She keeps on doing it, the Irish masteress
of wit. Chick-lit some would say, and sure, Keyes's books are easy to read,
laugh at, cry at. Those kind of books that can at least assist in helping you
getting over a bad break-up, loss of job - a drug addiction even! From her
first books, Watermelon, and Rachel's holiday, to her latest, The Other side of
The story and Under the Duvet, Keyes are not shying away from the heavy
topics. So tough subjects, yet easy reading? Well, it doesn't hurt laughing at
the misery is clearly Keyes's motto...and so is that of her readers. Chick-lit or
not - these are books that have sold in millions. Keyes nails down the
postmodern, confused thirty-something to a tee and does it over and over
The Other Side of the Story tells the tale of Gemma, Lily and Jojo - the first
two of whom are friends turned enemies - and all over a man of course. Jojo
is the literary agent who first discover Lily's talents, then Gemma's, and, in so
doing, ends up brokering peace between the two. This is the story in a nut-
shell, but in Keyesian-style, the twists, turns and stomach-churning it takes
to get there are true to the author's usual core. With wit dripping off the page
and some love, work and ambition thrown in with it, Keyes has created a
story where women are trying to make sense of society's claims tothe
possibility of 'having it all' -the prince, the shoes, and the money to buy
them. But as always, there are morals and lessons to be learnt - when dealing
with tough subjects the solutions are seldom straight-forward or superficial.
In The Other Side of the Story, just as in her previous books - Rachel's
Holiday especially - the remedy contains facing facts and one-self.
Keyes never lets anyone escape that bit.