Plot: Welcome to 66 Star Street . . . In the top-floor flat lives music exec Katie. She spends her days fighting off has-been rock stars and wondering how much cheesecake you’d need to eat yourself to death. Below her, a pair of muscular Poles share with a streetwise cabbie named Lydia, who has a sharp tongue, an even sharper brain but some unexpected soft spots. On the first floor is Fionn – a gardener who prefers the company of parsnips to people. But he looks like a fairy-tale prince and when he’s offered his own television show, he’s suddenly thrust into the limelight. And at the bottom of the house live Matt and Maeve, who are Very Much In Love and who stave off despair by doing random acts of kindness. But a mysterious visitor has just landed at 66 Star Street, bringing love, friendship and heartbreak, and a new-found optimism. Old secrets are working their way to the surface and all their lives are about to change in the most unexpected of ways . . . (via Goodreads)
There is something about Marian Keyes’ writing style that I find so reassuring. She writes like a madman and no story she produces is the same. When I picture her writing it feels like she’s similar to one of the writers who are tormented by the story until it’s been told.
The Brightest Star in the Sky is a mammoth undertaking and clocks in at about 600 pages. It took me a while to read, because hey, I can finish a 200 page book in a night but 600 is a whole other level. It is also not the easiest book to read. The paragraphs are short and quick to follow but the jumping between the comings and goings of all the residents in 66 Start Street can be overwhelming at times.
Classifying Marian Keyes as an author of chicklit is uninformed and silly. I am sure her audience is largely female but her topics are heavy and there is very little froth in her books. She taps into a range of emotions: Fear, angst, hilarity, sadness, power, it is all there in her books. Keyes deals with a variety of topics in this book (once again) and though I won’t mention it here because it is a spoiler, I was seriously angry at life in general at the end for some characters, and story is unfortunately the truth in modern society.
I found the narrator so strange. I couldn’t place what it is exactly and even by the wildest theories did I get near to the truth. The eventual identity of the narrator is slightly preposterous and quite silly.
The Brightest Star in the Sky was a good enough book to read, but the strength of the story is not equal to the size of the book and could be conceived as drawn out. I am glad I read it though; I really enjoy the author’s work and think she is amazingly talented. Not my favorite of her, but a fine book all the same.