Packing Up: Further Adventures of a Trailing Spouse

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This sequel compiles Keenan’s diary entries over the course of six years to record her life as an aging woman; as a fledgling grandmother; and as the wife of AW, an ambassador of the European commission who is on the verge of retirement. Her barefaced entries humorously examine her travels to eight countries. From misunderstandings with her Russian-speaking maid and cook to the embarrassing moment when she is mistaken for a seventeen year-old woman from behind, readers are sure to experience an empathetic laugh at her antics. But, Keenan’s lightheartedness does not prevent her from openly discussing the dark period in her life when she was diagnosed and treated for breast cancer.

Fans of Diplomatic Baggage will find a similar read in Packing Up, but may not enjoy some of her repeat references. Newcomers will be pleased to know that this book can be read on its own, but should be forewarned that at many moments this book lapses into disconnected, short streams of consciousness that lack direction. At times, there is also a frustrating lack of resolution, e.g. was Maisie’s troubling eye twitch diagnosed and cured? Keenan’s honesty and humor is to be admired, but the lack of narrative structure is disappointing.


Reviewed By:

Author Brigid Keenan
Star Count 3/5
Format Hard
Page Count 320 pages
Publisher Bloomsbury USA
Publish Date 2014-Sep-30
ISBN 9781408846902
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue November 2014
Category Popular Fiction
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