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Better Off Without Him

(Better #1)

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  5,311 ratings  ·  458 reviews
Mona Berman is an expert at Happily Ever After - after all, she's a best-selling Romance writer and happy endings are what she does best. So when her husband of twenty years leaves her for somebody 15 years younger, 30 pounds lighter, and French, she's got a lot of adjusting to do, both personally and professionally. Lucky for her she's got three savvy teen daughters, a fe ...more
Paperback, 261 pages
Published October 10th 2010 by (first published September 10th 2010)
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4.02  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,311 ratings  ·  458 reviews

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Jul 13, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
I almost put this book down after the first two pages. It starts off with Mona complaining about the month of April--taxes, allergies, etc--then describing her three teenage girls, who initially sounded a bit spoiled.

I got the impression that Mona was going to be an overly depressed, beaten-down-by-life heroine who finally finds some bitter type of satisfaction when her husband leaves her and she fixes her personality problems.

Fortunately, I kept reading, and found that my first impression was
Abeer Hoque
Better Off Without Him by Dee Ernst is a terrible romcom of a book about a white New Jersey mother (of 3), wife, and romance author who gets dumped by her caricature of an unkind and cheating husband. I learned the term hen lit (also, hen flick) from this book, and the fact that modern romance novels have as little to do with real sex and real life as the trashy romances of old. Our supposedly hilarious protagonist (she’s not funny, just outspoken) is 40-something yo, not gained more than 10 pou ...more
Sep 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful. Definitely putting this one in the all time favorites category.
Jul 12, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chick-lit, laughs
Mona Berman writes romances and is happy with her wedding and three daughters until her busband tells her he wants a divorce. Mona is completey caught off guard, and as she puts it: “Mr. Arnold,” I said between clenched teeth, “looking into a lighted make-up mirror with a plus-seven magnification is a humbling experience. Having your husband leave you for a younger woman just plain sucks.” Now Morna has to adjust to being single, convince her editor that her new book will sell even though she is ...more
Jul 13, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.75-4 Stars. The ending was to abrupt for me.
Anas Attic  Book Blog
AUDIOREVIEW_betteroffwithout_RECTBetter Off Without Him by Dee Ernst Narrated by Gillian Vance
Romantic Comedy/chick lit/Older Heroine. Stands alone, but there is a sequel that is available.
If you like older heroines with kids, get ready to laugh!

Sometimes a narrator can ruin a book. Sometimes they make it better. In the case of Better off Without Him by Dee Ernst , I have to say the narrator made the story even better. In fact, this is a rare case that I can’t really separate the story from the narration because I just lo
Apr 25, 2012 rated it liked it
No surprises. No shocking plot twists. No complex characters. Written directly from the plug-and-play chick-lit template. But it was a sweet read and I was such a fan of Mona and her friends and family that I enjoyed every page...even laughed out loud multiple times throughout. And at "The End", I smiled.

Oct 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-book
3:75 - 4 Stars *** Audiobook Version ***

This book was slightly different from what I usually read/listen to. It wasn’t a romance. What drew me to the story is it is based on a middle aged mother of three who is thrown back into the single life when her husband of 20+ years decides to leave her for a younger model. She goes through the horrors of learning to date again...several of her dates had me chuckling. I loved her assistant and despised her Ex. My only complaint is the end was very abrupt.
Vikki Vaught
Oct 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My Musings

What a delightful and funny book. It grabbed me from the first page and kept me engaged to the last. I loved Mona. I was rooting for Ben from the beginning. Every now and again, a book comes along that touches one's heart and Better Of Without Him is that book for me. So glad I found this great story. I'll be looking for more books by this amazing author. Happy ☺reading 📚
Tracy Zullo
Aug 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars -- it made me laugh out loud - twice - and smile at the end - 'nough said
Oct 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely loved this! I had several laugh loud moments and took my iPad with me while relocating to other areas because I couldn’t put it down.
Aug 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
It’s not often you come across a a romance book that has the MC a woman of age (That’s a nice way of saying she’s not in her early 20s) that feels enjoyable and fresh. Better Off Without Him by Dee Ernst is both enjoy and fresh and loaded with laugh out loud moments.

