Rachel's Holiday

by Marian Keyes | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 0140271791 Global Overview for this book
Registered by loopy1 of Herne Bay, Kent United Kingdom on 6/29/2003
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9 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by loopy1 from Herne Bay, Kent United Kingdom on Sunday, June 29, 2003
Of all the Marian Keyes books that I've read (and I've read most of them) this is my all-time favourite. The story is told so skilfully that we make the same journey that Rachel makes, and the same discoveries she makes.
Some books stick in your mind, explain things you didn't understand, and float back to the top of your mind from time to time. This is one of them.

Here's Rachel Walsh, 27, and the miserable owner of size 8 feet. She has regular congress with Luke Costello, a man who wears his leather trousers tight. And she's fond - some might say overfond - of recreational drugs.
Until everything goes pear-shaped and she finds herself being frog-marched to the Cloisters - Dublin's answer to the Betty Ford Clinic. She's outraged. Surely she's not thin enough to be an addict? But on the bright side, she's heard that rehab places are wall-to-wall jacuzzis, gymnasiums and rock stars going tepid turkey. Besides, it's about time she had a little holiday.

from back cover.

Journal Entry 2 by loopy1 from Herne Bay, Kent United Kingdom on Sunday, June 29, 2003
This one's heading out on a bookray.
This is mailing order:

talkland UK
Theresa-A UK
allbookedup Austria
fflloorr Portugal
mfa Portugal
xanapeq Portugal
blossomU Portugal
Pikapolonica Sweden
sweetiepeetie Texas, US
pchemphd Florida, US
katayoun Tehran, Iran
Jas330 Washington, US
raynebair Alabama, US
Hathyia Malaysia
Xana Portugal

You? PM if you wish to join. Be prepared to post anywhere :-)

Journal Entry 3 by talkland from Eastbourne, East Sussex United Kingdom on Thursday, July 03, 2003
The book arrived this morning, with my husband! He was coming home from work and met the postman at the door. He was looking his usual happy self and said, "I thought you said that you weren't ordering any more books".

"I didn't order it, it's a bookray", I said. I don't think he knows what that is exactly, but it satisfied him. Then as he was taking off his coat, I asked him how work went. He grunted, which I took to mean alright. Men at times express more in their grunts and groans than words sometimes, and they wonder why we have problems understanding them!

Journal Entry 4 by talkland from Eastbourne, East Sussex United Kingdom on Thursday, July 03, 2003
Thank you Loopy, this sure arrived fast! I only sign up to the bookray a couple of days ago. I not complaining though, and I am looking forward to curling up on the sofa this evening after darling hubby has pootled off to work. No interruptions and it will be lovely and quiet except for the seagulls who are driving me batty at the moment, which I am sure you understand living by the seaside like myself. I shall focus my energy on the book and the racket will cease to be heard. I have terrific powers of concentration when it comes to reading, as I get lost amongst the pages of another world.

Thank you Loopy, for the postcard inside the book. It is going up on the wall which at the moment is bare plasterboard. Maybe if I get enough postcards the wall will be covered, then we won't have to wallpaper!!! Every time we have started decorating that wall something has happen to prevent us from finishing. The wall must be jinxed!

Journal Entry 5 by talkland from Eastbourne, East Sussex United Kingdom on Tuesday, July 08, 2003
This was the first time that I have read anything by Marian Keyes. I was expecting a 'fluffy' read because I assumed that it was typical chick lit. How wrong I was!

This is the story of Rachel Walsh's growth from being a drugged-up loser into adulthood, and boy is it painful! In the beginning she is definitely not a pleasant person to be around and like all addicts lies, cheats and steals to get her own way. You do get glimpses of the lovely girl underneath all the insecurity and neuroses, and by the end she has matured in to a more rounded and nicer individual. It is not glamorise or a pretty journey from druggy hell to sanity. We feel Rachel's pain, hear Rachel's thoughts and understand Rachel's actions. A great story, never depressing but always real.

Journal Entry 6 by talkland at Postal Release in Lydd, Kent United Kingdom on Thursday, July 10, 2003
Released on Thursday, July 10, 2003 ~ Postal Release in Lydd, Kent, United Kingdom.

The book travelled about 45 miles to get posted! It is OK, I am not trying to post a book from every Post Office in a fifty mile radius of my home or anything daft like that. I went along the coast from Eastbourne to Lydd to see my parents and Jed (the delightful woofy cocker spaniel) on the bus as I don't drive. The bus leaves Eastbourne town centre at 7.40am and arrives in Lydd at 10.15am. To make it worth my while, I get the last bus from Lydd back to Eastbourne, that leaves at 5.07pm and arrives back in Eastbourne at 7.30pm. Now you may wonder why I am telling you all this, I wanted to post the book and as I could not do it in Eastbourne (because I wasn't there) I did it in Lydd instead. It is also very convenient as the Post Office is a few yards from the bus stop I get off at in Lydd, so I went straight in after getting off the bus.

While typing all this I had a thought! Why didn't I leave posting the book until tomorrow?

Journal Entry 7 by Theresa-A on Friday, July 11, 2003
Well, it appears that the book has survived it's excursion and journey here! Talkland - your journal entry has intrigued me, and now I'm wondering what the book has in store for me! I'll probably start this one next week.

Journal Entry 8 by Theresa-A on Monday, August 11, 2003
I finished this book on Saturday, and have to admit I enjoyed it. Like talkland, I was expecting more of a light ‘chick lit’ book, but was pleasantly surprised. I couldn’t really get into the book at first – it didn’t really grip me – but I soon got into it as I learnt more about Rachel and her situation. I would definitely recommend this book, and it will be on the way to the next reader soon.

