Rachel’s Holiday – my new favorite book that tackles addiction and recovery

Rachel's Holiday Pinterest Graphic

Rachel’s Holiday is my favorite new book that addresses addiction and recovery

Rachel’s Holiday is the first book I’ve read by Marian Keyes – but I’m already planning on reading more of her work

I love it when I read a book that I don’t want to end. And when I start getting excited about reading a book again before I’ve even finished it a first time? That’s when I know it’s a great read!a book quote regarding addiction and recovery

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What makes Rachel’s Holiday a great book?

“No one can make us feel anything,” interrupted clarence. “our feelings are our own responsibility.”

The characters are lovable but flawed 

I cannot relate to perfect people. And Rachel is definitely not perfect – and neither is her family. The way her different family members interact with Rachel can border on thoughtless and mean. But they are also loving and ultimately supportive. Rachel is in denial about her addiction and ultimate stay in a treatment center, which she’s viewing as a mere holiday away from her troubles.


There’s plenty of humor within the pages of Rachel’s Holiday

While addiction and recovery are traditionally not the most humorous of topics, this book incorporates funny moments. And I think that makes it more of an enjoyable, lighthearted read for me. There is a part in the book where Rachel has to visit a dentist and the dentist basically admits to being an alcoholic and almost committing suicide after a night’s bout of drinking. You’ll have to read it to enjoy the moment in its true context, but it made me chuckle at the dentist’s perceptions of an alcoholic and the fact that he spilled his guts to another addict in such an unprofessional manner.


I’ve been married for 12 years and so I enjoy reading about young couples trying to navigate challenges in their relationship. Rachel is 27 years old and, reading about her relationship with Luke, it was like a having a sneak peek into young love.

For every two steps I took forward, I took one step back. There were times when I just wanted to switch off, just check out of reality for a while, when relentless consciousness got me down. Nothing bad had to have happened, I just got tired of being sentient.

Addiction is not romanticized or celebrated

Addiction doesn’t seem sexy or romantic and nor is it celebrated. In this book is shows how addiction affects not only the individual – but friends, family and members of your community. It also doesn’t gloss over the hard work that it takes to learn to sit with emotions and not attempt to drown them out with drugs or alcohol. It’s hard work but ultimately so worth it.

P.S. If you want to see my other book recommendations for getting sober, I wrote a blog post about that, too!

inspirational book quote

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