So the story is about Mona, a 45 year old romance writer, whose husband up and leaves her for a 15 years younger, 30 pounds lighter, and French woman. Of course she is blindsided and devastated. She manages to pick herself back up,
Nov 13, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: romance
Better Off Without Him has a lot going for it. While the plot itself is nothing new (husband leaves wife for younger woman, woman has some hilarious dates/hijinks, woman learns to love herself and finds someone she can be happy with), what makes it stand out is the phenomenal tone. It reads like you're talking to your snarky yet hilarious best friend--the one who is perfect at summing up people with a clever phrase.

I also enjoy that the book gives a nod to the tropes of the romance genre. The ma
May 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was just a normal April when Mona’s husband of twenty years, Brian, announced rather casually that he was moving out and wanted a divorce. He has fallen in love with a younger woman.

Their three teenaged daughters, Miranda, 16, and 14-year-old twins Lauren and Jessica, had just left for school, and Mona had settled in to think about writing her next novel. A best-selling romance novelist with the pen name Maura Van Whalen, she had decided to switch from historical romance to something contempo
Apr 04, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not really into Romance genre however I would say this is more of a RomCom than a "Romance" book. Very witty and I had several "LOL" moments. The book was very easy to read and I found it refreshing that the character was not a 20 something.

There are older readers who love to read a good RomCom that they can maybe relate better too.

Mona Berman has it all—a twenty-year marriage, a successful career as a romance novelist, and three teenage daughters. But when her husband, Brian, leaves her for so
Sep 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
Rating: 4/5 stars
Recommended? Yes

Poor Mona is a forty-five year old romance writer, wife, and mother to three teenage daughters. Then comes the day her husband walks into the kitchen and calmly tells her that he is leaving her for a younger woman. What seems to be a shattering moment in her life actually turns out to be a blessing in disguise. Out of the dating business for twenty years, Mona has to find a way to get her life back on track. All this while dealing with her impending divorce, daug
Delena Silverfox
Feb 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I can't remember the last time I've said, "I effing love this character!" at the 25% mark of a book. I knew at that point I was going to love this book.

Mona is classic, and even though in the beginning it seems she's getting shafted, her husband leaving is the best thing to happen to her. Naturally.

I think what made this book so great for me were the characters. Patricia was awesome. Every woman needs a friend like her. Mona's assistant Anthony was the one that made me literally laugh out loud
A Book Vacation
Aug 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
This is a really cute, witty tale about Mona Berman finding life after being cast aside by her husband of twenty years. I enjoy a strong female lead, and Ernst does not disappoint in her character, Mona, whose quirky ways and strong sense of self worth make her triumph over her disastrous break up. I loved that Mona didn’t stop living, but instead began, dating, writing a new type of novel, and ultimately finding herself throughout the course of the story, and I highly enjoyed it.

I absolutely ad
Jul 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2012, kindle
Better Off Without Him is one of the funniest chick-lit books I’ve read in recent memory. Ernst starts with a great cast of characters: the protagonist, Mona, is a strong woman with a great talent for recognizing the humor in life, even in negative experiences. She has to be, with her three teenage daughters, each with unique personalities that keep Mona guessing and with the typical teen problems of being on the cusp of adulthood (with some very adult like insights), yet still needing parental ...more
Apr 13, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I picked up this read when it was being offered as a deal of the day, or something like that, but I just got around to reading it. I knew that it was a lighthearted funny read, which was exactly what I was in the mood for. It is also my first read by this author, and I now know that it won't be my last. I wasn't so sure as I was reading the first couple of pages, it peaked my interest and it picked up right away, completely holding me attention with humor, engaging characters, and witty banter b ...more
Apr 05, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Irissska by: Amazon
Well, the book was just ok but the idea is great. I mean who needs these men :-). Happiness is not something dependent on having a husband. Happiness is about living life you want to live. And maybe it will be done better without him. :-)

P.S.: I am happily married for 8 years so I say this not because I want to convince myself. This is not about every man and even not about good or bad husbands, it is about being able to be happy even if you don't have one (well, in our country it is a serious
Mar 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely loved this book! It isn't often a book makes me laugh so much, but, this one did.

