My Favourite Mistake By Marian Keyes

‘My Favourite Mistake’ is the latest book by Marian Keyes and is a Walsh family novel.

Anna has just lost her taste for the Big Apple. She has a life to envy. An apartment in New York. A well-meaning (too well-meaning?) partner. And a high-flying job in beauty PR. Who wouldn’t want all that? Anna, it turns out. Trading a minor midlife crisis for a major life event, she switches the skyscrapers of Manhattan for the tiny Irish town of Maumtully (population 1,217), helping old friends Brigit and Colm set up a luxury coastal retreat. Tougher than it sounds. Newflash: the locals hate the idea. So much so, there have been threats – and violence. Anna, however, worked in the beauty industry. There’s no ugliness she hasn’t seen. No wrinkle she can’t smooth over. There’s just one fly in the ointment – old flame Joey Armstrong. He’s going to be her wingman. Never mind their chequered history. Never mind what might have been. Because no matter how far you go, your mistakes will still be waiting for you.

Marian is back with a bang as this book is just glorious, set against the backdrop of the busting streets of New York to the rural and somewhat miserable Maumtully. This book is about Anna, one of the many Walsh sisters, who after the pandemic decided to reflect on her life and ended back home much to her mother’s disgruntlement. And with no job in sight, she ends up helping her friends with their luxury retreat as they are busy with their sick daughter. But even though the new business will bring some revenue and interest in the small town, some locals are against it and Anna finds herself in hate campaign, and if things aren’t bad enough – ‘the one who got away’ Joey Armstrong is back in her life and as much as she doesn’t want to – Anna wonders what if?

Marian is one of my favourite authors, her books radiate charm, wisdom, love and handles difficult subjects with sensitivity and her dark humour and ‘My Favourite Mistake’ is no different. I have to admit I do think Anna is my favourite of the Walsh sisters, she’s kind, puts others before her and has a personality that I related to. I loved how easily she settled into Maumtully, the locals became her friends and confidants.

The story flicks between the past and present tense from New York and Maumtully, mainly down the difficult relationship that Anna had with her childhood best friend Jacqui, who to be honest, I wasn’t particularly fond off. And then of course there’s Joey, affectionately known as ‘the go boy’, I loved Joey and the interactions with him and Anna made for entertaining reading, as their chemistry sizzled of the pages as they tried to be friends and fight the attraction. I loved how there were so many near moments with the two of them that kept me on my toes as I wondered, was this it, was this the moment?

There’s a fantastic gang of characters in the story from the straight talking Courtney who works in the Broderick where Anna was staying, her dry wit and charm had me laughing whilst the nosiness of the local florist Farrelly, was just a chef’s kiss of writing. He had no problem passing comment on anything and had no apologies at his curiosity into Anna’s life. And of course the wonderful Walsh family were on form with Mammy Walsh leading the troops.

The book is 609 pages long which is quite the read but it’s absolutely worth it. It’s packed with warmth, fantastic characters and with short chapters, so it was easy to keep consuming them. Brimming with humour, drama, love and of course Walsh-isms, ‘My Favourite Mistake’ is a story of reflection, hope and new beginnings and is a tremendous story!

You can pre-order ‘My Favourite Mistake’ from Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 11th April 2024.

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