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The Sober Diaries

How One Woman Stopped Drinking and Started Living
Narrated by: Karen Cass
Length: 10 hrs and 12 mins
5 out of 5 stars (121 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Like many women, Clare Pooley found the juggle of a stressful career and family life a struggle, so she left her successful role as a managing partner in one of the world's biggest advertising agencies to look after her family.

She knew the change wouldn't be easy, but she never expected to find herself an overweight, depressed, middle-aged mother of three who was drinking more than a bottle of wine a day and spending her evenings Googling 'am I an alcoholic?'

This book is the bravely honest story of a year in Clare's life. A year that started with her quitting booze and then being given the devastating diagnosis of breast cancer. By the end of the year she is booze-free and cancer-free, no longer has a wine belly and is two stone lighter and with a life that is so much richer, healthier and more rewarding than ever before. She has a happier family and a more positive outlook.

Sober Diaries is an upbeat, funny and positive look at how to live life to the full. Interwoven within Clare's own very personal and brilliantly comic story is research and advice as she discovers the answers to questions like:

  • How do I know if I'm drinking too much?
  • How will I cope at parties?
  • What do I say to friends and family?
  • How do I cope with cravings?
  • If I stop drinking, will I lose weight?
  • What if my partner still drinks?

And many more.

©2017 Clare Pooley (P)2017 Hodder & Stoughton Limited

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    5 out of 5 stars

fantastic book

Love, love, love! i cried, i laughed, i related. Such a great book and an inspiring story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Amazing book.

I didn't like the narrator at first but she grew on me. This book has been my best friend in early recovery. I loved this book so much that for the past 9 days I would listen to it in bed, in the car, on the train, at work and every other place that I had an opportunity to pull my phone out. It really puts emphasis on how the sober life does get easier as time goes on. I'm going to miss this book and I'm sad that I finished it so now I'll have to go stalk her blog instead :)

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Fantastic. I

I really enjoyed this book. Very funny in parts and had me feeling emotional too. All up a very worthwhile read.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Positive Story on Getting Sober

Claire tells her story with humour, honesty and compassion. It’s the most positive story of getting sober I’ve read. Loved it. Thanks Claire

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Eb
  • New zealand
  • 15-09-2019

Inspiring

I love love this book. Incredibly inspiring to make you want to quit drinking forever.

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Loved every minute of it

Was a very memorable read made me feel not so alone and has given me so much to look forward to.

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It's okay.

The speaker in this Audio Book is great! She puts on accents & speaks like a child, when it is called for. The book itself is interesting & I did learn from it but the author is in favour of the 12 Steps & this put me off. AA is a cult & is sick!

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Very entertaining

A very well written story which was relatable and also entertaining and witty. Clare was a very likeable heroine and also inspiring. Worth the read (or listen)

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Inspiring

I have a drinking problem and started to hide bottles around the place, even in my wardrobe to avoid on being judged and deemed as a an alcoholic. After listening this Clare's journey i feel really low and frightened that I will get sick from abuse and die at a early age.
Today is day 0 and I will achieve beating this addiction, I will go to AA meetings and follow the 12 step program.
I have joined a 12 week exercise challenge which takes up 3 evenings of the week so this is a great place to start.

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Inspiring story

Loved the diary style of writing. Easy to listen to. Lighthearted but so meaningful to so many in so many ways. Thank you Claire

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  • River Holmes-miller
  • 24-04-2018

The performance makes this one worthwhile...

What made the experience of listening to The Sober Diaries the most enjoyable?

I enjoyed this book, though I believe a lot of my enjoyment came from the narrator, who is excellent. The author is very chummy in her approach, and this was both charming and, at times, off-putting. The author assumes her readers all spend their holidays thumbing through endless stacks of party invitations and deciding where to go on vacation. This is the author's life, and there is certainly nothing wrong with it. However, she seems oblivious to the fact that very few people actually live as she does. The fact that you don't hate the author by the end of the book is a testament to her skills as a writer.

If you’ve listened to books by Clare Pooley before, how does this one compare?

N/A

What does Karen Cass bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

She is an amazing narrator, as she makes the central character seem very likable.

What’s an idea from the book that you will remember?

She described the joys of sobriety very well. The material was consistently encouraging and inspirational and will likely help people who struggle to find meaning in their lives after they stop drinking.

Any additional comments?

A worthwhile listen, despite the author's often myopic worldview.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • J. Hintz
  • 30-12-2018

Not as interesting as several other sobriety memoi

This book is fine, but I just don't find it nearly as interesting as many of the other sobriety memoirs out there. I preferred the Kristi Coulter, Leslie Jamison, and Lisa Smith books over this one. Oh, and Caroline Knapp's "Drinking: A Love Story," possibly the book that invented the genre.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • April Rudder
  • 31-03-2018

Brilliant!

This was such a good read! It has you engaged the whole entire time. I really hated when I got to where I was going cause I just wanted to keep on listening. I honestly felt like I was watching a movie. It’s a very funny heartfelt and very honest look into drinking. I highly recommend this to anyone!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Joy Betler
  • 09-02-2019

OMG

This may be it. As in, I think I'm done drinking, or at least have many reasons to try or try again

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 13-04-2018

This book helped me so much!

