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The Feng Shui Junkie

Brian Gallagher

Average Review Rating Average Rating 8/10 (1 Review)
Book Details

Publisher : Orion Books Ltd

Published : 2000

Copyright : Brian Gallagher 2000

ISBN-10 : HB 0-75282-550-X
ISBN-13 : HB 978-0-75282-550-2

Publisher's Write-Up

When Julie returns home unexpectedly early from a short holiday, only to find a strange lemon-yellow Wonderbra hanging on the inside doorknob of their Dublin flat, she is confronted by the inescapable fact that her husband Ronan is having an affair. But who with? And above all, why?

Julie resists the urge for an immediate and violent showdown and instead, fuelled by anger, despair and a plentiful supply of whiskey, embarks on a campaign of detection and revenge. Her motto: get mad, then get even, then throw the bastard out. Her mother, and her best friend Sylvana, neither of whom have much time for Ronan, are willing accomplices.

The first victim is Ronan's beloved Porsche. Then, after she has identified lovely blonde Nicole as his lover, a clandestine visit to her house provides Julie not only with useful information about the enemy, but also with ample opportunity to vent her wrath.

Not least on Nicole's aquarium.

But an unexpected turn of events throws Julie and Nicole together, though Nicole has no idea that her new friend is the wife about whom Ronan has been so scathing. And much to her surprise Julie finds that Nicole, despite her attachment to faddish absurdities like feng shui, is impossible to hate. Maybe, she begins to realise, Nicole is as much a victim of Ronan's manipulations as she is.

Written with irresistible energy and style, full of wonderfully drawn characters, bursting with savage wit, Brian Gallagher's first novel is a sensational debut.

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Reader Reviews

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Review by Chrissi (011102) Rating (8/10)

Review by Chrissi
Rating 8/10
This is a book that could have been written by Marion Keyes; set in Dublin we see Julie arrive home to her dentist husband and find a lemon-yellow Wonderbra on the doorknob. Julie is distraught, and upon finding a ladies attaché case, she goes through it, finding a name and address.
Julie has quite a few stiff drinks while thinking what to do about the situation in which she has found herself, takes the heavy cut glass decanter stopper out of the flat with her, to the car park where she sets about her husbands Porsche before going to the address in the case and trashing the place before passing out dead drunk.

And so she embarks on a campaign to keep her husband, and inadvertently becomes friendly with the other woman when she goes to confront her only to find her walking away from her home having just been beaten up by her live-in partner.

The campaign that Julie embarks upon is part punishment for her cheating husband and part a way to make herself feel better. She wants a baby and this has probably been the issue that has driven her and her husband apart. She feels that if she confronts him then he will feel that he has to leave, so although she is very angry with him, she does not want him to go away with his bit on the side. This would appear to be a sound plan until she finds that her adversary is an amateur artist and her pretentious art lover husband is planning to take her to Paris to try to sell her paintings.

The writing of this book is simply stunning, evoking the moment in As Good As It Gets, where Jack Nicholson is asked how come he writes the parts of women so well, and he replies something along the lines of thinking of a man and removing reason and accountability. Brian Gallagher has done a stirling job, Julie in turns makes you cringe, sympathise and laugh out loud, the plot takes turns that seem logical but quickly become absurd, and the revenge that Julie takes on the painting that the other woman is planning to take to Paris is absolutely brilliant.
Chrissi (1st November 2002)

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