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Topic: Thoughts on Marian Keyes?

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Subject: Thoughts on Marian Keyes?
Date Posted: 8/17/2009 7:06 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2009
Posts: 301
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Someone recommended Marian Keyes to me as an alternative to Sophie Kinsella (I like SK's non-Shopaholic books) while I'm waiting on Twenties Girl.  What do you guys think of her?

Date Posted: 8/17/2009 8:19 PM ET
Member Since: 3/8/2009
Posts: 6,035
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I love her and think her books are quirky and funny.  But I recommended them to someone else on here and they thought they were depressing!  They are similar to SK's non-Shopaholic books, but I would say they are quirkier and the humor is darker, as in they deal with some more serious issues such as drug abuse/rehab, depression, unplanned pregnancy, etc.

Date Posted: 8/17/2009 8:45 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 798
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They are much darker than Sophie Kinsella. Rachel's Holiday is about drug abuse/rehab. Anybody Out There? was good but sort of depressing.

I really liked Watermelon and Sushi for Beginners and The Other Side of the Story. Lucy Sullivan is Getting Married is very funny but very long!

Last Edited on: 8/17/09 8:46 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/18/2009 5:25 PM ET
Member Since: 1/19/2009
Posts: 229
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I was recommended Marian Keyes so I read Anybody Out There? and it was way sadder than I wanted it to be. I wasn't prepared.

I think if you are looking for Sophie Kinsella type books, Jane Green's Jemima J is a good start, you may like other Jane Green books. Jennifer Weiner is also fairly light hearted - Good In Bed is the first one I started with!

Date Posted: 8/18/2009 7:38 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
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Also, check out Gemma Townley. She is Sophie Kinsella's sister. Also, Sophie Kinsella wrote books under the name "Madeline Wickham" (it's her real name) that are cute as well. You may already know that, but they are worth a read! :)

Date Posted: 8/18/2009 10:21 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2009
Posts: 301
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Thank you guys for all of the responses!  I know have 2 Marian Keyes books in my possession -- Sushi for Beginners and Lucy Sullivan is Getting Married.  They're both hefty!  I'm pretty excited :)

I had no idea Gemma Townley is Sophie Kinsella/Madeline Wickham's sister!  What a fun and talented family!  I really enjoyed Little White Lies.  Any suggestions about the next one that I should tackle?  I also really liked Cocktails for Three.  It was just the kind of chick lit I was in the mood for.  A little happily ever after sprinkled in with very real, smart, awesome women.

Jane Green I have had mixed experiences with -- I liked Life Swap a lot, but was meh on The Other Woman and really didn't like Second Chance.  I just got Straight Talking.  Jemima J sounds really fun -- I might pick that one up next.

Do you think British/Irish chick lit is better than American?  I kind of do...is it because of the Jane Austen/Emma influence?  When I think of recent chick lit heroines, Bridget Jones is the first one to come to mind...

Date Posted: 8/18/2009 10:33 PM ET
Member Since: 1/19/2009
Posts: 229
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Jemima J is definitely my favorite Jane Green novel, you should try it for sure.

A lot of people like British/Irish chick lit better... I guess I haven't made a decision either way. Maybe I should consider it? I have quite a few chick lit books waiting to be read but I haven't classified them in particular categories...

Have you read any Red Dress Ink? Many people have great luck with them (I've liked the ones I've read) and they are fairly easy to find if you're willing to check out Goodwill and garage sales.

Date Posted: 8/18/2009 10:35 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
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I love British/Irish chick lit. It is very fun! I love the British slang.

I really liked When In Rome by Gemma Townley. The Importance of Being Married is fun too. Also, you will probably like Mr. Maybe by Jane Green if you haven't read it already.

Date Posted: 8/19/2009 1:03 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2009
Posts: 301
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Someone else on this forum recommended RDI to me, so I've been on the lookout.  Any must reads in that set?  They're all so varied, I have a hard time choosing!  I just picked up Fishbowl, and have a couple of others on their way to me, some British, some American.

I will say, that while I seem to have a preference for British/Irish chick lit (I'm still kind of new to this genre!), I absolutely LOVED How to Sleep with a Movie Star by Kristen Harmel.  I highly recommend it :)  It's the first book I lend to people when they want to borrow something from my (very weird and random) "keeper" shelf.

Date Posted: 8/19/2009 1:49 PM ET
Member Since: 6/18/2008
Posts: 1,050
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If you are looking for must-read RDI's here are a few of my favorites:

Fat Chance

Mike, Mike, and Me

Slightly Single


Date Posted: 8/19/2009 4:34 PM ET
Member Since: 11/15/2008
Posts: 1,705
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I have one on my bookshelf, I wasn't crazy about it, but to each their own. 