I definitely recommend this book to anyone who is trying to stop drinking alcohol. Clare Pooley is so inspirational!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • The Pelican
  • 09-05-2018

1 months sober and Feeling Fabulous!

this book is incredible, it's delightful informative incredibly helpful and makes you feel as though you're part of community of so many people that have gone down this horrendous path. But Claire puts an entertaining side to becoming sober. it doesn't have to all be that bad, we can all get through this with some humor and compassion. Excellent book I would read this again.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 21-03-2019

Stellar work by an amazing author

I stumbled across this incredible book and Clare Pooly at a crucial time. I was sober 10 mos and in AA until August of 2018. I tried the moderate drinking until now but I truly missed my sobriety and the joy that came from being a non drinker. She put it perfectly I had the devil and angel on my shoulders. I was just tired of the energy I was spending on deciding if and where I would drink and how I could control it. Now, I’ve recommitted to my sobriety. I can’t moderate and I love my life without alcohol. The way she explained the waves of emotion that one goes through in the first months of sobriety were spot on. The ups and downs, the introspective piece of the journey. Please read even if you are not considering quitting booze. Her story is so relatable to anyone. I’m 44 and single no kids. She is a mom of three and married and a Brit! I’ve never felt more connected to any author or story before. Just superb and full of hope, hilarity, compassion, and love!!!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • D. Lobo
  • 02-05-2019

An amazing book

Get this in audio book, not only you will hear her lovely Slightly posh London accent but every kind of accent she perfectly impersonates but also how funny and witty she sounds. A great book for someone contemplating sobriety, trying to cut back or dealing with cancer who wants to see everything in a more humorous way. I couldn’t read “the naked mind “ because it was so preachy and judgmental, but this was the opposite. Claire is brilliant!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Kathy
  • 02-05-2018

Day 1

Just the motivation I need! I have such respect and admiration for the author. Enjoyed thoroughly!

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • L.H.
  • 23-01-2018

Authentic

An honest, funny retelling of one woman’s journey to find her authentic self that was hidden by her all consuming life of alcohol. Inspiring and laugh out loud funny.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Rebecca
  • 24-04-2018

Inspirational

this book will make you laugh (out loud!) and likely get you from the get go (it did me!) Clare has helped me start a new AF journey which is exciting and challenging all at once. I wouldn't have started without the help of Clare and her inspired story! if you want to cut down drinking, moderate, stop or just want a good book that will make you laugh at and feel good reading - get this. I found myself missing Clare and her family when I had finished and want to be her friend!!!

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • KS
  • 12-02-2018

Enjoyed whilst reassessing my drinking habits

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

yes - I have recommended to friends. I like the perspective it gives on drinking

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The moment when Clare's friend sent her the AA coin.

Any additional comments?

I unexpectedly enjoyed this book - going into it not really sure whether I had a problematic relationship with drinking and coming out of it completely reassessing my attitude towards it, particularly around my children and how it affects them. This book also manages to remain light hearted and not in the least bit preachy whilst hammering home a very serious message.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • Simon T
  • 14-02-2018

Loved it!

This is a great book and really inspiring for anyone trying to give up the booze and become sober. It's really helped me in my own journey.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Amanda B UK
  • 29-10-2018

A piece of gold

Immensely thought provoking nourishment, superbly written and narrated, I’m reading it again now, I feel this may just be what I need to terminate my deadly relationship with booze. Thank you Clare, Sobergirlone Soberistas xxx

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Gemma Shepherd
  • 06-10-2018

heartwarming and witty

A talented writer who took me on her journey and made me laugh and cry with her
Great book

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 24-07-2018

Funny and empowering

This is a great start for anyone wanting to make a change. You don’t need to be at at home mum or even an alcoholic. It’s for anyone daunted by how life can sometimes overtake you during middle age and make you lose sight of yourself. It’s made me feel like change is possible and that I can take back control.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Anna Davis
  • 07-07-2019

wasn't for me

A bit too "woe is me" for my liking. Perhaps I'm not London yummy-mummy enough. It's certainly a readable book for women in particular social circles.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • k6chris
  • 30-12-2018

Enjoyable (but very yummy mummy)

A well written and brilliantly narrated book, which is very much in the self centred world of the middle class yummy mummy. If that is not your world, you may struggle to get as much out of the book as others clearly have. I did develop huge sympathy for the husband however.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Liz Mitchinson
  • 30-10-2018

Every woman needs to listen to this journey

I am not a drinker , but this story should appeal to anybody who feels their life is slightly out of their Control. Food, work , anxiety anything that causes you to live life “not to the full” means this will be a great listen . I listened because a friend recommended it , an I am recommending it to you!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Linda Drew
  • 10-09-2018

Excellent

Really enjoyed this book, lots of humour and sadness.

Great storyline would definetely recommend it to anyone

1 of 1 people found this review helpful