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Extended Audio Sample Please Don’t Eat the Daisies Audiobook, by Jean Kerr Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (2,352 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Jean Kerr Narrator: Marni Webb Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: January 1998 ISBN: 9781538467084
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This collection of essays observes the perils of motherhood, wifehood, selfhood, and other assorted challenges. Since its publication in 1957, it has sold millions of copies and has been adapted into a Broadway play, a film, a TV series, and now an audiobook. Jean Kerr’s parodies of the clichéd 1950s prescription for glamorous or maternal feminine behavior still resonate today as we enter the twenty-first century.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “This timeless audiobook, originally published in 1957, sounds as fresh as a daisy…These tapes sound like two hours of stand-up comedy. Webb delivers it in a deadpan manner with appropriate pauses for laughter. Her tone conveys the frustration and hilarity of being a young mother trying to survive in a rough environment.”

    AudioFile

  • “These 1957 vignettes into the Kerr household, read here with ease by Marni Webb, suggest that without a heavy dose of humor, any Mom is liable to end up on a psychiatrist’s couch at $25 an hour.”

    Library Journal

  • A #1 New York Times Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Denise | 2/13/2014

    " This is a book of essays I picked up at a small-town library book sale in Oregon. Most of the essays are on motherhood. The book and the author's life are the basis for the Doris Day classic by the same title. Many essays on motherhood get sappy, or sarcastic, or long-suffering. Jean Kerr got it just right. I would have loved to have been a visitor in her home. I'll definitely look for more essay compilations by her. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alyson Farmer | 2/12/2014

    " I was given this book as a gift for my birthday. Having seen the Doris Day movie that the book was based on I knew that I would enjoy it. Unfortuately, I had a lot of other books piled up to read and it took me a little while to get to it. I did eventually read it and found it very enjoyable and funny. I especially got a kick out of the author's thoughts on raising children. Sadly, the pressure I felt to get it read did take away part of the joy of reading it for me. I need to go back and watch the Doris Day movie again! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Heather Layne | 2/8/2014

    " I believe the short stories in this book were originally published as magazine articles. This means they're full of jokes and references that were very current at the time but are now just very dated. There were some funny bits, but as I am not a mother, playwright, wife of a critic, 1960's housewife, or New Yorker, a lot of it went over my head. Meh. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lynnea Taylor | 2/8/2014

    " This was a funny book, though the references in it are outdated and many unknown by myself. Still the humor came through fine - especially about parenting. A good light, fast read for a few chuckles. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Katelyn | 2/4/2014

    " This contains funny stories about raising kids, motherhood, and life. Even funnier is Shirley Jackson's "Life Among the Savages". "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Amanda | 2/2/2014

    " Funny especially for the dated commentary yet the children's antics are timeless. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jeanette | 1/24/2014

    " My mom always had this sitting around on one bookcase or another when I was growing up. So of course I eventually read it, the way you do when you're a kid and you read whatever the folks have just to see what it's all about. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 ara133photography | 1/23/2014

    " This book was written about 20 years before I was born, but its humor is timeless! I read sections when I need a little pick-me-up of funniness, and this never fails to deliver. Jean's ability to bring out the humor in every day situations is fantastic, and her writing is very relatable. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mia | 1/23/2014

    " I found this while skimming through the used books at the Capitol Flea Market...I had always heard of it but, never read it. It is cute and full of loads of funny stories of motherhood, dieting and the life of NYC in the 50's and 60's. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Nancy | 1/21/2014

    " I picked this up at a book sale thinking it may have been the book that inspired the TV show (am I old or what?). and I was right. It's based on Kerr's life with her husband - a college professor by day and a play critic by night; herself - a playwright; and their 4 children - all boys, 2 of which are twins. I love Kerr's ability to see humor in everyday mundane things like the family dog. "The first dog I remember well was a large black and white mutt that was part German Shepherd, part English sheep dog, and part collie - the wrong part in each case." Or finding their dream home, which turns out to be more of a 16 century castle thing. "In the beginning, we made the usual mistake of looking at houses we could afford." Or, her own children. "....we had been looking for a larger house, and we knew what we wanted. I wanted a house that would have four bedrooms for the boys, all of them located some distance from the living room - say in the next county somewhere." Even tho this book was published in 1957, it's as timely today as it was then. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jen | 1/15/2014

