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Jet2's Summer Book Club – Spotlight on: My Favourite Mistake by Marian Keyes

 

We've partnered with Penguin Books to bring you all the best reads this summer, plus a bumper prize! This week, we're checking out Marian Keyes’ newest novel. Let’s turn the page...

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Searching for your next summer beach read? Look no further! As Penguin said themselves, this isn’t just a romantic comedy, but also a piece of social commentary. Her protagonist’s voice is crystal cut with observations about gentrification, sexism and an economic system that tells women they are nothing without expensive serums and Peloton machines.

It’s all about Anna Walsh, who seemingly has a dream life – according to everyone else. She lived in New York, had a long-term boyfriend and the best job in the world, working as a highly successful beauty PR. So why did she decide to take a flamethrower to the lot? Now she's back in Dublin, living with her parents. She's 48, with no partner, no job and no direction. Anna's lost her purpose. She needs a new challenge to help her fall back in love with life again. So, when an opportunity arises to solve a PR crisis in the tiny town of Maumtully, Anna leaps at the chance. But will the appearance of an old love interest derail her plans?

Marian Keyes 2021 credit Dean Chalkley

About the author

Marian Keyes is a bestselling author with millions of devoted readers from around the world. She’s written some of the most genre-defying novels of the past 30 years – including Rachel’s Holiday, Anybody Out There and Grown Ups. In addition to her 15 previous novels, Marian has also written three collections of journalism, upon which the hit BBC Radio 4 show Between Ourselves was based. Plus, she co-hosts the popular show Now You’re Asking, with actress Tara Flynn for BBC Radio 4. And in 2022, she was named the British Book Awards Author of the Year. Marian lives in Dún Laoghaire, Dublin. My Favourite Mistake is her sixteenth novel.

Q&A with the author

What memorable experience from your travels directly inspired a scene in one of your books?

“In my novel Grown Ups, about a big family who holiday together, travel features a lot. A holiday I spent with my siblings and their kids in a villa in Tuscany was the influence of the ‘Italian’ part of that book: the gorgeous house, the beautiful grounds, the weather, the meeting locals. But it was a guided tour that my husband and I did in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence that inspired the beginnings of attraction between two of my characters, Nell and Ferdia. The tour was so interesting because the guide made it all about people – the artists who painted the pictures, the patrons who commissioned them and the people who featured. Nell is a set designer, so she loves art, and her stories and explanations of the exhibits in the gallery bring her and Ferdia closer.”

Which three people would be your dream travel companions and why?

“My husband, because he can read maps, figure out local bus routes and understand different currencies. My sister, Caitriona, because she’s a total people person – she could get conversation from a stone wall. With her around, there would definitely be adventures. And my sister Rita-Anna, because she’s an expert haggler.”

What’s your summer read?

You Belong With Me by Mhairi McFarlane – I love her books passionately, and this is her best yet.”

What are your three top holiday essentials?

“Earplugs (I can hear grass grow and you never know what kind of racket might be coming from the next room while you’re trying to sleep). A Kindle loaded up with books. And – yes, I’m a princess – a room fragrance spray: this goes back to when I used to do long book tours, especially in the US, travelling from city to city, barely knowing where I was. No matter how grim the hotel was, a couple of squirts of my favourite fragrance made it feel more like home.”

Reviews

'Keyes is a powerhouse' - The Sunday Times

'Warm-hearted and deftly plotted page-turner. A celebration of kindness: that of family and friends' - Sunday Telegraph

'Explodes with joyful humanity on every page' - Sarah Pascoe

'What heaven... wish it could go on forever' - Nigella Lawson

'Unbelievable... so much talent' - Chris Evans

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Our thoughts...

After reading Rachel’s Holiday a few years ago, I had high expectations for Marian’s newest novel, and I wasn’t disappointed. It’s touching, funny and charming – everything you’d want in a classic romantic comedy! Marian has a real knack for matching trauma with humour, so be prepared to laugh and cry in equal measures. - Olivia Matthews, Content Executive

WIN with Penguin Books!

Ready to kick back on a lounger and get lost in a good book like this?

As part of our amazing partnership with Penguin Books, we'll also be offering one lucky bookworm the chance to win a family Jet2holiday to a choice of six destinations, plus a Penguin Book bundle worth £200! So you could be jetting off to Crete, Spain, Turkey, Portugal, Fuerteventura or Malta, with all your new holiday reads in the bag too. Find out how to enter here.

Check out the free extract, then bag yourself a copy here!

Posted: 9th May 2024.

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