Friday Review: Girly Drinks: A World History of Women and Alcohol by Mallory O’Meara

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I was eager to read this from the moment I heard about it. I do like a good cocktail, beer, or wine, and have taken up amateur mixology as a hobby. So, to find a book that tells the history of women and alcohol made it an anticipated read. And it was. To a point.

O’Meara obviously knows her history. She delves into women’s involvement in producing as well as consuming alcohol from early humanity on. She discusses the roles women played in the everyday production of the household beer and other alcoholic drinks to the early days of selling and wholesale manufacturing of alcoholic beverages. There’s a lot of interesting information in this little book, as well as a good dose of humor and a few recipes for cocktails.

Where it fails is in the structure of the book. Each chapter head relates to a person, place, or period of the history of women and alcohol, but she doesn’t stick with that promise. Too many chapters bounced from one time period to another, from one country or region to a completely different one, and from one woman’s story to others. The jumps didn’t always fit or make sense. It got a bit confusing, to be honest.

Still, it was a fascinating read. Women’s roles in the history of alcohol go back almost to the beginning of human existence, and haven’t always been given the highlight they should have, because without some of these woman, the variety and scope of alcohol we have today would surely be less extensive. If you like history, booze, and learning about the roles women took on in areas that most don’t think of as women’s businesses, this book will teach you a few things, and do it with some style and wit.

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Coming May 17, 2022

“Crossed Wires and Other Very Short Stories”. Twelve scifi and twelve fantasy short stories that can each be read in minutes

I have written science fiction, fantasy, and urban fantasy stories. There are novels, novellas, and shorter pieces to fit everyone’s reading time. There are even some free stories, both here on the site and in other places. You can go here to find out more about the books I have published. They are available at Amazon, Smashwords, and most ebook retailers. Thank You!

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