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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Suprised.
I do like Marian Keyes books and tend to slip them in between more heavy going reads as they are quick, light hearted, fun and always leave you smiling.

This book was quite a surprise with it dark subjects and the little snippets between chapters were surprisingly menacing. I enjoyed it throughly and loved that there were twists and surprises in the plot as a...
Published on 22 Jun 2009 by Miss Jelly

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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hard work, but gets there in the end
I have read all of Marian Keyes books and loved them, but i was completely drained by the time i finished this one. The themes of addiction and domestic violence are dealt with very well and depict the horrific consequences of both. The story is told by four women who are all connected in some way to a politician the 'Charming Man. The four women's stories are interwoven...
Published on 28 July 2008 by Louread


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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Suprised., 22 Jun 2009
This review is from: This Charming Man (Paperback)
I do like Marian Keyes books and tend to slip them in between more heavy going reads as they are quick, light hearted, fun and always leave you smiling.

This book was quite a surprise with it dark subjects and the little snippets between chapters were surprisingly menacing. I enjoyed it throughly and loved that there were twists and surprises in the plot as a lot of 'chick-lit' has become very formulaic and predictable these days.

A difficult subject well handled and well written. A very good read.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hard work, but gets there in the end, 28 July 2008
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This review is from: This Charming Man (Hardcover)
I have read all of Marian Keyes books and loved them, but i was completely drained by the time i finished this one. The themes of addiction and domestic violence are dealt with very well and depict the horrific consequences of both. The story is told by four women who are all connected in some way to a politician the 'Charming Man. The four women's stories are interwoven to some extent and each relate their 'story' in their own way. I found the way the book was written(through the different characters and different writing styles) quite demanding, although interesting and clever it is not a relaxing book to read and not one to read if you want cheering up. There is some light heartedness which is told through Lola's unusual diary entries and i won't spoil it but i did laugh out loud at some of the images the words created. It is a bit of a departure from the 'normal' Marian Keyes but brave of her to try something a little different.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This Charming Novel, 4 Aug 2009
By 
Emma Wright (Scotland, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: This Charming Man (Paperback)
Wow. I read this book having never delved into a Marian Keyes before. I'm very glad I tried it.
This book covered so many important issues from every day life, including domestic violence and alcoholism, but without becoming too depressing. There were so many injections of humour to the story that it was impossible for it to get too dark. The balance of seriousness and realistic humour was absolutely perfect.
Using four different points of view, Keyes manages to tell a very rounded story, with insight into what a lot of characters are thinking. Though at first the switching between characters can be slightly confusing, it's easy to get used to, and after a while you become thankful for the change of scene.
Look out for Lola's entries, I found them both the most interesting and the most funny. There were so many things that she said that had me laughing out loud, yet she was still vulnerable and showed how much she had been hurt.
Overall this book gets a 10/10 from me for being completely entertaining and not once giving me reason to stop reading. It had me hooked from the very first page and I found it very difficult to stop reading and either get up off the couch and go to work or, at night, switch off the light and go to sleep. If you like staying up till all hours lost in fiction, I highly recommend This Charming Man. You haven't truly enjoyed a book until you've read it.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent novel, 3 Feb 2009
By 
This review is from: This Charming Man (Audio CD)
Synopsis:

Lola Daly has just found out that her boyfriend - gorgeous, charming and powerful politician Paddy de Courcy - is getting married. To someone else. Heartbroken, Lola flees Dublin to a cottage in the countryside. Can a new set of friends help her to get over him? Journalist Grace Gildee wants the inside story on Paddy de Courcy's engagement. Lola refuses to talk the press but Grace won't give up. She knew Paddy a long time ago and hasn't forgotten him ...Marnie Hunter is Grace's twin sister. With a loving husband and two gorgeous daughters, Marnie seems to have it all. But she's haunted by memories. Memories that began with her first love - Paddy de Courcy. Can Marnie leave the past behind once and for all and move on with her life? Alicia Thornton is Paddy's wife-to-be. Determined to be the perfect wife, Alicia would do anything for her fiance. But does she know the real Paddy? Four women. One man. And a secret that binds them all.

