Sushi for Beginners: A Novel

Sushi for Beginners: A Novel

by Marian Keyes


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Sushi for Beginners: A Novel by Marian Keyes

Lisa Edwards

This Prada-wearing magazine editor thinks her life is over when her "fabulous" new job turns out to be a deportation to Dublin to launch Colleen magazine. The only saving grace is that her friends aren't there to witness her downward spiral. Might her new boss, the disheveled and moody Jack Devine, save her from a fate worse than hell?

Ashling Kennedy

Ashling, Colleen's assistant editor, is an award-winning worrier, increasinglyaware that something fundamental is missing from her life -- apart from a boyfriendand a waistline.

Clodagh "Princess" Kelly

Ashling's best friend, Clodagh, lives the domestic dream in a suburban castle.So why, lately, has she had the recurring urge to kiss a frog -- or sleep with afrog, if truth be told?As these three women search for love, success, and happiness, they willdiscover that if you let things simmer under the surface for too long, sooneror later they'll boil over.

Discover the Keyes to a Great Read!

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780060555955
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 02/05/2008
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 448
Sales rank: 555,830
Product dimensions: 5.31(w) x 8.00(h) x 1.01(d)

About the Author

Marian Keyes is the author of ten bestselling novels and two essay collections. She lives in Ireland with her husband and their two imaginary dogs.

Read an Excerpt

Sushi for Beginners

Chapter One

At Femme magazine, something had been in the air for weeks, a feeling that they were living on a fault line. Speculation finally burst into flames when it was confirmed that Calvin Carter, the U.S. managing director, had been sighted roaming around the top floor, looking for the gents'. Apparently he'd just arrived in London from the head office in New York.

It's happening. Lisa clenched her fists in excitement. It's actually finally, bloody happening.

Later that day the phone call came. Would Lisa pop upstairs to see Calvin Carter and British managing director Barry Hollingsworth?

Lisa slammed down the phone. "Too right I would," she shouted at it.

Her colleagues barely looked up. People slamming phones down then shouting were ten a penny in the magazine game. Besides, they were trapped in Deadline Hell -- if they didn't get this month's issue put to bed by nightfall, they'd miss their slot with the printers and would be scooped once again by archrivals Marie Claire. But what did she care, Lisa thought, hobbling to the lift, she wouldn't have a job here after today. She'd have a much better one somewhere else.

Lisa was kept waiting outside the boardroom for twenty-five minutes. After all, Barry and Calvin were very important men.

"Should we let her in yet?" Barry asked Calvin, when he felt they'd killed enough time.

"It's only twenty minutes since we called her," Calvin pointed out, huffily. Obviously Barry Hollingsworth didn't realize just how important he, Calvin Carter, was.

"Sorry, I thought it was later. Perhaps you'd show me again how to improve my swing."

"Sure. Now, head down and hold still. Hold still! Feet steady, left arm straight, and swing!"

When Lisa was finally granted admission, Barry and Calvin were seated behind a walnut table approximately a kilometer long. They looked frowningly powerful.

"Sit down, Lisa." Calvin Carter inclined his silver bullet head graciously.

Lisa sat. She smoothed back her caramel-colored hair, showing her free honey-colored highlights to their best advantage. Free because she kept plugging the salon in the "Ones to Watch" section of the magazine.

Settling herself in the chair, she tucked her Patrick Cox-shod feet neatly around each other.

The shoes were a size too small -- no matter how many times she asked the Patrick Cox press office to send a size six, they always sent a five. But free Patrick Cox shoes were free Patrick Cox shoes. What did an unimportant detail like excruciating agony matter?

"Thank you for coming up.' Calvin smiled. Lisa decided she'd better smile back. Smiles were a commodity like everything else, only given in exchange for something useful, but she reckoned in this case it was worth her while. After all, it wasn't every day that a girl was seconded to New York and made deputy editor of Manhattan magazine. So she curled her mouth and bared her pearly-white teeth. (Kept that way from the year's supply of Rembrandt toothpaste that had been donated for a reader competition, but which Lisa had thought would be more appreciated in her own bathroom.)

"You've been at Femme for" -- Calvin looked at the stapled pages in front of him -- "four years?"

"Four years next month," Lisa murmured, with an expertly judged mix of deference and confidence.