Date Posted: 8/20/2009 10:30 PM ET
Member Since: 4/15/2007
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Date Posted: 3/30/2009 9:19 AM ET
Member Since: 4/15/2007
Posts: 71
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Hi Virginia


I posted this list in another thread. It's a list of British and Irish authors who I enjoy. I hope you find some you haven't read before.


Take care,




Patricia Scanlan

Cathy Kelly

Monica McInerney

Melissa Hill

Sheila O'Flanagan

Colette Caddle

Imogen Parker

Annie Sanders

Annett Holliday

Sarah Ball

Marian Murphy

Elizabeth Noble

Martina Reilly

Catherine  Daly

Jane Moore

Isabel Wolff

Lisa Jewell

Anna Maxted

Josie Lloyd

Sharon Owens

Dorothy Koomson

Rosie Thomas


Also check the website for Poolbeg Press-it's all  Irish authors. You'll find tons of great ideas there.





Date Posted: 8/28/2009 1:31 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2009
Posts: 301
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OK -- I finished my first Marian Keyes book last night (Sushi for Beginners).  I rather liked it; I thought Ashling was a great, multi-dimensional character.  Had a love-hate relationship with Cladagh and Lisa, which I think is how I was supposed to feel.  I thought it kind of dragged in some places and I definitely had a harder time getting into it than most other chick lit (for example, I picked up Jemima J this morning and was pulled in immediately) but couldn't wait to see how it ended.  The multiple characters struggling with depression was also a big downer, but, again, I think that is because of the skillful writing.  Had a nice happily ever after, some good plot twists, some laugh-out-loud moments, and lots of fun British and Irish slang.

I have Lucy Sullivan is Getting Married on my shelf (my real bookshelf, not my PBS one).  I think I'll play with some lighter chick lit first, then dive into that one.

Date Posted: 9/11/2009 3:36 PM ET
Member Since: 5/16/2008
Posts: 2,212
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A bump up for this one... I saw she's got a new one coming out called "The Brightest Star in the Sky." I couldn't find a description ANYWHERE, but there are 3 versions popping up to get in line for on PBS. Both have fairly low counts right now so if you can stand putting books that haven't been published yet on your list, it may be a good idea to beat the line. (Two versions are UK ones, one is coming out in 2010 here.)

ETA: If you want the WL for these, you can click through to my WL, then resort by Date/Descending. They're the last 3 ones I added just now.

Last Edited on: 9/11/09 3:37 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/12/2009 11:15 AM ET
Member Since: 4/15/2007
Posts: 396
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There is a description of  The Brightest Stars in the Sky at Amazon.uk   For some reason, it won't allow me to copy and paste.

I have that book wishlisted too :)

If you ever want descriptions of upcoming British releases, please check there, or at bookdepositoryuk.com

I really like bookdepositoryuk.com and bookdepository.com because they have tons of British/Irish authors and they have FREE shipping all over the world. I used to order from amazon.uk, but I can't afford it anymore and the shipping charges are obscene.

Take care,





Date Posted: 9/19/2009 8:34 PM ET
Member Since: 6/13/2009
Posts: 433
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Another great young Irish author is Cecelia Ahern - not on Sherry's lis above.

She wrote PS I Love You which was subsequently made into a movie.

Date Posted: 10/3/2009 10:10 AM ET
Member Since: 12/7/2008
Posts: 2,067
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I love Marian Keyes.  Her books definitely have some dark humor and touch on heavy subjects (divorce, death, substance abuse, politics, etc.)  But I haven't yet found one I don't like.  Anybody Out There? is my favorite, but it is probably the saddest one.  I don't think Lucy Sullivan Is Getting Married is quite as heavy as many of the others (but it's been a while since I've read it.)

I definitely have a preference for Irish/British chick lit over American, and Irish over British.  I'm not sure why... I just always like the books better.  I love Cecelia Ahern, as well.  A few of her books (like A Place Called Here) were a stretch for me when I started them- they definitely have a fairy tale quality to them, and I usually don't like anything that strays from the realm of reality.  But even those books have swept me right in.  Not all of her books are like that, though.

Date Posted: 10/30/2009 7:26 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2007
Posts: 330
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I am also a huge Sophie Kinsella fan and have come to adore the following authors just as much

Jennifer Weiner

Emily Giffin

Melissa Senate

Caprice Crane

Beth Kendrick

Whitney Gaskell

Beth Harbison

Wendy Markham

Meg Cabot

I have not read a book by any of these amazing women that I have not adored!

Last Edited on: 10/30/09 7:26 PM ET - Total times edited: 1