Beth Thomas Cohen: Drop the Act, It’s Exhausting!

by Rachel Baker on November 5, 2015

This is going to be a different type of review – more of a spotlight, really. I was given an opportunity to review Beth Thomas Cohen’s new book Drop the Act, It’s Exhausting! – I took it. To my dismay, I received an uncorrected galley. For those of you who have never seen one of these, they are really tough to get through if you have any sort of attention-to-detail deficit disorder (when there’s a deficit in attention-to-detail, you have a reaction that should be attributed to a disorder). Uncorrected galleys tend to require proofing on the miniscule level that will drive someone with an editorial background insane. Unfortunately for Ms. Cohen, I am working on a project that requires me to have my editor hat on for most of the day, allowing my reviewer hat to collect a bit of dust. Sadly, I’ve been unable to finish reading through the galley.

That said, I read enough to know the premise of the book is good enough to spend the $13.00 on a paperback. I wasn’t sure when I read the summary I would be a good candidate for a possible review, but I was intrigued. I couldn’t help but wonder what the hell a woman in the fashion industry (of all industries) could tell anyone about taking off their masks and dropping the act. Intriguing, isn’t it? Enough for me to take the opportunity for a possible review.

Ms. Cohen delivered an answer – the fashion industry keeps her honest and true to herself. I suspect when you meet her, she’s probably one of the most WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) people you’ve ever met. Though I’m not sure I completely agree with EVERYTHING she writes about in the book, I find her honesty and bluntness refreshing for this type of “better your life” book. Despite being written from a woman’s perspective and addressing women’s challenges, I think the “lessons” about how to stop trying to be someone you aren’t and just accept the lovely imperfections we are, are lessons everyone should embrace. Men, as well as women, also chase the elusive “enough” and need an injection of “embrace the suck” as much as women do.

This book is perfect for [some] women; though, it probably shouldn’t be considered the next great book on feminism. This is one woman’s view of “how things should be” and it only really takes into account the things she has experienced. Drop the Act, Its Exhausting! is not a manual; and I’m not sure it should be treated as such. That said, I absolutely agree that we should never be ashamed or apologetic about talking about how we really feel about anything. The draw of this book is the idea that maybe if we all stopped tiptoeing around the bullshit and just tromped right through it and into the front door, we’d be a more healthy and happy society will less pretense about how much bullshit there really is. (Ps. I’m the one in the family people go to when they want to hear the hard truth, rather than the feel good stuff).

I loved what I read and might buy the book in paperback so I can read the finish product. If I do, I will write a more indepth review.

But for now, here’s a video and some background about the book and the author:

Drop the Act, It’s Exhausting! (Taylor Trade; November 4, 2015, ISBN 978-1-4930-0852-0) is one woman’s call to embrace the imperfections in our lives and air our “improper” thoughts about relationships, love, sex, parenting, careers, self-­- esteem, and self-­-image. By no longer being ashamed or apologetic about how “we really feel,” women will become more aware of who we are and more accepting of ourselves and one another. With wit, candor, and refreshingly blunt observations, Beth Thomas Cohen proves herself the prime example of how freeing, fun, and unifying it can be to drop the act and live a not so put-­- together life.

Beth Thomas Cohen grew up the product of a biracial couple in the suburbs of Manhattan and launched a successful career in the fashion industry. She married a Jewish man and had two beautiful girls.

DROP THE ACT, IT’S EXHAUSTING! is her ode to all of the women out there who wear masks every day.

It covers the following topics with honesty…and lots of wine:
* Love and Marriage
* Pregnancy and Parenting
* Body Image and Aging
* Judging Others
* Not Having it All

Beth Thomas Cohen has been in the fashion industry for sixteen years. As cofounder of the public relations agency B’ squared Public Relations, Beth launched new fashion brands and breathed life into older ones. She previously worked as senior director at Lividini & Co., in-­-house public relations director at the luxury/accessories company Lambertson Truex, and worked in the fashion department at O, The Oprah Magazine.

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