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Born to be Mild

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A handful of years ago I moved with my wife to a house on a quiet street in a quiet town and lay quietly in a room for a long time. I used to love an adventure, and I had jobs on magazines (remember magazines?) which provided the opportunity for plenty of them, but when I hit my thirties I started to become increasingly afraid of the world, until I was too frightened to ev A handful of years ago I moved with my wife to a house on a quiet street in a quiet town and lay quietly in a room for a long time. I used to love an adventure, and I had jobs on magazines (remember magazines?) which provided the opportunity for plenty of them, but when I hit my thirties I started to become increasingly afraid of the world, until I was too frightened to even go outside at all. And I had no need to go outside: I'd somehow wangled it so my job was mostly tweeting, which meant no colleagues, no bosses, no office, no alarm clock, no deadlines . . . just me, my phone and my social media feeds. Doesn't sound too healthy, does it? It wasn't. Everything went bad. Rob Temple runs a social-media empire from the comfort of his sofa. Living the dream! But what happens when a lack of colleagues, bosses and alarm clocks means that your sofa, and the four walls of your very quiet living room, become your whole world? In this tender and life-affirming memoir, Rob explores what it will take for him to become a little less Bear (Pooh) and a little bit more Bear (Grylls), and how mild-mannered, anxious rule-followers can get their own share of (gentle) adventure from time to time.


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A handful of years ago I moved with my wife to a house on a quiet street in a quiet town and lay quietly in a room for a long time. I used to love an adventure, and I had jobs on magazines (remember magazines?) which provided the opportunity for plenty of them, but when I hit my thirties I started to become increasingly afraid of the world, until I was too frightened to ev A handful of years ago I moved with my wife to a house on a quiet street in a quiet town and lay quietly in a room for a long time. I used to love an adventure, and I had jobs on magazines (remember magazines?) which provided the opportunity for plenty of them, but when I hit my thirties I started to become increasingly afraid of the world, until I was too frightened to even go outside at all. And I had no need to go outside: I'd somehow wangled it so my job was mostly tweeting, which meant no colleagues, no bosses, no office, no alarm clock, no deadlines . . . just me, my phone and my social media feeds. Doesn't sound too healthy, does it? It wasn't. Everything went bad. Rob Temple runs a social-media empire from the comfort of his sofa. Living the dream! But what happens when a lack of colleagues, bosses and alarm clocks means that your sofa, and the four walls of your very quiet living room, become your whole world? In this tender and life-affirming memoir, Rob explores what it will take for him to become a little less Bear (Pooh) and a little bit more Bear (Grylls), and how mild-mannered, anxious rule-followers can get their own share of (gentle) adventure from time to time.

30 review for Born to be Mild

  1. 4 out of 5

    Steve Green

    This book should have been for me. I sometimes feel crippled by indecision, and I can get very anxious about things, so whilst it was never going to be a self-help book, I thought it may provide some funny insights into the life of someone who suffered similar problems. Also, I like the Very British Problems tweets Rob puts out, but this book was shallow, a bit dull, and not very funny. The overwhelming feeling I had was that Rob is just a bit of a man-child. He says that himself once in the boo This book should have been for me. I sometimes feel crippled by indecision, and I can get very anxious about things, so whilst it was never going to be a self-help book, I thought it may provide some funny insights into the life of someone who suffered similar problems. Also, I like the Very British Problems tweets Rob puts out, but this book was shallow, a bit dull, and not very funny. The overwhelming feeling I had was that Rob is just a bit of a man-child. He says that himself once in the book, so I’m not being mean when I say it. Sure, he’s got problems, and as I said, I can empathise with some of them, but largely he’s a privileged individual with no real responsibilities going off on jollies. It’s an endless stream of picking a whim, doing it, and probably not enjoying it. Ad Infinitum. I laughed just once during the whole thing, and honestly, I was relieved to see the acknowledgements page. It’s billed as a life-affirming memoir, and it’s anything but. For me it just didn’t work as a book. It felt like someone’s failed pitch for a TV show at best, at worst a lot of made-up, or exaggerated events told by someone you feel vaguely bored by.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Tipper