I didn't know what to expect from this book, however, I really enjoyed it. The novel follows four ladies as they struggle through life facing hardships such as break-ups, depression, alcoholism and domestic abuse. All linked to Paddy de Courcy, we see how he has effected their lives - and how they deal with that. I'll start this review with my criticism:

- I found Marnie's character tough to bear. A depressive alcoholic - yet I found her whinging too much - although, that is probably a sign that her character was written accurately

- There were many issues mentioned in the book, which meant not all of them were dealt with in a satisfying way, such as cancer, smoking and death.

They are my only complaints. The rest of the book I adored. I liked how different characters had different ways of telling the story, such as Lola using diary form. The issues Keyes did tackle in depth were done expertly. I felt the issues of domestic abuse, alcoholism and identity were brave topics to write about, and all were explored and resolved satisfactorily. I enjoyed how the story unfolded - with the flashes back and the odd memory to make you wonder where the narrative was going. There were twists and turns, and the way Keyes wrote made me guess and assume wrongly, create false ideas about characters and generally be surprised at the revelation! I found myself getting emotionally involved and willing the best outcome.

There were a lot of characters in the book, however I felt I had a grasp on all of them. I loved Bid best. A lot of her lines had me laughing out loud.

I only had a couple of problems with this book and none were drastic enough to ruin the book for me.

9/10
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Book about Real People, 7 Feb 2009
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This review is from: This Charming Man (Paperback)
I, like many others, have enjoyed Marian Keys from her Watermelon, Rachel's Holiday etc days. There WERE things about this book which I found difficult - Lola's style of writing took some getting used to, but this was a book about REAL women who are disempowered by an attractive but controlling man. Unlike other readers I wasn't looking for the formulaic - woman has bad time with bad man and then good man rescues her novel, I was wanting to read an author who CLEARLY understands real life - in Marian's case, if I'm not mistaken, the life of an alcoholic (which was portrayed in all it's frustrating realism), but also the process of recovery which was shown in a sometimes funny sometimes painful way. I am really looking forward to my second read of this book (in probably a year's time - I read all my books a number of times) when I will be able to enjoy this book from another angle, and relax into knowing the characters more. Marian please - if you read this please keep moving forward and don't be tempted by those who have said they were disappointed to move back to the formulaic style which often characterises first novels. You have a real talent and I look forward to whatever you bring us next.

Emma S-K
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not at all Charming..........., 20 Jan 2009
This review is from: This Charming Man (Paperback)
What I love about Marian Keyes' books are the fast pace. This one didn't disappoint although to read some of the other reviews quite a lot of people don't agree with me. I have to say the book has a dark quality, but, contrary to other comments, I did have laugh out loud moments, especially when Lola visits Knockavoy (via the famed Kildare By-pass of course). I liked the way she differentiates between the four women's stories by changing each chapter to suit. As the story unfolds, the total horror of the women's situations becomes apparent, all at the hands of Paddy de Courcy, the common denominator in all their stories. Everyone one of them has some dark secret past with This Charming Man, and when the end comes for him, you can't help but laugh at his bewilderment.
Keyes always keeps you hooked until the end, and this book is no exception. Very satisfying.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not everyone is as Charming as they seem, 3 Jan 2009
By 
Jo D'Arcy (Portsmouth, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: This Charming Man (Paperback)
This is the first Marian Keyes I have read. I am sure it will not be the last; but I know what I am getting if I do pick one up.

This has had mixed reviews and I can understand why, however I am prepared to look more openly at this book as I have not read previous ones to compare to.

'This Charming Man' is Paddy de Courcy who has had an effect on four different women Lola, Grace, Marnie and Alicia. He is the common denominator between them all but they also have something else in common and as the book progresses it all unravels for them.

Keyes cleverly distinguishes between each of the female characters by using different type font and even pace of writing. We meet all those people important to them in each individual story. Paddy de Courcy does have some space of his own in the book, but it is rather squashed together and short - no doubt intentional.

Lola is written and appears to Bridget Jonesesque, dated entries with the short, sharp and fast pace writing. Lola is devasted that Paddy is getting married and not to her and we see as Lola hits rock bottom both professionally and personally. She heads down the infamous Kildare By-pass (a topic of interest for many) to Knockavoy. There Lola spends her time recovering, remembering and recuperating and involving herself in many aspects of community life.

