Newest Review: ... This looks like being her long term prospect until her friend Emily, a struggling scriptwriter, invites Maggie to spend a few weeks with he... more
Angels - Marian Keyes
Member Name: cheryl59
Angels - Marian Keyes
Advantages: fun enjoyable read
Disadvantages: no real surprises
Marian Keyes is the master (or should that be mistress ?) of chick-lit so - as long as you pick this book up with that in mind, you'll love it.
Browsing along the spines of the books on the shelf in the bookshelf, you'll just come across yet another pale pink book with a vaguely romantic drawing of a girl in a little black dress and, inkeeping with the title, a pair of feathery angel wings drawn on. *Big yawn ! *
I was expecting tales of girls out on the town, with a healthy dose of romance and probably heartbreak on the way, but all finishing up with a happy end, as usual. And thinking about it, you could basically define it as that. But somehow there seems to be a bit more to it this time, there's a slight undercurrent in the story with a bit more to get your teeth into. The romance is there, and the soul-searching, and the girlie laughs (it wouldn't be chicklit if there weren't) but as well as the laugh-out-loud moments when you really identify with the character, there are also some more poignant moments that will surely strike a chord with many of the female readers.
The story revolves around Maggie Walsh, the "nice sensible daughter" of the family, who suddenly finds out that her husband is having an affair and takes off to Los Angeles (hence the title) to stay with a friend while she decides what to do. Her decision to break the mould and be wreckless for a bit leads her to meet a wealth of colourful characters, several of whom she has romantic dalliances with, as she goes out partying and discovering the American lifestyle in Los Angeles ... but when her real life catches up with her (on a direct flight from Ireland), she has to face her demons and decide what to do for the best.
The book is just like Los Angeles, where it is set - on the surface, everything is "shiny, happy people", fun and frolics, nothing is serious and the sun always shines, but scratch away the surface and there is also pain and suffering, depression and heartache and life not always turning out the way you want. Some of the minor characters are hilarious and the dialogue is so realistic and believable, that at times you could imagine being on a girlie night out and listening to your mates telling you all about their latest escapades.
I wouldn't go as far as to say there is any suspense at the end, but you do wonder who she'll end up with (if anyone) and you have a real "awww that was nice" feeling at the end.
Flicking through the pages at the end that advertise Marian Keyes other books, I noticed that Maggie's sister Rachel, who only has a bit part in this story, is the central character in another of Marian Keyes' books, "Rachel's Holiday". I'd heard of this book and always taken the title at face value, assuming it related the usual romantic adventures of a girlie holiday, but from reading the blurb, I see that it actually tells the tale of Rachel going into detox.
And that, I suppose, is why Marian Keyes is so successful - all the classic chick-lit elements are there, you'll get what you expect, but there is also a healthy dose of realism and grittiness along with the romance and humour. It's a great novel for when you fancy something a bit lightweight and gives you a real "feel-good" feeling at the end.
482 pages, £7.99, published by Penguin
Summary: a great lightweight read