attempting to make sense of an irresistibly nutty divorce; a new mother trying to meet the ridiculously high standards of a peculiarly liberal breed of uber-moms; a wife struggling to salvage intimacy in a marriage slammed by exhaustion, mortgage payments and encroaching in-laws; and a lost soul who stumbles into a yoga studio and finds salvation. Above all, Dederer is a brilliant writer whose prose sparkles and cuts deep. Poser is a book you will want to immediately share with your friends. It’s hilarious, unflinching and bursting with love.
Dederer is a mother with the heart of a poet.
Poser, which tells the story of Claire’s attempt to become absolutely perfect at yoga—and, by extension, life—is knocking me out. It’s very funny about yoga culture and disarmingly honest about how complicated marriage and family life can be.
Refreshingly free of pretense or posturing, Claire Dederer’s spot-on memoir mines the treasures and pitfalls of one woman’s life choices, with tenderness, humor and wisdom.
Poser made me laugh out loud, and delivered the welcome message that at least one clog-wearing, educated, creatively employed, left-leaning, hyperaware mother of two young children has found a way to prevent her head from exploding from stress. With humor, big-heartedness, and depth, Claire Dederer has beautifully described how she said “screw it” to the perfectionism that is the feminist legacy of her generation.
Through “coronal planes,” sutras and savasanas, from downward dog to lotus poses, Dederer contributes nuggets of yoga trivia paired with a droll, self-effacing delivery that’s both down-to-earth and pleasingly introspective.
This memoir about her decade doing downward dog while raising two kids and trying to keep her marriage alive reads like EAT, PRAY, LOVE for hip but harried moms . . . funny, well-observed, and ultimately inspiring.
A terrifically entertaining book. Whether you are a yoga addict, mother, feminist or child of the Sixties, you’ll love it.
She skillfully and sympathetically articulates how women her age are bewildered in their attempts at self-definition…Brutally funny…A magnetic read.
Genuinely funny… Poser will find a devoted following among women weary of pronouncements and prescriptions.
So many readers will relate to her story; not just the long minutes spent in downward dog… but the years of pondering the mysteries of family relationships, past and present.
Why did Claire Dederer take up yoga? Short answer: for the same kinds of reasons that Elizabeth Gilbert changed her life in EAT, PRAY, LOVE and to much the same funny, charming, self-deprecating, stealthily inspirational and (quite possibly) best-selling effect.
Poser has the gravitational pull of a good novel and an unusually genuine voice that envelops the reader swiftly….Dederer sparkles when introspection is ruthless—the result reads true and funny.
Warm and funny . . . Poser reads like a rich conversation with a friend, moving from laughter to quiet reflection and back again.
Poser is superb.