Books

The Break by Marian Keyes

Marian Keyes is one of those writers whose work I am aware of – I mean, she’s one of the most popular authors out there, how can you not be? – but which I don’t read very often. I’m fairly sure I must have read something of hers at some point before this, but if I have I can’t remember what it was. So when FMCM sent me a review copy of The Break I was very much coming at it with an open mind and few prior expectations.

And so I settled down with a notebook and a drippy-wine-bottle candle at the ready, and I started to read.

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Personal, Weekly Round-Ups

The Week I Broke One Of My Resolutions

I usually start the year with resolutions. In the past I was very good at keeping them, then I gradually got worse at it, and for the past couple of years I’ve been kind of hit-and-miss about it. This year I began with only two actual resolutions, both of which I’ve kept, but I also made some promises to myself, which I haven’t. I called these ‘promises’ because I wanted to say I didn’t have many resolutions this year, but really that’s just semantics and they were resolutions all along.

Confused yet? Yeah, so am I. I’m hopped up on a large cocktail of pills and have no idea if this is making sense.

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Books

2016 Reflections – Books (Biographies)

I’ve never really been into reading biographies. With the exception of pretty much anything about the life of Kierkegaard, I generally stay away from true stories and read either academic non-fiction, or novels.

But this year quite a lot of biographical accounts have ended up on my reading list, and several of them were amazing enough that I decided to do a whole new Reflections post for them.

I’m defining ‘biography’ quite loosely here, to mean anything where the author draws on personal experience (either their own or someone else’s) to discuss the central premise of the book.

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Books

The Truth by Neil Strauss

This intriguing book was sent to me by a friend, who thought (correctly) that I’d enjoy it.

My friend caveated the recommendation with the view that the book should have been called ‘MY truth’ rather than ‘THE truth’, and I’d agree with that. But it was interesting all the same.

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Personal

A Year Of Celebrations

I was a little scared of 2016, for entirely superstitious reasons that make no sense. The worst two years of my life to date have been 1996 and 2006, during both of which I had brushes with death that were less like brushes and more like full-blown fights.

2015 was a good year, following an awful one in 2013 and a half-half one in 2014, so my brain naturally decided to tell me that this meant 2016 had to be completely awful. And the year did get off to a bit of a stressful start, it’s true. But over the past couple of days I’ve realised that I have a lot of causes for celebration this year.

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La Vida Eclectica

One of those days that feels like a novel

It’s Monday morning. I wake up to the sound of seagulls screeching outside the window, sun straining through the blind.

I work for a bit, perched on the edge of the single bed in the hotel room with a bright pink laptop on my knee and my feet resting on the chair opposite, tapping out replies to emails and deciding on my Out Of Office message.

By 10am I’m on a bus through the countryside, familiar places passing by the window, invoking memories that have lain dormant since I last returned almost three years ago.

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