Again, Rachel by Marian Keyes is a title sent to me by the wonderful people over at Penguin Random House.
I’ve been a fan of Marian Keyes’ writing almost from the start. Sushi For Beginners was my first encounter, and to date, Last Chance Saloon is probably my favourite. I skipped Grown Ups, despite having it in my Audible library. And for some reason, I felt very reluctant to jump into this book.
Well, it is quite an intimidating doorstopper of a book. But I finally took the plunge last week, and I’m so glad I did.
Remember Rachel Walsh?
To be fair, I only vaguely remembered Rachel’s Holiday, when the heroine was disappointed by the Cloisters – Dublin’s answer to the Betty Ford Clinic. No jacuzzi, no gym, no pseudo-celebrities. However, Again, Rachel capably stands on its own, so don’t fret if you haven’t read the first instalment. As different as they are, the Walsh sisters are all relatable thanks to their flaws. Some key events in this book revolve around mothers and motherhood.
Marian Keyes is one of the few writers I know who can masterfully knit several storylines into a wonderfully cohesive narrative, as she once again demonstrates in Again, Rachel. Rachel is now a counsellor at Cloisters, and the readers meet several of her clients, experience their journeys, and again, find someone to relate to and even care for between the covers.
One of the best parts of the book, for me, was when the title revealed itself in a crucial moment. I always love hunting for the reason behind the title, and there are several instances that could be “it”, you will know the right one when you get there. Because there’s really only one.
Marian said she never really thought she’d do a sequel, although she did give it a try for a Watermelon follow-up, it didn’t quite work out. But with Again, Rachel, it worked out perfectly. I was happy to give this four stars and might tackle Grown Ups soon.