Review: Stick or Twist by Eleanor Moran

Stick or Twist At first glance Anna Christie seems to have everything: a loving boyfriend and glamorous job on a women’s magazine. However, all is not as it seems. Her career seems to have taken a wrong turn. Rather than becoming the foreign correspondent she always dreamed of being she has somehow ended up at Casual Chic, spending her days writing articles like ‘Fifty ways with a cherry tomato’ and ‘Impotence: why no marriage is safe’. The spark seems to have gone out of her personal life too.

While she knows a lot of women would kill to have the comfy, undemanding relationship she has with Adam, her boyfriend of ten years, she can’t help but feel that the trouble with comfy is that it is a bit dull, a bit routine and lacking anything that comes close to being called excitement. Just as Anna is starting to question if this is really what she wants from a relationship Adam gets down on one knee and pops the question she suddenly realises she has been dreading.

What should she do? Say yes, accept that things will never be exciting again? Settle down to a life of routine, unflattering nightwear, mechanical sex, babies, quilted loo roll and always wonder what might have been if she had been a little braver and made the break when she had the chance? Or walk away from the easy, familiar relationship she has and face the horrors of a newly single life camping out on a friend’s sofa and waiting to see who else is out there to spice up her life?

While she struggles with the implications of her decision she is given a make or break chance at work. She has the task of producing ‘a bridal show for funky young brides who thought they were too cool for convention but too in love to resist’. But can she pull it off when others in the office think that prawn vol au vents and jazz bands are the epitome of what is cool.

The book follows Anna’s ups and downs as she tries to make sense of her personal and professional situations and decide what she really does want out of her life. Stick or Twist is well written, easy to read and funny in places. There are enough twists and turns to keep you interested and keep you turning the pages to find out what happens to Anna in the end.

The only problem I had with the book was that I didn’t really like Anna as a character. She is a little shallow and didn’t find the mix of all the different aspects of her character wholly convincing. Her transformation by the end of the book seems a bit to convenient and the ending is perhaps a little too contrived. That said, I didn’t dislike her enough to put the book down. I did want to keep on reading to find out if it all works out for her – I just didn’t find myself rooting for her as I might have done if I have liked her a bit more or found her a bit more realistic.

On the whole this is a light hearted, fun read. Great for a holiday read – but be warned don’t even think about packing it if you are not sure the person you are going away with is the one for you.  

By Wendy Knowles

Rating 4 out of 5

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