Book 837 Janice Galloway – The Trick is to Keep breathing


When I first read the blurb to this book I secretly thought ‘Oh No, not another female – manic-depressive novel. I don’t mind them but really it’s not my favourite type of novel as it usually falls into clichés.

Woman is alone due to a lover/ relative dying/leaving her.

Woman starts to see her life turn into rubble.

Woman speculates on her past life and focuses on the little details.

Insanity pursues.

I don’t want to sound like a sexist or insensitive but there is a sort of formula.

The Trick…. does follow this sort of plotline but, thankfully the approach is much different.

Joy Stone’s marriage has disintegrated, her lover has died in a swimming accident and she has an on/off relationship with on of her ex students. Naturally depression sinks in, drives Joy insane and results in a short spell in a mental institution.

Joy eventually gets better and realises that the trick to existing is to like the very basic things of life.

Same old , same old,  right ? Here Galloway documents this madness with short paragraphs , drawings and magazine articles. Also the chronology is all messed up so you have to piece everything together so when reading The Trick…  is akin to playing some intense detective game. It’s also naggingly addictive as I wanted to see how Joy will cope with her situation.

With this novel Galloway has shown that you can take an age-old premise and give it an exciting makeover, which leads to a satisfying read.