The Woman Who Stole My Life – Marian Keyes

I bought this book because years ago I read ‘Watermelon’ by Marian Keyes and I remembered laughing out loud and this warm fuzzy feeling.

‘The Woman Who Stole My Life’ is probably typical Marian Keyes story, it’s about Stella – a woman with kids, an ex-husband, work problem, compulsive eating issues verging on disorder, meets The One. It is a bit ironic and entertaining while you read it; it’s strongly rooted in the tradition of ‘Bridget Jones’. One must admit that Marian Keyes knows how to write to keep the reader entertained if not by the action then by dialogues or witty descriptions. She keeps the pace well, the story jumps between past and present events, explaining how Stella got to where she is now. In general a decent read in terms of language, in terms of story a bit over the top and too fantastic and a complete disaster when it comes to message. Don’t get me wrong I do not expect enlightenment from a romance, normally I only look forward to easy decently written entertainment, but in this case it’s so in your face. While I read it everything seemed ok, but when I finished I started thinking about this book and that’s where the problem started.

What is this book saying? It says a lot of things and I don’t like a single one of them. It says women as miserable when they’re alone; they’re irrational and insecure, suspecting everyone of betrayal and they overeat when they’re unhappy. Women should always put their family first and if they’re unhappy in their marriage and decide to end it it’s solely their fault. Men on the other hand are either chivalrous and responsible for making money or are completely immature and aggressive, blaming everyone around for their failures.

No career is worth sacrificing the life for and we should enjoy small things because we all dream about this small cottage with our perfect man who will earn the money so we can entertain the guests, look pretty and walk our Labrador on the beach. How gemütlich….
And yes, knowing at least one earlier book by Keyes I should’ve known what I’m getting into, but I think the world moved on from Bridget Jones and the like, while Keyes stayed there and something I enjoyed guilt free around 15 years ago, is now not only empty calories but also leaves bitter aftertaste.

Photo by Violetta Kaszubowska

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