"And you've been editor for nearly two years?"

"Two wonderful years," Lisa confirmed, fighting back the urge to stick her fingers down her throat and gag.

"And youre only twenty-nine," Calvin marveled. "Well, as you know, here at Randolph Media we reward hard work.'

Lisa twinkled prettily at this patent lie. Like many companies in the Western world, Randolph Media rewarded hard work with poor pay, increasing workloads, demotions, and on-a-second's-notice redundancies.

But Lisa was different. She'd paid her dues at Femme, and made sacrifices that even she'd never intended to make: starting at seven-thirty most mornings, doing twelve-, thirteen-, fourteen-hour days, then going to evening press do's when she finally switched off her computer. Often she came to work on Saturdays, Sundays, even bank-holiday Mondays. The porters loathed her because it meant that whenever she wanted to come to the office one of them had to come in and open up and thereby forgo their Saturday football or their bank-holiday family outing to Brent Cross.

"We have a vacancy at Randolph Media, " Calvin said importantly. "it would be a wonderful challenge, Lisa."

I know, she thought irritably. Just cut to the chase.

"It will involve moving overseas, which can sometimes be a problem for one's partner."

"I'm single." Lisa was brusque.

Barry wrinkled his forehead in surprise and thought of the termer he'd had to hand over for someone's wedding present a few years before. He could have sworn it was for Lisa here, but maybe not, perhaps he wasn't as on the ball as he once used to be ...

"We're looking for an editor for a new magazine," Calvin went on.

A new magazine? Lisa was jotted off course. But Manhattan has been published for seventy years.

While she was still grappling with the implications of that, Calvin delivered the whammy. "It would involve your relocating to Dublin."

The shock set up a smothered buzzing in her head, as if her ears needed to pop. A numb, fuzzy sensation of alienation. The only reality was the sudden agony of her crumpled toes.

"Dublin?" She heard her muffled voice ask. Perhaps ... perhaps ... perhaps they meant Dublin, New York.

"Dublin, Ireland," Calvin Carter said, down a long, echoey tunnel, destroying the last of her hope.

I can't believe this is happening to me.


"Small wet place across the Irish Sea," Barry offered kindly.

"Where they drink a lot?" Lisa said faintly.

"And they never stop talking. That's the place. Booming economy, huge population of young folk. Market research indicates the place is ripe for a new feisty women's magazine. And we want you to set it up for us, Lisa."

Sushi for Beginners. Copyright © by Marian Keyes. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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Sushi for Beginners 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 62 reviews.
scovel More than 1 year ago
This was a very very hard book to get into. It took me until I was ¾ of the way through before I actually wanted to read it. I can imagine that someone with less patience than I would have a hard time! This is a funny story of a workaholic British woman who moves to Ireland to start up a new glossy magazine. Her marriage has fallen on its face and she is working to get on top of the publishing world. Meanwhile you meet two other women with men issues and career problems. Ashling, one of the other main characters, is known as miss-fix-it. She has spent a lifetime trying to deal with her mother's depression and lack of parenting. The last 40 pages of this book make the whole thing worth reading. It is a fun summer read that will keep you just entertained enough to finish (if you can get into it in the first place).
lalala413 More than 1 year ago
The book was entertaining and hilarious. I liked how the author incorporated the lives of different characters and it all flowed nicely with the plot. It's a nice book to read for any occasion, whether it's to escape boredom, on a rainy day, summer read, doesn't matter because the book is the epitome of a perfect book
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a good book, and you often find yourself relating to the main character's dilemmas. I would recommend this book to keep one company if you're feeling depressed or lonely. It's also very humorous..
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just finished this book and I loved it!!! I loved the characters and the story line. One was married with children the other single and working for a fashion magazine. Each of them secretly evy the others life. One of them looses it all and the other gets everything she ever wanted. Many other great characters. They intermingle in eachothers lives wonderfully.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The is my first Marian Keyes novel, and I have to say it's so good I have purchased 3 more of her books already. This author is great at character development, and this story ties together the three very different lives of three women, all of who have connections to each other.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the first time I've read anything by Marian Keyes. This novel was good and I kept me going as in turning page after page. International authors are very different from American authors (my opinion) and Mrs. Keyes writes execeptionally well. I would recommend this book to others as well as reading some of her other works.
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