book blog · Book Review

Book Review | Grown Ups by Marian Keyes

May 18th, 2022

Hi Readers!

This was my first Marian Keyes and I thought it would be a good place to start as it’s the one I’ve seen the most people read. But unfortunately it’s left me doubting whether I’ll ever pick anything of hers up again.

| Published: February 2020, Michael Joseph |
| Genre: Contemporary |
| Themes: Eating Disorder, Family Saga, |
| Length: 560 Pages |
| Age: Adult |
| My Rating: ⭐ ⭐ |

They’re a glamorous family, the Caseys. Johnny Casey, his two brothers Ed and Liam, their beautiful, talented wives and all their kids spend a lot of time together–birthday parties, anniversary celebrations, weekends away. And they’re a happy family. Johnny’s wife, Jessie–who has the most money–insists on it. Under the surface, though, conditions are murkier.

While some people clash, other people like each other far too much . . . Still, everything manages to stay under control–that is, until Ed’s wife, Cara, gets a concussion and can’t keep her thoughts or opinions to herself. One careless remark at Johnny’s birthday party, with the entire family present, and Cara starts spilling all their secrets.

As everything unravels, each of the adults finds themselves wondering if it’s–finally–the time to grow up.

But I really wasn’t expecting this to end up as a two star read after the first chapter, where we’re introduced to the stars of this family saga at a dinner party, and get a glimpse of everyones personalities, relationships and possible tensions. It started so strong, but I couldn’t bring myself to care for any of the characters, and it became a struggle to complete.

I just found this quite boring. It dragged, I wasn’t fully engaged, and I know it’s a long book but it felt long. It was a task to finish and I was quite glad when it was over.

You know how you read a fantasy book and can sometimes criticise it for too much world building. This book had the contemporary equivilant to too much world building. But I suppose I would call it character building. I love feeling like I know my characters but Keyes wanted to show us every meeting of every couple, there’s quite a few of them and it was a bit much.

Even with their flaws, none felt whole or real because there was just too much of it. And maybe that was my problem. There’s too much. Too many characters, plots, side plots, tensions, issues, secrets. Honestly it was hard to keep up with the characters and all that was going on with them, and was so confusing as moments.

A bit of a disappointing read because I know so many love Marian Keyes. I’m not opposed to reading her again though because I want to feel the love too.

Thanks For Reading,
Jess X

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