Mona is a great character. I love that she moved on with her life and never looked back after her husband calmly tells her he wants a divorce after 20 years of marriage. The supporting characters are awesome as can't help but love them all!

Thankfully the sequel "Better Than Your Dreams", is now available so I can start reading it immediately!
Annette Jackson
Apr 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mona is something else!

I liked everything about this story line. Mona is real, funny, a little naive, a loyal friend, and a great mom! I liked the fact that I couldn't tell who she would end up with, until the end. I enjoyed how she dated losers, but didn't waste time trying to make the relationships work. Her relationship with Doug was awesome! Makes me want to try something like that, (syke!)...I plan to try other books by Dee
Mar 18, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: best-lol-moments
Had some chuckle parts and LOL moments. Anthony was great, him and his name giving. The best is still Aunt Lily. She was hilarious! My favorite part was when she was talking about the husband.
"... My heavens, you even had to schedule his colonoscopy last year. I mean, the man couldn't arrange for a tube going up his own ass. Useless...." I couldn't stop laughing.....
This was simply fun. I laughed lots, loved the not-every-sweaty-detail sex scenes, then recommended to my friends.And reviewer Alexa is right: you want to put it down in the first few pages. But don't. You would miss all that howling with hoots that has your family coming at a run to give you the look. Could be a guilty pleasure, but I refuse to hide this gem under any bush.
Aug 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This was a FANTASTIC book! Dee Ernst writes like I think and talk. Her characters are witty and sarcastic and I hope she continues to write. I devoured this book and was sad to put it down. If you want a light, funny read with great characters who think like most of us talk then I highly recommend it!
Denise Bills
Apr 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Awesome story

I loved her writing style and I was instant drawn into her life. I found myself laughing,crying and cheering for as she moved on life and opened herself to new experiences. She is better off without him.
Aug 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is not my usual genre but I adored it!!! Such a cute read. The characters were entertaining and likable without being too perfect. This book just made me feel good!

Only downside was a couple of typos but nothing serious enough to interfere with enjoying the story.
Beth Annon
Jul 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fun entertaining and real!

Great read. The story was real and entertaining. Makes you want to grab her next book and start all over again. One of the best romance/life books I've read in a long time.
Mar 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
While it won't win a Pulitzer, it's funny and a nice fast read at the beach or on a plane. Careful though, you'll laugh out loud many, many times. It was a very good light hearted book with characters you will just love!
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The Reader's Bar: May Book Discussion-Better Off Without Him 5 14 May 10, 2013 07:22AM  
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  • This Time Forever
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  • Worth Lying For
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  • Crazy Love (Looking for Love, #2)
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  • Work for Hire
  • Betting on Hope
  • Lucky at Love: Some Guys Just Never Give Up...
  • Jackpot!
  • Suburban Task Force
  • Sleeping with Paris (A Paris Romance Book 1)
  • License to Thrill
  • Happy Hour
  • Back To U
  • Happy Hour

Dee Ernst was born and raised in New Jersey, which explains a great deal about her attitude towards life. She loved reading at a very early age, and by the time she was ten she had decided to become a writer. It took a bit longer than she expected.

She went off to college, moved around a bit, had a job or two, a husband or two, and a daughter or two. It was the birth of her second daughter at the a

Other books in the series

Better (2 books)
  • Better Than Your Dreams
“to school that morning. On cue - that is, late” 0 likes
“northern New Jersey, April can either be awash with daffodils or buried under a foot of snow, and waiting to see which way it will go kills me. I hate the April version of winter—some days, that nip of spring teases the air and gets you thinking about warm sunshine, but mostly it’s just cold enough to be miserable. The snow turns black and ugly in about six minutes, and the salt used on the roads gets in between the pads of my dog’s feet. Ever try washing the feet of a sixty-pound lump of wet fur? Whimpering, quivering wet fur? No fun at all. On the flip side, what if it does get warm and sunny right away? That whole process of morphing out of winter woolies and sweaters and scarves” 0 likes
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