The Break – Marian Keyes

Myself and Hugh . . . We’re taking a break.’
‘A city-with-fancy-food sort of break?’

If only.

Amy’s husband Hugh says he isn’t leaving her.

He still loves her, he’s just taking a break – from their marriage, their children and, most of all, from their life together. Six months to lose himself in south-east Asia. And there is nothing Amy can say or do about it.

Yes, it’s a mid-life crisis, but let’s be clear: a break isn’t a break up – yet . . .

However, for Amy it’s enough to send her – along with her extended family of gossips, misfits and troublemakers – teetering over the edge.

For a lot can happen in six-months. When Hugh returns if he returns, will he be the same man she married? And will Amy be the same woman?

Because if Hugh is on a break from their marriage, then isn’t she?

The Break isn’t a story about falling in love but about staying in love.

About the Author:

Marian Keyes (born 10 September 1963) is an Irish novelist and non-fiction writer, best known for her work in women’s literature. She is an Irish Book Awards winner. Over 22 million copies of her novels have been sold worldwide and her books have been translated into 32 languages. She became known worldwide for Watermelon, Lucy Sullivan is Getting Married, and This Charming Man, with themes including domestic violence and alcoholism.

My Review:

I used to devour Marian Keyes books and similar authors throughout my late teens and twenties, in fact I was only reading romantic comedy and chick-lit until I read a psychological thriller and then went completely over to the dark side and haven’t even thought about reading chick-lit for YEARS… until I discovered the wonderful voice of Aoife McMahon narrating Jess Kidd’s The Hoarder which in turn made me look up what other books she’s narrated and The Break miraculously appeared in my Audible Library.

Luckily I had several long car journeys planned to Manchester and Leeds which meant hours of uninterrupted audio and that makes me a very happy listener!

The Break is about Amy and Hugh – a seemingly happy couple, married with 3 daughters, good careers, a close but extremely dysfunctional family and everything on the surface appears to be functioning well.  However, when you look closely cracks are appearing and when Hugh announces he is taking a 6 month break from their marriage, children and life and going to back pack around the world to “find himself” Amy’s world is turned upside down.

Left to cope with her 3 daughters, a busy career in PR, a father with dementia, a total arse of an ex-husband Amy is absolutely completely devastated.  The story flits back and forth between an event that happened 18 months previously and the days/weeks and months after Hugh ups and leaves.  The reader/listeners are taken on an emotional journey which often results in some laugh out loud moments and several gut wrenching teary moments too.

Marian Keyes has created a fabulous, zany and often bonkers family which I absolutely adored listening to and I really hope that Granny gets her own book soon as she is a fabulous character who kept me laughing and smiling throughout.    With some very serious issues being tackled (Abortion. Grief, Mental Illness and Dementia) Marian Keyes brings her own unique, funny and observational wit to the story and I thoroughly enjoyed this book and will definitely be popping over from the dark side more often.