    I adored this book, it’s my favourite of all the books I’ve read so far this year (I’ve read 53 books so far this year in case you were wondering and I've written one, I'm really into books). It’s very suited to reading during a pandemic because it’ll give you an appreciation of the small pleasant activities in life. It’s brimful of humour and honesty and it has dark bits but also lots of hope and light. I like it so much that last sentence was too long and I was babbling. Check out the trees at I adored this book, it’s my favourite of all the books I’ve read so far this year (I’ve read 53 books so far this year in case you were wondering and I've written one, I'm really into books). It’s very suited to reading during a pandemic because it’ll give you an appreciation of the small pleasant activities in life. It’s brimful of humour and honesty and it has dark bits but also lots of hope and light. I like it so much that last sentence was too long and I was babbling. Check out the trees at the start of each chapter, lovely.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Stevie

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. A nice Sunday afternoon book. Easy to read and quite funny. I was looking for more of a get out of your head and try these small adventures type of thing though whereas the moral of this was more don’t feel like you need to have small adventures... I think me and the author are looking at the same problem from opposite sides - I need a small push out and he needed a small push in. Not quite what I was looking for but I enjoyed it anyway.

  4. 5 out of 5

    PAUL

    Rather disappointed with this. More of a book to dip into every now and again than to be read continuously (like I did). The author seems to be tactfully avoiding mention of the problems he was facing, and instead you get a lot of vague references or quick brush offs of what seem to be monumental events. Close to the end he is considering helping others in similar positions, and it seems as though this may have been a useful focus for the book? Instead it’s just a series of mildly amusing anecdo Rather disappointed with this. More of a book to dip into every now and again than to be read continuously (like I did). The author seems to be tactfully avoiding mention of the problems he was facing, and instead you get a lot of vague references or quick brush offs of what seem to be monumental events. Close to the end he is considering helping others in similar positions, and it seems as though this may have been a useful focus for the book? Instead it’s just a series of mildly amusing anecdotes that may have been better diarised. It makes sense to me now why I found this so difficult to find in Waterstones, as I expect they didn’t know which section it belonged in so hadn’t actually put it out. It’s not really a biography, it’s not fiction, it’s not a travel guide. It’s just a bit of a missed opportunity sadly.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Garside

    Pure, revealing and real. Anyone who has ever experienced any form of anxiety can probably relate to so much of this book. Loved it from start to finish!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jess Nipper

    I downloaded the audiobook version of this book purely because Mat Baynton was narrating it, but upon listening, I discovered a new favourite book. Period. I’m not one for memoirs, I find them stuffy, boring, and cash grab-y (just my opinion), but this was lighthearted and sincere, hilarious and deep, silly yet profound. As someone who struggles with anxiety, and especially with setting myself unrealistic goals, I felt seen by this memoir, and I related so much with Ron’s adventures for the mild. I downloaded the audiobook version of this book purely because Mat Baynton was narrating it, but upon listening, I discovered a new favourite book. Period. I’m not one for memoirs, I find them stuffy, boring, and cash grab-y (just my opinion), but this was lighthearted and sincere, hilarious and deep, silly yet profound. As someone who struggles with anxiety, and especially with setting myself unrealistic goals, I felt seen by this memoir, and I related so much with Ron’s adventures for the mild. Highly recommend, especially if you’re like me and don’t usually read this sort of book. I’m pretty sure it’ll change your mind.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Stuart

