Marieke Hardy’s ‘You’ll be sorry when I’m dead’

I enjoyed listening to Marieke Hardy when she was on Triple JJJ breakfast. She was funny and irreverent, and there was a refreshing honesty. Perhaps something like vulnerability?

Those qualities are what’s likeable about this collection of essays. She writes about experiences she’s had, and she does it hilariously, but at the same time a touch poignantly. A three-way with a prostitute, being hit on by famous writers, and the collapse of relationships.

Hardy writes honestly about things that have happened, and she does it hilariously. But at the same time it feels that she uses humour to keep a distance. There’s a willingness to admit pain, and fear, and that’s commendable. But at times it feels that Hardy continually ends up saying about different events ‘This is what happened, isn’t life funny …’ – without a larger framework or conclusion.

That, I think, was what felt missing for me. These are funny essays, and they’re enjoyable – they’re good, light reading. But the opportunity to lift them above the standard ‘I’m a funny writer, now I’ve published a collection of bits and pieces I’d already written’ is missed. So it’s worth reading if you need something light, and it is genuinely laugh out loud funny, but at the same time I felt a sense of missed opportunity when I finished it.

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