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The Best Things de Mel Giedroyc
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The Best Things (edició 2020)

de Mel Giedroyc (Autor)

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Membre:sandypescod
Títol:The Best Things
Autors:Mel Giedroyc (Autor)
Informació:Headline Review (2020), 320 pages
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The best things de Mel Giedroyc

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Es mostren totes 2
Thirty years ago Sally fell in love with Frank, a wide boy entrepreneur, now she is married to multimillionaire hedgefund head, on valium and feeling out of control with her life, her children, her friends and her staff in her Leatherhead McMansion. Then overnight everything falls apart and Sally realises that things will never be the same again.
Celebrity novels go one of two ways, either they are wonderful (eg. Graham Norton) or they are like this one. My expectations were high, Giedroyc is a funny woman and her non-fiction articles in magazines have been supremely entertaining, but this was such a disappointment, it felt like a story 'phoned in' using every cliche of the genre. There are a funny episodes but overall I couldn't wait to reach the (predictable) end. ( )
  pluckedhighbrow | Jun 1, 2021 |
“It's the story of a family who lose everything, only to find themselves, and each other, along the way.”

The book’s strap line provides the perfect summary of The Best Things, the entertaining debut adult novel from British comedian, actor, and presenter, Mel Giedroyc.

Living in a palatial home in Surrey’s most exclusive gated community, hedge fund CEO Frank Parker is proud that his financial success ensures his wife, Sally, and teenage children, Chloe, Stephen, Michaela (Mikey) and (niece) Emily, want for nothing. Sally is conscious of the privilege Frank’s wealth affords her, but with household tasks managed by a contemptuous, territorial housekeeper, her mothering outsourced to an insolent Australian nanny, and her workaholic husband often absent, she’s popping prescription pills to avoid facing the emptiness of her days.
When the financial market suddenly goes to hell, Frank has a nervous breakdown, and when Sally learns they are going to lose everything they have, she realises she has to regain control of her life before she loses her family too.

Giedroyc draws on the familiar cliche’s of ‘money can’t buy happiness’, and of course, ‘the best things in life are free’ in this ‘riches to rags’ story. The pace is a little slow to start as we are introduced to the Parker family, but begins to picks up as their life begins to fall apart. While I thought the plot was fairly predictable, they were some small surprises, some a little absurd, but there was not really much in the way of tension. There is however plenty of humour in The Best Things, as you’d expect from an author who made a living as a comedian, with some cracking quips and amusing banter.

Giedroyc leans quite heavily into the stereotypes of wealthy people, mocking their extravagant excesses, snobbery, and petty , and while I do think many of her characters tend to be quite shallowly drawn, there is some nuance to be found. Frank’s love for Sally, for example, is deep and genuine, even if the expression of his adoration, by removing any stress or challenge from her life, is wholly misguided. I wanted to like Sally more than I did though, I think Giedroyc took a little too long to have her shed her ennui and take some responsibility for her family and their situation. The children were a surprise though, they were probably the most genuine, and sympathetic, characters in the book.

I enjoyed The Best Things, it’s lively, funny and ultimately uplifting. ( )
  shelleyraec | Apr 1, 2021 |
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