Grace is a journalist who at first appears her only connection and interest in Paddy is trying to interview anyone that knows him. However it becomes apparent that Grace has many connections to Paddy, through her twin sister Marnie (the third main character) and also as she is chosen by Paddy to ghost-write his autobiography. The sexual tension is prevalent between them and as you read on, you discover how far it goes.

Marnie represents someone who had everything, lovely husband, two children and a lovely home but loses it all with an obsession and addiction. An obsession that she does not fit right in the world and the only way she can cope is to use her addiction, alcohol. Keyes treats this addiction with care and I found myself wincing as you see someone who has hit the self destruct button fall apart in front of your eyes. Will Marnie ever repair her life?

Alicia (Leechy to her friends) is the fourth character who does not get as much space individually in the novel as others. She has admired Paddy from afar and ensnares him rather secretly in her youth and is seen as the right face (despite its horsey overtones) to accompany an up and coming politician. But does she choose not to accept the real truth about her husband?

All these characters come together in the end and the result is not as you first expect. I have been mindful of giving too much away in this review, as it would be so easy to do when trying to get the gist of the story.

Keyes has crafted a book which deals with some issues that very rarely get much space nationally and are kept between a close few circles. There is warmth, humour and depth within the book and I turned the page expectantly every time.

To take anything from this book is Lola, the character which stays in my mind the most. Her story could be developed into a book of its own. I would love to more informed about Knockavoy, Chloe and Considine as well as her eclectic mix of friends and their husbands.

That said it is always a sign of a good book if you take away something from it you wish to know more about. A shame that none of the characters stood out as much for me.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy reading - but with a sharp, unexpected bite, 11 Jun 2009
By 
Four Violets (Hertford UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: This Charming Man (Paperback)
This has everything you could ask of a book - it's engrossing, very funny, and has an unexpected, sharp bite to it.

As they say, "don't judge a book by its cover." I will definitely be looking out for more by Marian Keyes.

Set in modern day Ireland and England, in the equally tricksy worlds of politics, the media and fashion, it shows how even women who consider themselves strong and independent can lose control of their lives.

The characters are sympathetic and likeable, and so what if some of the "baddies" and "oddities" are caricatures - no one ever held that against Dickens.

It's easy reading - and that's a compliment.
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71 of 82 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A charming book, 2 May 2008
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This review is from: This Charming Man (Hardcover)
As the synopsis says: "Four very different women. One awfully charming man. And the dark secret that binds them all . . " That pretty much sums up this page-turner by Marian Keyes, author of WATERMELON and SUSHI FOR BEGINNERS. Her latest novel is just as good--if not even better--than these previous efforts.

True, this novel has a gritter side and is more disturbing and deals with more "real life" issues than WATERMELON or some of her other efforts, but it's still packed with fun and frolic. There are moments that are hilarious paired with moments that will take your breath away. Such is as it should be with any good novel.

It would be virtually impossible to tell the story here without ruining it, but suffice it to say that Keyes is one of those writers (much like Kinsella) who knows how to craft a novel from start to finish. Unlike a lot of books that fall apart at the end, THIS CHARMING MAN goes straight for the finish line and then some.

My only complaint: I couldn't put it down and it TOTALLY disrupted my life. Would also recommmend the Kinsella novel REMEMBER ME? and the novel of great fun BARRING SOME UNFORESEEN ACCIDENT. Both are great, but THIS CHARMING MAN takes the cake.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book, 27 April 2009
By 
This review is from: This Charming Man (Paperback)
I've just finished reading this book and have to say I thought it was really good. When I go to buy 'Chick lit' books I sort of always go for the 'no-brainer' kind of books that you don't have to put much thought into. I have some of her books but to be honest had actually forgotton how good they were - I think it must be 4/5 years from I last picked one up.
If you enjoy womens fiction and want to read something that will make you laugh on one page while the next gives some serious subject matter to look at then this is for you.
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This Charming Man
This Charming Man by Marian Keyes (Paperback - 1 May 2008)
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