All The Books I Can Read

1 girl….2 many books!

Review: Girls Night In 10th Anniversary Collection – Jessica Adams

on December 10, 2014

Girls Night InGirls Night In the 10th Anniversary Collection
Jessica Adams
Penguin Books AUS
2014, eBook
Copy courtesy of the publisher via NetGalley

Description {from the Publisher}: This bumper Tenth Anniversary Edition of Girls’ Night In brings together much-loved stories from the previous four books by some of the biggest names in women’s fiction – Marian Keyes, Candace Bushnell, Cathy Kelly and Maggie Alderson, to name a few.

Have fun and do good at the same time – by buying this book you’ll be helping kids caught up in the turmoil of war, with all royalties going to War Child, a charity that funds projects for children in areas of conflict.

So grab a cup of tea and reserve a place on the couch to enjoy all the comedy, romance, adventure and drama of some of the best short fiction on offer.

I can remember reading the first first Girls Night In release when I was at university and living on 2 minute noodles and peanut butter on toast. My nan had bought it and then decided it wasn’t really for her (she’s not keen on short stories, I think she was swayed by the wonderful line up of names). She passed it on to me and my house mate Claire and I ended up both reading it. She was a reader too, one of my few reading friends and during the time we lived together (almost 3 years, 2 years in a dorm on campus and then 1 year in our own place) we spent countless hours discussing books we’d read, books we loved, books we were recommending to each other and books we’d heard about. It’s probably what cemented our friendship as we had little else, if anything, in common.

Since then there’s been several other releases, some featuring male authors by invitation. This is a ‘best of’ collection, a coming together of stories from the previous volumes. I’m not sure what happened to my copy of the original – I suspect Claire may have ended up with it when we divided up our belongings! However I was pretty sure it wouldn’t matter that I’d probably read some of these before – after all that’s a decade and many, many hundreds of books ago. Turns out I was right. There’s very little in here that I remember, other than the story by Nick(ola) Earls. There are plenty of some old favourite authors: Marian Keyes, Fiona Walker, Cathy Kelly, Liane Moriarty, Monica McInerney and Sophie Kinsella, to name just a few. Names that have adorned my bookshelves for almost two decades in some cases. Names that are still autobuys.

I have to admit that like my nan, I’m not really a short story person. I like to sink into a novel, to get involved and the often cryptic endings of short stories can leave me confused and unsatisfied. However there were some really brilliant ones in here – Cecilia Ahearn’s The End which is a story told backwards about a break-up, Isla Dewar’s The Alma Club about a group of successful women and the hairdresser that changed and shaped them, Wishing Carefully by Marian Keyes and Mothers’ Group by Liane Moriarty.

Despite the size of this collection, it was a very quick read, each story flying along because they’re only a few pages. I read it in two sittings but it would be very easy to snatch a story here and there – would make a great book for public transport or perhaps for bed time. It also supports a worthy cause, with all the proceeds going to War Child.

8/10

Book #253 of 2014

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