    " Was one of those random books in our house as a kid, probably a hand-me-down from my grandmother, and though I thought several of the stories were funny then, the older I get and the more children I have, the more hilarious they are. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Melissa Leatherwood | 1/11/2014

    " I've read this book several times, and I always laugh. It is my kind of humorous writing for sure. A must read for every mother .... especially on those days you need a good laugh. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Allyson | 1/10/2014

    " Written for the 50's...not as witty and funny as stated...but I guess it may have been back in the day. The Doris Day movie may have been inspired by this book, but the movie was much more fun. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Martha | 1/9/2014

    " I'm so glad I grew up in the 60's. I remember Tab Hunter and read Marjorie Morningstar. It was a better time to be a child and a parent. It was the end of an era of independence. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Amanda | 1/8/2014

    " Funny especially for the dated commentary yet the children's antics are timeless. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dottie | 1/4/2014

    " Light, comedic and enjoyable -- read many years ago. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lark | 1/4/2014

    " Precursor to Erma Bombeck. Breezy, airy style, quick read. Seriously covet the house. Interesting section on spanking.... this was, apparently before spanking was considered bad... "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Allyson | 1/2/2014

    " Written for the 50's...not as witty and funny as stated...but I guess it may have been back in the day. The Doris Day movie may have been inspired by this book, but the movie was much more fun. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Evy | 12/29/2013

    " This book was published in the 50's. I like to believe that Jean Kerr was the one who first wrote this kind of genre during her time. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 G-- | 12/26/2013

    " Are you a 50's era Doris Day housewife? This book should be your BIBLE. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Keryn | 12/19/2013

    " This book is definitely dated but has some funny moments and I appreciated her writing style. Quick read and focuses on being a wife and mother in the 50's. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Magaroni | 12/6/2013

    " Please Don't Eat the Daisies is a witty, colorful, well-written book about a woman's efforts to contain her four boys and her husband within the limits of sanity. It's definitely a must read! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Marlene Leblanc | 12/6/2013

    " I read this book a long time ago. Thought it was funny. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Keryn | 12/2/2013

    " This book is definitely dated but has some funny moments and I appreciated her writing style. Quick read and focuses on being a wife and mother in the 50's. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rebecca | 9/7/2013

    " In 1981 I presented a monologue from this book to an audience of 60+... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rebecca Behar-johnson | 8/16/2013

    " I laughed til I cried. Still have a dog eared copy that I pick up once in a while when I need to cheer myself up. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Trish | 2/3/2013

    " Witty and fun - this collection of essays shows a woman who retains her sense of self (and humor) while acknowledging the overwhelming nature of parenthood. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Evy | 1/23/2013

    " This book was published in the 50's. I like to believe that Jean Kerr was the one who first wrote this kind of genre during her time. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sarah Sammis | 1/13/2013

    " Laughed myself silly. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 ara133photography | 1/9/2013

    " This book was written about 20 years before I was born, but its humor is timeless! I read sections when I need a little pick-me-up of funniness, and this never fails to deliver. Jean's ability to bring out the humor in every day situations is fantastic, and her writing is very relatable. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Martha | 12/18/2012

    " I'm so glad I grew up in the 60's. I remember Tab Hunter and read Marjorie Morningstar. It was a better time to be a child and a parent. It was the end of an era of independence. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Marts (Thinker) | 11/22/2012

    " An enjoyable family classic, also a movie starring Doris Day..... "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dottie | 10/7/2012

    " Light, comedic and enjoyable -- read many years ago. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 G-- | 8/20/2012

    " Are you a 50's era Doris Day housewife? This book should be your BIBLE. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mia | 8/12/2012

    " I found this while skimming through the used books at the Capitol Flea Market...I had always heard of it but, never read it. It is cute and full of loads of funny stories of motherhood, dieting and the life of NYC in the 50's and 60's. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Magaroni | 7/19/2012

    " Please Don't Eat the Daisies is a witty, colorful, well-written book about a woman's efforts to contain her four boys and her husband within the limits of sanity. It's definitely a must read! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Diane | 7/4/2012

    " An old but enjoyable book about motherhood. A bit different from the movie, but it provided some good laughs nevertheless! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Marts (Thinker) | 3/24/2012

