Book Review: The Winter of Our Disconnect by Susan Maushart

If you have tweens or teens, you may have found yourself wondering about the amount of time they seem to spend plugged in, to the computer, the video games, the cell phone, the iPod. So you can understand why the story of a mother of 3, who pulled the plug, captured my attention. Susan Maushart took the radical position of completely banning computers, video games, iPods, cell phones, and digital cameras from her house for six months. I thought she was crazy, but awesomely courageous. I couldn’t imagine me doing without technology, much less my teenagers. This book traces her journey, with candid looks and both her and her children’s reactions and issues along the way.

I really wanted to love this book. It is honest, a sort of warts-and-all look at a family’s adventures in living without technology. As intriguing as the premise was, I had a few issues with the book. For one thing, you are treated to copious amounts of profanity and Australian slang, from both the mom and the kids. Their values leave a lot to be desired and the mother openly praises her son for his opinions regarding his atheism. The book was at once highly entertaining and interesting and completely frustrating and irritating. There are some amazing statistics and research on brain function, and how technology has changed our kids’ brains. The book is entertaining and informative. If you can deal with the worldly attitudes and language, you will have a very enlightening read.

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