Thursday 26 April 2018

Comedy of errors with Brady's bunch - a breezy beach read

Fiction: The Cinderella Reflex, Joan Brady, Poolbeg, €16.99

Joan Brady's The Cinderella Reflex.
Joan Brady's The Cinderella Reflex.

Margaret Carragher

The premise of Joan Brady's debut novel - that when the going gets tough, women need a Prince Charming to rescue them - might well have feministas up in arms; but only if they had no sense of humour and were spoiling for a fight. Because far from an anti-feminist rant, The Cinderella Reflex is in fact a comedy of errors with players straight out of central casting.

Set in a local radio station in Dublin's commuter belt, the action kicks off in the premises of Atlantic1FM, where producer Tess Morgan is struggling to keep flagship presenter Ollie Andrews , who routinely loses the run of himself on air or flies into one of his thunderous rages - in check.

Matters aren't helped by the constant bitching and nit-picking of the station's executive editor Helene Harper. But Helene has her own problems. With listenership, advertising revenue and staff morale plummeting, the future of Atlantic1FM - and Helene's job - is under threat. Worse, her 40th birthday is looming, her biological clock is ticking, and there's still no sign of Richard, the station's owner and her secret, long-term lover, leaving his wife and kids and sweeping her off into the sunset.

Enter Jack McCabe - tall, dark and handsome but also masterful, dynamic and looking to invest his squillions in an ailing radio station. But first he must run it past the local fortune teller. And so to Grandma Rosa, psychic extraordinaire whose clientele includes the beleaguered Tess who just happens to be there looking suitably sweet and gorgeous when Jack rolls up.

Time then for a bit of dramatic tension when Chris Conroy, Tess's ex-boyfriend suddenly reappears. For all his apparent plausibility the guy is slippery and one to watch.

Meanwhile Helene's situation is going from bad to worse. Having assumed that the sale of Atlantic1FM would mean a quickie divorce for Richard and happy ever after for the pair of them, Helene is dismayed by her once ardent lover's change of heart. And then she discovers that she's pregnant. Funny, fast-paced and light as a breeze, this is an ideal beach read.

Sunday Indo Living

Entertainment Newsletter

Going out? Staying in? From great gigs to film reviews and listings, entertainment has you covered.

Editors Choice

Also in Entertainment