    Rob Temple’s Born To Be Mild is an impressive attempt at answering a possibly life changing question: Can socially awkward, nervous and anxious people still go adventuring and have a good time? Rob embarks on fifty adventures (both big and small) to pull himself out of a life of solitude he has created for himself to try and discover what constitutes an enjoyable experience or, at the very least, where on the line between comfort and conformity sits a good time. In forcing himself out of the hou Rob Temple’s Born To Be Mild is an impressive attempt at answering a possibly life changing question: Can socially awkward, nervous and anxious people still go adventuring and have a good time? Rob embarks on fifty adventures (both big and small) to pull himself out of a life of solitude he has created for himself to try and discover what constitutes an enjoyable experience or, at the very least, where on the line between comfort and conformity sits a good time. In forcing himself out of the house, from his very restrictive comfort zone, and into the world to experience what it has to offer, Rob Temple becomes a paragon of anxious exploration for all those people (myself included) who continue to cancel their lives due to mental health concerns. Rob Temple faces many different adventures during the course of the book, such as travelling to Barcelona and Berlin, learning yoga, rediscovering chilli sauce, airbnb-ing (kind of a word) and haggling for dodgy looking ornaments with mixed results. Born To Be Mild is a personal journal more than anything. Rob invites us into his life, letting us see through his eyes, experience his own reflections and philosophising while giving us the opportunity to apply his outlook to our own lives. If you are looking for an advice piece that will guide you, hold your hand and explain ways to deal with mental health problems head on then this is not that type of book. It is a mostly hilarious, sometimes distressing, interior monologue of a man setting out to bypass his defeatist nature and symptoms of severe anxiety to live his life on the mild side. When I say this book is hilarious, I mean it! Rob has a fantastic perspective on the world around him and he expresses his musings into words in the best ways. His writing is funny, relatable and extremely quotable. I guess that’s why his Twitter page, Very British Problems, is so popular. It is clear why Rob got into journalism as his writing is very stimulating, quirky, upbeat and packed with witty observations. It is also clear that Rob has had his share of trouble and it sits underneath quite a lot of what he says, present but not often referenced. Plenty of his adventures into the world are successful and provide opportunities for laughs, eye-rolling and facepalming in embarrassment. His time in the flotation tank imaging he was a pork pie was brilliant. Some of the trips are disastrous and end leaving Rob worse for wear such as an attempt to return to living in London for a month that ends short after stress induced blackouts take him over the edge. Born To Be Mild is a mixing pot of experiences that includes zany humour, hardcore cringy embarrassment, poignant reflections on mental health and a shed load of interesting experiences that a lot of people can connect with in important ways. I don’t do a lot of things in my life because I am socially awkward and anxious about new experiences. Born To Be Mild has taught me a few things and the two most revealing elements Rob Temple has provided me were that adventures are better with friends and that anything can happen, you just need to show up. I have barely any negative points to this book. Sometimes the writing veers off into streams of rambling but it kind of suits the subject matter when it happens so it wasn’t too bad. I would say that it goes on just a bit too long for my liking. That’s about it though. The only thing that could have made it better was an actual foreword by Barrack Obama. I thoroughly appreciated Born To Be Mild. I picked up the book for one reason and stayed for so many others. Adventures are a vital part of life and I shouldn’t be missing out. There are book conventions and places I want to see and take my family too and Rob Temple has reminded me that anxiety doesn’t have to ruin things, it just shifts my perspective on certain aspects. Born To Be Mild has left me with food for thought (and some images I can’t unsee) and I highly recommend it as a fantastic read that is another step in the right direction for people battling mental health issues and those who live with and care for them too.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Lina

    Nope. I tried. I really did. I didn't want my first book of 2021 to be a DNF (did not finish) failure. Yet at 20 something percent I couldn't deal with it anymore. I've been a follower of The Very British Problems Twitter account for a couple of years and I enjoy the content a lot. So after seeing this book on offer I had a lot of expectations before even buying it. I'm not British but I've been living in Britain for quite a few years mostly being surrounded by British people so I can easily rel Nope. I tried. I really did. I didn't want my first book of 2021 to be a DNF (did not finish) failure. Yet at 20 something percent I couldn't deal with it anymore. I've been a follower of The Very British Problems Twitter account for a couple of years and I enjoy the content a lot. So after seeing this book on offer I had a lot of expectations before even buying it. I'm not British but I've been living in Britain for quite a few years mostly being surrounded by British people so I can easily relate to all the British "problems" often pointed in his Twitter account. The book was nothing like it though. The awkwardness constantly surrounding the author was something else. I could not understand how a grown man (or anybody in that matter) can be so awkward. I tried my best to relate to his "issues" but with every page I kept growing more impatient and annoyed. I used to be awkward...when I was 15. Maybe I just never had an easy life and I had to teach myself to stand up for myself, for my rights and take the life by its horns and find purpose even in little things so I cannot relate to the problems at all. Overall I'd say 2.5 because there were some funny bits at the beginning but I will not be finishing this book as I feel like I won't benefit from it at all.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Anne

