I haven’t read any Marian Keyes books for a while and I’d forgotten what a funny, clever, observant writer she is.
The book is a collection of personal stories, some that have been published in various magazines or newspapers and quite a lot that haven’t been published before. A memoir of sorts and a real mix of hilarious anecdotes, overseas travel, various experiences and other stories that are quite poignant and insightful and give us glimpses into the author’s life.
The book made me laugh out loud and giggle quite a lot at times which all helped to ease the strain of the house sale/move I’m going through at the moment.
Hard to find a favourite funny bit to quote, there are so many.
Marian Keyes is painfully honest and self-effacing throughout with each different tale. There are parts of the book that are reflective and insightful and as if the author has, dare I use the phrase, ‘been on a journey’.
‘I find it difficult to ever be truly at peace, there’s always something that feels like a shark relentlessly on the prowl..’
We hear of her struggle with alcohol in her early years and also that she takes ‘anti-mad’ tablets every day for depression and has suffered a nervous breakdown. There is an underlying sadness at times that gave me a bit of a lump in my throat and some of the stories involve a search for some sort of peace of mind by trying out various alternative therapies and ‘interests’, some with extremely funny, near catastrophic effects. I quite like a bit of ‘beach-house banjo’ too (read the book to find out 🙂 )
I love the way Marian Keyes sometimes alters the spelling of words, ‘fabaliss’ and ‘sangwidge’ to name a few that she Irishizes (pedants, I know there is no such word). I grew up on Merseyside, had Irish grandparents, friends from Irish families and we all Irishized and Scouseified a lot of words ourselves, much to the disgust of the Irish nuns in our Convent school who wanted us all to speak proper English.
The book is quite a lengthy one, really jam-packed with stories and good value but I was sad when it ended and could have just carried on reading more and more…
Happily I’ve since discovered a few books from the author that I haven’t yet read.