Journal Entry 9 by Theresa-A on Monday, August 25, 2003
Sorry - forgot to journal when I posted the book!! 'Rachel's Holiday' is on the way to allbookedup. I think it should be with you sometime this week :-) Enjoy!!

Journal Entry 10 by allbookedup from Wien Bezirk 21 - Floridsdorf, Wien Austria on Monday, September 08, 2003
Finally arrived today, I was already a bit worried that it was lost in the mail... (sorry Theresa-A for all my worry-messages!!)
I am really looking forward to reading this book, but before I can start it I have to finish another bookring-book (Animal Husbandry).

Journal Entry 11 by allbookedup from Wien Bezirk 21 - Floridsdorf, Wien Austria on Tuesday, September 16, 2003
I finished the book within 4 days, it was hard to put down. Like I often say, I am a big Marian Keyes fan, this woman has a really good sense of humour and I just love her style. The description of Rachel being a drug addict and denying it and then slowly accepting it and becoming a more mature and nicer person was well done, I was drawn into the story quickly and wanted to know what happened next. I read somewhere that Marian Keyes herself is a recovered alcoholic, maybe that's why it all feels so real when you read it.
The book was sent off on Sept. 16th by surface mail to "fflloorr" in Portugal, hope you enjoy it too!

Journal Entry 12 by fflloorr from Lisboa - City, Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Tuesday, October 07, 2003
Got the book this week. Unfortunately, it will have to wait for a while since I have other rings to read.

Journal Entry 13 by fflloorr from Lisboa - City, Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Tuesday, October 21, 2003
What a great book this is.
I really enjoyed the description of the phases addicts go through until they are recovered.
This was the first book I've read written by Marian Keyes and I now have "Lucy Sullivan is getting married" waiting for me. Can't wait to start reading it. I just hope it's as good as this one.
Mfa is next on the list, I hope she'll enjoy the book as much as I did.

P.S. - What a man that Luke! ;-)

Journal Entry 14 by mfa from Lisboa - City, Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Thursday, November 13, 2003
got the book today from fflloorr. i never read anything by marian keyes, and i'm quite curious.

Journal Entry 15 by mfa from Lisboa - City, Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Friday, December 26, 2003
i must confess i find most of chick-lit all the same. it was keye's irishness that made me want to join this ring.
i started by finding its lack of asthetics annoying (i spent so much time thinking about what's the point of literature at all that i came to the conclusion it was to be to make us aware of the beauty that surrounds us), and rachel as shallow as it gets.
but towards the end i felt more attached to the story. in my opinion it remained shallow and quite moralistic (and therefore unnefective) for such as huge topic as drug abuse, but its simple and honest tone caught me.

Journal Entry 16 by BlossomU on Tuesday, December 30, 2003
Book has just arrived by hand, I will read it and send it to xanapeq!

Journal Entry 17 by BlossomU on Monday, January 05, 2004
Ok, I totally agree with Fflloorr about Luke, see? Fflloorr always complains I am mean to the books she really liked, so get ready dear, I am going to be mean again. Sort of. On one hand I think this was the best Marian Keyes I have read ( the two others were Lucy Sullivan and Saloon), but it being the third novel of hers I have read I got less patience for main characters which are so shallow and seem to change personalities whenever the author feels like it.

I also thought the theme pretty interesting, was very curious about how the whole treatment process would work out, but while being interested I kept thinking it a bit fake in parts, the way each inmate is made to be an example of some type of trauma which leads into abuse. And the ending was ridiculous, it was all about "tell, not show" about Rachel and Rachel finally growing up and since it was all "tell" I could not really buy it as credible.

So my feelings for this book are very mixed, I found it readable and the theme interesting and some great very funny scenes, but also a bit simplistic, very unsubtle and even manipulative in how it handled its theme. And a personal bias, I thought the main character shallow and passive and in all unlikeable - I could admire the book, even like it despite that, but I kept thinking that Keyes does not really shows her changing, she tells us about it instead.

Book will be sent to xanapeq tomorrow. And many thanks for starting the bookray, loopy1, despite my mixed feelings I did want to read it!

Journal Entry 18 by xanapeq from London, Greater London United Kingdom on Tuesday, January 13, 2004
Hi everyone, just to let you know I received this book last week from BlossomU. I will read it as soon as I finish The Life of Pi from another bookring. Bye for now!

Journal Entry 19 by xanapeq from London, Greater London United Kingdom on Wednesday, February 11, 2004
Hi, fellow bookcrossers! I'm about to make a confession: I couldn't go through with the book. If it had been my copy, I would have given up a long time ago, but since it was a BCbook I really wanted to read it... That's why it took me so long to pass it on.

So let me try and explain. I "met" Keyes in a compilation of Irish contemporary authors and her writing was fluid and entertaining. I enjoy these sorts of lighter literature (I use these word deliberately). But the theme of this book... Rachel is an unlikable character. But MKeyes is an engaging writer and I so I continued reading... Rachel has an addiction problem (painkillers, drugs, etc) and doesn't admit it, until she is sent to a clinic (where she hopes to meet celebrities...). The book's tone is light, so I believe we are experiencing the story from her point of view: ie, no problem whatsoever. Except she is an addict, and I really think these things are no to be taken lightly. I don't know what happens next and if she is "cured", but by now we should all realize that these things are not to be taken lightly, and that noone is really cured, and that it take a lot of strength to overcame drug-addiction, etc, ect.

So, with so many other stories on my shelves, I decided to go for another book, light or not, but at least one that does not handle such a serious problem this way.

I sent the book yesterday to pikapolonica in Sweden. And just to let you know, the book was a bit bulky (390 gr), which made the shipping a bit expensive for a paperback - you were right BlossomU.

One final not of Thanks to loopy1 for organizing this bookray.

Journal Entry 20 by wingAnonymousFinderwing on Thursday, July 21, 2005


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