    Aaaw..this is a great book.! I love the GBP tweets, and after reading this book, which is basically a year in Rob's life, I am pretty sure he get most of his material from his mum and dad! Lots of laughs, but it is also a serious book showing how he has tried different ways of coping with his life, which has not been easy, which most of us can relate to in some way or other. He is very down to earth and really just wants a simple life and has just realised that actually he is happy with that and Aaaw..this is a great book.! I love the GBP tweets, and after reading this book, which is basically a year in Rob's life, I am pretty sure he get most of his material from his mum and dad! Lots of laughs, but it is also a serious book showing how he has tried different ways of coping with his life, which has not been easy, which most of us can relate to in some way or other. He is very down to earth and really just wants a simple life and has just realised that actually he is happy with that and that is ok. Best quote from the book....when he decided to become flexitarian!! ( veggie, but with the option to add meat or dairy whenever he feels like it!!) I honestly loved it. (My daughter bought it for me for Xmas, so thanks Kim! I know you will read my review!! Xxx )

  10. 4 out of 5

    Katie Harper

    A great read, funny and so unbelievably true to life.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Gemma

    I feel by finishing this book I have accomplished a marathon. I love Very British Problems so thought I would love this. However, I found it very difficult to have empathy with the author. Nothing much happens in the book (which is rather the point of the book), but unfortunately it didn’t make me laugh either. Oh well, onto the next book.......

  12. 5 out of 5

    Nicki

    This was fab audiobook about how you don’t have to go far to have an adventure, in fact you can stay very close to home and still have fun. Rob Temple has voiced what I think a lot of people struggle with, feeling like they have to keep up with all the social media posts of friends doing extreme sports or going on adventurous holidays to feel alive. Suffering from anxiety from a young age he’s tried to do the adventurous thing but he realised it really didn’t suit him. So he stopped torturing him This was fab audiobook about how you don’t have to go far to have an adventure, in fact you can stay very close to home and still have fun. Rob Temple has voiced what I think a lot of people struggle with, feeling like they have to keep up with all the social media posts of friends doing extreme sports or going on adventurous holidays to feel alive. Suffering from anxiety from a young age he’s tried to do the adventurous thing but he realised it really didn’t suit him. So he stopped torturing himself and visited places near to his home in Godmanchester instead. My favourite of his experiences were the crocodile farm, especially that conversation with his Mum about whether the crocodiles might escape in a flood! Being among the bees, haggling at the antique shop, the head massage, Blackpool Tower, the chilli festival, the apple fair and visiting Costco for the first time! I also loved the whole interaction with the duolingo owl, hilarious! Mathew Baynton was superb narrating this audiobook with the perfect emotions and inflections as he was telling the author’s story. He really did become the author for me, making this such a enjoyable listen. I’ve not listened to an audiobook read by him before, but I do know him from the children’s TV show Horrible Histories, remember the King of Bling and the Adam Ant style Dick Turpin? 😉 If you enjoy gentle amusing memoirs you’ll love this on audio. Thanks so much NetGalley and Hachette Audio UK for my digital copy via the NetGalley app.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Ann

    Gentle humour This is an interesting book which hooked me right from the start. The author Rob Temple has a gentle, sweet humour that is endearingly self effacing and devoid of cynicism despite acknowledging that in his past (20 years an alcoholic) he could be quite a mean drunk. Everything seems to have come to a head a year before the book begins when his life fell apart due to his drinking. Although he does touch on his life before, its more to reminisce rather than anything else but it’s app Gentle humour This is an interesting book which hooked me right from the start. The author Rob Temple has a gentle, sweet humour that is endearingly self effacing and devoid of cynicism despite acknowledging that in his past (20 years an alcoholic) he could be quite a mean drunk. Everything seems to have come to a head a year before the book begins when his life fell apart due to his drinking. Although he does touch on his life before, its more to reminisce rather than anything else but it’s apparent that he was seriously unwell. The book tells of his various attempts to leave his comfort zone; from trips to Barcelona, spending time with bees, going to yoga and trying out a flotation therapy tank to name a few. Obviously having the time and money to indulge his whimsies (he is a successful author) and a loving supportive family really help, however his oftentimes crippling anxiety means he literally ceases to function at times. His descriptions of friends and family are beautifully written in particular his mum and dad (he lives with them whilst writing the book). I definitely recommend.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jon Clynch

