Friday, 30 June 2017

Women's Literature - Marian Keyes



I do love getting my nose stuck in a book, and the Kindle has allowed me to be ridiculously lazy about it all. I can be lounging in the bath amid the coconut oil slick and oatmeal sludge and finish a book and go straight into shopping mode and before I can reach to top up the hot water, there's a lovely new book all ready to jump into.

Now I will admit that I sometimes miss that 'new book' smell, but I don't miss the weight of 'em or the pages falling out of 'em cos I've folded 'em in half too many times too roughly, and I really don't miss trying to find space on the crammed shelves to house 'em, or the extra packing boxes required to move 'em all from one places to another or just to lug 'em to the Op shops.

And I read all sorts of stuff - autobiographies, crime -who dunits, legal stuff, love stories, period dramas, political satires. Well anything really, and once I start a book I am loath to call it a day before I get to the end. If it starts out badly I just keep reading in the sometimes vain hope that it will improve. Sometimes the wait is LONG.

But the thing about the Kindle store is that it offers you titles it thinks you might like and if like me you have read a couple by the same author, then it's hard for the wee computer to let you forget about 'em, and so book lists grow like topsy.

I have read a good few  books by Marian Keyes, so when 'The Charming Man' was recommended by the little person in my machine, I stumped up the cash and am now mid way through it.

I like the diversity of Ms Keyes women, well, I think mostly they are white middle class Irish Lassies, but they have different personalities and their predicaments are relatable, to me at least, and the stories are wound around female relationships and their usual modern day urban dramas, sometimes involving men, and sometimes pondering where to go for a good hair cut.

Her books have been very easy reads, but this one I am struggling with for a couple of reasons.

The chapters roll along directed by different characters and I guess Ms Keyes was having a little experiment with using different writing styles, cos one of the character's ramblings appear in broken sentences, with so many words missing that I am spending a great deal of my time with my imaginary teacher's red pen, filling in all the blanks, and I don't enjoy this sort of reading. Yeh I left all that marking crap behind me some years ago. If I hadn't found that the next character spoke in full grammatically correct sentences I was gonna have to give the book a miss, but as luck would have it, only one of the women are driving me mad - I know - it's not a long road.

But the biggest problem for me is that the driving force behind the story is that these women have been flung together because of their shared misadventures with some bloke. Yep he is the driving force behind the whole damn thing. Is this Women's Literature?

Up until now I have enjoyed the female-centric nature of Ms Keyes' books. I have enjoyed the unravelling of their relationships and the knitting of new ones. Now I'd just like this fella to face smash a bus so the women can get on with other stuff, but as I am only a third of the way through it, I suppose he is gonna continue to lord it over 'em all for a good while yet. SHIT.

What are you reading at the moment?