    " An enjoyable family classic, also a movie starring Doris Day..... "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lynnea Taylor | 3/17/2012

    " This was a funny book, though the references in it are outdated and many unknown by myself. Still the humor came through fine - especially about parenting. A good light, fast read for a few chuckles. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Katelyn | 1/27/2012

    " This contains funny stories about raising kids, motherhood, and life. Even funnier is Shirley Jackson's "Life Among the Savages". "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lark | 12/18/2011

    " Precursor to Erma Bombeck. Breezy, airy style, quick read. Seriously covet the house. Interesting section on spanking.... this was, apparently before spanking was considered bad... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Marlene Leblanc | 12/5/2011

    " I read this book a long time ago. Thought it was funny. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Michelle | 11/13/2011

    " Couldn't finish it. It rambled too much. It had strokes of brilliance, but they were too far and too few between for my tastes. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sherry (sethurner) | 11/10/2011

    " I read this when I was in high school and then reread it recently. Some of the humor is dated, but much is still fresh and fun to read. It's a good look at life in the 1960s as well. IT might pair well with Shirley Jackson's Raising Demons and Life Among the Savages. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Trish | 7/5/2011

    " Witty and fun - this collection of essays shows a woman who retains her sense of self (and humor) while acknowledging the overwhelming nature of parenthood. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sherry (sethurner) | 6/1/2011

    " I read this when I was in high school and then reread it recently. Some of the humor is dated, but much is still fresh and fun to read. It's a good look at life in the 1960s as well. IT might pair well with Shirley Jackson's Raising Demons and Life Among the Savages. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Marjorie Campbell | 5/24/2011

    " Jean Kerr's collection of humor essays is a fun read. Many of the essays are unrelated to each other and a couple are esoteric with play critic humor that did not make much sense to me. But the essays on her family life are terrific. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ginny | 4/23/2011

    " I remember reading this as a young mother. Much needed laughs. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ginny | 3/22/2011

    " I remember reading this as a young mother. Much needed laughs. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Allyson | 3/3/2011

    " Written for the 50's...not as witty and funny as stated...but I guess it may have been back in the day. The Doris Day movie may have been inspired by this book, but the movie was much more fun. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jeanette | 11/8/2010

    " My mom always had this sitting around on one bookcase or another when I was growing up. So of course I eventually read it, the way you do when you're a kid and you read whatever the folks have just to see what it's all about. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 ara133photography | 8/23/2010

    " This book was written about 20 years before I was born, but its humor is timeless! I read sections when I need a little pick-me-up of funniness, and this never fails to deliver. Jean's ability to bring out the humor in every day situations is fantastic, and her writing is very relatable. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jen | 6/23/2010

    " Was one of those random books in our house as a kid, probably a hand-me-down from my grandmother, and though I thought several of the stories were funny then, the older I get and the more children I have, the more hilarious they are. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mollie *scoutrmom* | 6/5/2010

    " A collection of extremely humorous essays, and still relevant today, though the references in them are sooo fifties dated (25 cent magazines?).

    Funny as all get out. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Diane | 10/17/2009

    " An old but enjoyable book about motherhood. A bit different from the movie, but it provided some good laughs nevertheless!
    "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Marjorie | 9/12/2009

    " Jean Kerr's collection of humor essays is a fun read. Many of the essays are unrelated to each other and a couple are esoteric with play critic humor that did not make much sense to me. But the essays on her family life are terrific. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Trish | 7/16/2009

    " Witty and fun - this collection of essays shows a woman who retains her sense of self (and humor) while acknowledging the overwhelming nature of parenthood. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Keryn | 6/24/2009

    " This book is definitely dated but has some funny moments and I appreciated her writing style. Quick read and focuses on being a wife and mother in the 50's. "

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About the Author
Author Jean Kerr

Jean Kerr (1922–2003) was an Irish-American author and playwright born in Scranton, Pennsylvania. Her collection of humorous essays, Please Don’t Eat the Daisies was a bestseller and was adapted into a film starring Doris Day and David Niven. It was also later adapted into a sitcom. Her play, Mary, Mary ran for over a thousand performances, and for a time, held the record for the longest running non-musical play on Broadway. It was later adapted into a film starring Debbie Reynolds.