    Received this as a christmas gift as I'm a fan of Very British Problems (got the books and a t-shirt!), and figured it would be a humorous account of the foibles and quirks of the Great British Public. To some extent, thus is true. But it goes far deeper. Before reading, I had no idea about Rob's personal struggles. At times I found myself hoping it wouldn't become an exercise in self-pity, but I soon realised that, whether Mr Temple meant it or not, the book itself is a sort of theraputic. He r Received this as a christmas gift as I'm a fan of Very British Problems (got the books and a t-shirt!), and figured it would be a humorous account of the foibles and quirks of the Great British Public. To some extent, thus is true. But it goes far deeper. Before reading, I had no idea about Rob's personal struggles. At times I found myself hoping it wouldn't become an exercise in self-pity, but I soon realised that, whether Mr Temple meant it or not, the book itself is a sort of theraputic. He rejoices in the mundane and takes refuge in the ridiculousness everyday situations. It's an honest account, sometimes poignant and at other times hilarious, and I found many of the scenes or emotions he describes to be familiar. Rob comes across as being much older and wiser than he is, which is probably a result of the path he's trod so far. In the end, you can't help but wish him all the best for the future. For a 'funny book' it does have an underlying sense of sadness, but it's a great read nonetheless, showcasing the eccentricity of life and exhorting us all to find joy in the simple things we take for granted.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Bjørn

    Oh Gods, I wanted to like this book so much. As someone whose life is very similar to Temple's, as he describes it in the introduction, I hoped to find some sort of… I don't know. Epiphany? Fun? Entertainment? Relax? Inspiration? The book, sadly, is so mild that none of those things are really in it. The one-liners – tweet-long, generally – are wonderful, but there's approximately one per two chapters. And… that's it. Most of the book reads like a stream of consciousness leading towards nothing i Oh Gods, I wanted to like this book so much. As someone whose life is very similar to Temple's, as he describes it in the introduction, I hoped to find some sort of… I don't know. Epiphany? Fun? Entertainment? Relax? Inspiration? The book, sadly, is so mild that none of those things are really in it. The one-liners – tweet-long, generally – are wonderful, but there's approximately one per two chapters. And… that's it. Most of the book reads like a stream of consciousness leading towards nothing in particular. I wanted to DNF it, but I went on, hoping for an interesting conclusion. Something enriching in a way smarter than a motivational Instagram picture. The feeling that the author and I are clearly related. Jokes. I don't know. Something. The only conclusion I got out of it is that the mild adventures seem to be impossible to describe in a way that would make them sound even mildly exciting. It's not a bad book. It's not even really boring. It…exists. The title describes the contents much better than I wish it did. The bits about Goop were good, though.

  16. 4 out of 5

    lizeindisney

    I almost put this book down a few times through reading it, but I don’t like to DNF anything. So I had to force myself to read it. It’s too secretive to be an autobiography as there’s a lot of unspoken issues that have led to this book. I felt there was something I needed to know beforehand before reading it, and because of that I couldn’t follow it. Based on description alone, I really thought it was something I could relate to and take solace in not being alone, but I think certain triggers in I almost put this book down a few times through reading it, but I don’t like to DNF anything. So I had to force myself to read it. It’s too secretive to be an autobiography as there’s a lot of unspoken issues that have led to this book. I felt there was something I needed to know beforehand before reading it, and because of that I couldn’t follow it. Based on description alone, I really thought it was something I could relate to and take solace in not being alone, but I think certain triggers in the book should have been mentioned up front as they would have caused me not to buy it and not been so disappointed. I love the Very British Problems books, but this was nothing like that. Did not enjoy. Hardback

