Book Review and Giveaway: Peanut Butter and Naan by Jennifer Magnuson

Disclosure / Disclaimer: I received this book, free of charge, from& Booksspark PR, for review purposes on this blog. No other compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about it

Peanut Butter and Naan cover

And now for a really funny book,
and one that is perfect for reading before the New Year!


Fly-by-the-seat-of-her-pants mom Jennifer Magnuson knew her spoiled suburban brood needed a wake-up call—she just couldn’t find the time to fit one in. But when her husband was offered a position in India, she saw it for what it was: the perfect opportunity for her family to unplug from their over-scheduled and pampered lives in Nashville and gain some much-needed perspective. What she didn’t realize was how much their time in India would transform her as well. A combination of Eat, Pray, Love and Modern Family, with a dash of Chelsea Handler thrown in for good measure, Peanut Butter and Naan is Magnuson’s hilarious look at the chaos of parenting against a backdrop of malaria, extreme poverty, and no conveniences of any kind—and her story of rediscovering herself and revitalizing her connection with those she loves the most. Hers is a story about motherhood that will not only make you laugh and nod with recognition—it will inspire you to fall in love with your own family all over again.


The first part of this book, prior to the family leaving for India, I pretty much laughed and snorted through (warning, do NOT eat or drink while reading this section!).Shaking up one's family by moving to India for a one year term is not how most people would think, but when opportunity presented itself Jennifer and her husband jumped at the chance to change their family's ways.My only concern was the second half of the book, as while the family ventured into the unknown with hardly any information, it seemed like most of their time was a variation of their life back in the states, until one of their domestics brought them to an orphanage that he helped with. Then you saw how the trip made a difference in the family's life. But I wish there had been more follow up in this book,  to see how the trip changed them once they got back to the states.

On the other hand, the book really is a hilarious, you can't put it down read, about motherhood in a foreign country. How does once disguise Malaria medicine, when your youngest refuses to eat the oatmeal? Jennifer's keen eye shares her experiences and relates to how different India is from the States, and within itself, in different cities. She deftly touches on the class struggle in India, the differences as to foreigners live within the different cities, and how we should appreciate the many things we take for granted in the US.

This is a fun and quick read, and if you've ever wondered about uprooting your family and going on an adventure in another country, you need to read this one!

About the Author:

 Jennifer won the Oregon Journalism Education Association’s Pica Stick Award for Outstanding Journalism in 1988 while taking summer seminars at Southern Oregon State, but she didn’t pursue writing professionally until 2005. Her work has appeared in Brain, Child and Bitchmagazine, along with various websites including Mamazine, The Imperfect Parent, Sanity Central, Top Blog Magazine (now Blog Nosh), and, of course, her own blog, Get in the Car. Get in the Car was nominated for best humor blog in the 2007 Blogger’s Choice Awards. In 2008, Jennifer was approached by Nickelodeon to help launch their parenting website, Parents Connect. Jennifer has been a member of the Junior League of America, a Girl Scout troupe leader, Vice President of the PTA and delegate to the 2008 PTA National Convention, a Red Cross coordinator, a Key Spouse for the United States Air Force, a Department of Defense school board member, a former Spouse of the Year for Robins Air Force Base, a 2006 graduate of the Flagstaff Leadership Program and, of course, a room mom for countless elementary school teachers. She blogged about her experience in India at Jennifer recently returned from Abu Dhabi and now lives in Oregon with her husband and five children, ages 18, 16, 11, 7, and 4.


One BTHM reader will win this review copy!

candy canes