  17. 4 out of 5

    Luis Olivier Mayorga

    I don't want to be mean but I found it hard to finish. I admit I expected something different, the book is composed of short stories or anecdotes that have really witty and sweet moments, and at the end of them you usually can extract some "moral" of the experience. This was entertaining at the beggining, but as the book continued I started to get a bit bored and I was disappointed it didn't go to a "deeper level" if that makes sense. All in all is an ok book, light, very relatable and can be a g I don't want to be mean but I found it hard to finish. I admit I expected something different, the book is composed of short stories or anecdotes that have really witty and sweet moments, and at the end of them you usually can extract some "moral" of the experience. This was entertaining at the beggining, but as the book continued I started to get a bit bored and I was disappointed it didn't go to a "deeper level" if that makes sense. All in all is an ok book, light, very relatable and can be a good read for a relaxing afternoon, but it wasn't for me. (sorry for typos, english is not my first language <3)

  18. 5 out of 5

    Gowri N.

    This book felt like a disturbingly accurate metaphor for life. Partly sad, partly terrifying, and always farcical. Rob Temple (a.k.a. the @SoVeryBritish guy) documents his year of trying to 'get out and do stuff' to battle mental health issues. Very few plans go according to plan but many surprisingly mild situations end up being pleasant. This is a collection of anecdotes and while Rob touches on MH issues, he doesn't delve too deep into them. That worked fine for me, but I had someone tell me This book felt like a disturbingly accurate metaphor for life. Partly sad, partly terrifying, and always farcical. Rob Temple (a.k.a. the @SoVeryBritish guy) documents his year of trying to 'get out and do stuff' to battle mental health issues. Very few plans go according to plan but many surprisingly mild situations end up being pleasant. This is a collection of anecdotes and while Rob touches on MH issues, he doesn't delve too deep into them. That worked fine for me, but I had someone tell me they were expecting a 'deeper' read. :)

  19. 4 out of 5

    Farahin

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. First book to kick start the year (quite a fitting one, I must say) As someone with a nervous disposition it felt like I’m reading my own thoughts sometimes, and there’s plenty of witty quips to keep me wheezing right up to the end, but it can get upsetting to read about the writer’s struggles with mental health. All the bits with the parents, and his victories in his journey of recovery (mild and wild) are heartwarming though. Hope all goes well for the writer and everybody reading this who are First book to kick start the year (quite a fitting one, I must say) As someone with a nervous disposition it felt like I’m reading my own thoughts sometimes, and there’s plenty of witty quips to keep me wheezing right up to the end, but it can get upsetting to read about the writer’s struggles with mental health. All the bits with the parents, and his victories in his journey of recovery (mild and wild) are heartwarming though. Hope all goes well for the writer and everybody reading this who are suffering from anxiety.

  20. 4 out of 5

    David Ames

    3.8 stars. An odd book really; it's almost like a diary, each chapter telling the story of an event in Rob's day-to-day life, usually detailing how his anxiety is affecting his behaviour/life choices on that particular day. Rob writes in an entertaining manner, but don't go in expecting any kind of story arc, it's more a series of vignettes. It's frequently funny, as you'd expect, and if you have any kind of anxiety there are sections sure to have you nodding in recognition. Oh, and Rob's parent 3.8 stars. An odd book really; it's almost like a diary, each chapter telling the story of an event in Rob's day-to-day life, usually detailing how his anxiety is affecting his behaviour/life choices on that particular day. Rob writes in an entertaining manner, but don't go in expecting any kind of story arc, it's more a series of vignettes. It's frequently funny, as you'd expect, and if you have any kind of anxiety there are sections sure to have you nodding in recognition. Oh, and Rob's parents sound delightful!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kim Jarvis

    A really funny This book wasn't quite what I expected it to be. I really connected with Rob Temple's descriptions of social anxiety, it was good to hear some of my own thoughts from someone else. I was constantly reading bits out to my partner when he said why are you laughing so much? This book made me realise that little adventures can be just as good as trekking across Peru or something, and after all who wants to do that anyway? A really funny This book wasn't quite what I expected it to be. I really connected with Rob Temple's descriptions of social anxiety, it was good to hear some of my own thoughts from someone else. I was constantly reading bits out to my partner when he said why are you laughing so much? This book made me realise that little adventures can be just as good as trekking across Peru or something, and after all who wants to do that anyway?

  22. 5 out of 5

    Isabella May

    Witty but not quite as joyful as expected Don't get me wrong: the writing is superb. I am a huge fan of Very British Problems, and the humour is drier than your nan's Christmas sherry. But for all that, the book has quite a negative down in the dumps tinge to it. Maybe it's just me but I was hoping for a more uplifting examination of travel anxiety and sadly, the story didn't quite deliver. Witty but not quite as joyful as expected Don't get me wrong: the writing is superb. I am a huge fan of Very British Problems, and the humour is drier than your nan's Christmas sherry. But for all that, the book has quite a negative down in the dumps tinge to it. Maybe it's just me but I was hoping for a more uplifting examination of travel anxiety and sadly, the story didn't quite deliver.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Tim Allan

    Its fairly evident that Rob is battling with some serious personal demons. He is witty and humorous throughout but the demons are always there. Lurking. In typical British fashion, he attempts to keep calm and carry on. For me, this made for difficult reading as I was hoping for something light and cheerful. This wasnt. Rob is a talented writer and it shows in the quality of his prose but I think I was misled in respect to the nature of the book. Rob: I hope you're doing okay! Its fairly evident that Rob is battling with some serious personal demons. He is witty and humorous throughout but the demons are always there. Lurking. In typical British fashion, he attempts to keep calm and carry on. For me, this made for difficult reading as I was hoping for something light and cheerful. This wasnt. Rob is a talented writer and it shows in the quality of his prose but I think I was misled in respect to the nature of the book. Rob: I hope you're doing okay!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Anne-Marie

    I really struggled with this audiobook. It was a bit too mild for me. I has to fight with myself to continue listening to it - more because I was curious if there was some sort of diagnosis at the end - two weeks on, and the struggle is real...... it didn't get much better for me. Thanks to #netgalley for gifting #Borntobemild in exchange for an honest review. I really struggled with this audiobook. It was a bit too mild for me. I has to fight with myself to continue listening to it - more because I was curious if there was some sort of diagnosis at the end - two weeks on, and the struggle is real...... it didn't get much better for me. Thanks to #netgalley for gifting #Borntobemild in exchange for an honest review.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Daniel

    Amazingly funny, full of anecdotes but also a sympathetic writing style, I relate very closely to the author in many ways having grown up in the UK and faced similar challenges. I won’t spoil anything but the last chapter nearly moved me to tears as he sums up so eloquently the past, present and future.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Emily Stannard

    I love this guy - he is just so observant! Sad to hear about his struggles with alcohol and anxiety but a big thumbs up for just enjoying living within your comfort zone. It also says volumes about the way social media and our phones control our lives and the importance of breaking free of being pressurised. Some very funny bits which had me chuckling but overall a nice gentle read.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Tess

    I can confirm that this book is beyond relatable, refreshingly honest without being maudlin and far too funny to try and sneaky read at your work desk. I ended up doing that awful shoulder-shaking-snicker thing that arseholes do when they’re trying to show off how much fun they’re having when they’re not supposed to be having it.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Hilary Campbell

    This book is a lovely mix of reality of life- with moments that made me laugh out loud at recognition that I do the same overthinking and setting my expectations out of reach. There is a sometimes sad and painfully honest description of the ways that addictions waylay us, and there is the glimmer of hope and recognition of simple joys.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Moira Burgess

    If you’ve ever suffered from anxiety.... Then this is the book for you, and if you haven’t I’m sure you’ll enjoy it anyway. A gentle romp through life’s ups and downs with lots of very British humour thrown in for good measure

  30. 5 out of 5

    Anneleen

    As a fellow anxious person, I thoroughly enjoyed the way Rob's thoughts were written out and often found myself chuckling away. This meant my partner also had to deal with me reciting some random sentences to him without any further context. I'm sure he enjoyed it as much as I did. As a fellow anxious person, I thoroughly enjoyed the way Rob's thoughts were written out and often found myself chuckling away. This meant my partner also had to deal with me reciting some random sentences to him without any further context. I'm sure he enjoyed it as much as I did.

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