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Sail Away

3.74  ·  Rating details ·  562 ratings  ·  52 reviews
The deliciously effervescent new novel from Celia Imrie, beloved character actress and author of Not Quite Nice, follows the exploits of two women on a cruise ship.

The phone hasn’t rung for months. Suzy Marshall is discovering that work can be sluggish for an actress over sixty—even for the star of a wildly popular 1980s TV series. So when her agent offers her the plum rol
Paperback, 364 pages
Published June 19th 2018 by Bloomsbury USA (first published February 22nd 2018)
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3.74  · 
Rating details
 ·  562 ratings  ·  52 reviews

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Jun 06, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Sail Away by Celia Imrie is a contemporary story with a bit of mystery involved. The book follows two different women as they both go about their lives with their paths being drawn together and crossing.

Suzy Marshall is an out of work actress that finds that jobs get harder and harder to obtain now that she is in her sixties despite being on popular programs years before. When her agent contacts her with an opportunity she immediately gets excited thinking she will finally have something to pay
Ammie *Ammie's Book Obsession*
Review originally published on Ammie's Book Obsession



*Thanks to the Publishers for a paperback review copy in exchange for an honest review.*

It's all about a Cruise!!

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Get ready to get on an adventure because where there are ladies, it's always fun!!!

The story revolves around Suzy Marshall, a popular 80s actress who's no longer getting any work in the industry. One day her agent gets her a job but due to certain circumstances the play is canceled and she is left unemp
Feb 24, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, fiction, mystery, travel
Celia Imrie is an excellent actress, but I found her writing in this book mediocre. The plot is somewhat convoluted at first as she tried valiantly to make up sensible reasons why all of her characters have ended up on the same boat and after that it chases itself round in circles a bit with people being able to fake IDs and identities with ease...
Sally Whitehead
Mar 10, 2018 rated it it was ok
I received this as part of a Goodreads Giveaway.

The opening section was great fun and I read the first 100 or so pages really quickly, it was all just the right side of camp and theatrical.

However, by the final 100 pages I was ready to throw myself overboard as I found myself stuck on this ship with a melodramatic plotline being laboriously dragged out for far longer than necessary. It all seemed to sort of lose sense of what it wanted to be - farcical comedy? Why then throw in themes of a much
Feb 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My first novel by this immensely talented actress who now is becoming an immensely talented author!

A light-hearted, fun farce based around the antics of a couple of 60 ish women who both find themselves on a cruise ship for different reasons that lead their lives to be linked together. I liked Imrie's style of writing, obviously dipping into her vast theatrical background and using her great sense of humour to deliver an enjoyable fun read.

Lots happening in this book; likeable characters that w
SnoopyDoo's Book Reviews
Jul 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc



*I received a free copy from the publisher and chose to leave a voluntary review. Thank you!*



3 ★



This, for me was the perfect summer read. Set on a cruise ship, exploring the world and enjoying the sun.

I really enjoyed this book, and most of everything about it.

I really liked the characters and they seemed real with real problems and easy to relate to. 

The story was fun and easy to follow as well and I enjoyed it a lt. There were quite the few laugh out loud moments in the boo

Megan Jones
Apr 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Suzy Marshall is discovering that acting for a woman over sixty is a struggle. When she is offered the role of Lady Bracknell in The Importance of Being Earnest in Zurich, she jumps at the chance. Until, the play is abruptly suspended and she is stranded. In desperate circumstances, Suzy takes a job on a cruise ship to get home. Meanwhile Amanda Herbert finds herself homeless in rainy Clapham. Her flat purchase has fallen through and she is faced with exorbitant hotel fees. Then she spots an adv ...more
Jun 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Suzy is an unemployed actress of a certain age, desperate for a job, who finds herself lecturing on a cruise ship after a strange and unpleasant gig in Zurich falls through. Amanda is a widow who has just sold her house but whose plans for moving into an apartment have fallen through. She finds herself on the same cruise. Then there's Jason, who swears he's not responsible for the debacle in Zurich, and who takes a job on the ship as a gentleman host, dancing with unescorted women. What could ha ...more
Franziska Self fisken
Light-hearted, fast-paced, amusing romp starring 2 60-odd Englishwomen whose lives become entwined due to a scoundrel. Humorous rather than witty, I shall certainly happily read more books by Celia Imrie!
I enjoyed reading yet another book with elderly heroines. Am realising that this is the new genre for fiction and films, just as romantic fiction featuring tired middle-aged divorcees appeared circa twenty years ago. Will I await fiction featuring 80 year olds in the 2030's?
May 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
Intrigue on the High Seas

I’ve never been on a cruise ship but I almost feel like I have after reading Sail Away. I expected a fun, light summer read and was not disappointed. I didn’t see the twists coming and was surprised to learn how the characters were ultimately interconnected.

Sail Away is the story of two older British women who each ends up on the same three week cruise ship. It is an entertaining read with some amusing characters and a few laugh ts along the way. There are a few twists
Rhonda Lomazow
Jun 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
A cruise ship two women a delicious read a bit of a mystery.A perfect read to help you sail away even if you never leave your couch.Aperfect summer read,
Namrata Saigal
Feb 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Quintessential brit chic-lit that never ever gets dull... waiting to read more works from Celia Imrie
Asma (oasisgirlmd)
May 23, 2018 rated it liked it
Haven't read a summer contemporary in a long time,so this was a nice change.

* The setting was fun, on a cruise ship and I practically felt I was on one while reading this
* I liked the little trivia I learnt about actors and what goes on behind the scenes.
* Was a tad slow but really picked up towards the last half. The plot was great and a thriller set on a cruise ship made this extra delicious.

* Seemed a little dragged on in the middle.

Apr 12, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: proof-copy, own, fiction
I was sent an uncorrected proof copy of this book by Goodreads in exchange for an honest review. All views and opinions are my own!
The Plot

(from inside cover)

Suzy is discovering that work can be sluggish for an actress over sixty - and when her latest play is abruptly cancelled, she is forced to take a job on a cruise ship to get home.

Meanwhile, Amanda finds herself homeless in rainy Clapham. When she spots an advertisement for an Atlantic cruise, she realises three weeks on-board might just kee
Jenny Cooper
Mar 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: book-club
The two main characters in this book are Suzy, a struggling actress in her sixties who has been stranded in Europe after a show has been rather abruptly cancelled in mysterious circumstances and Amanda, a youngish grandmother who is trying to downsize but is having enormous complications with her new property purchase and finds herself temporarily homeless. Both of them end up on a transatlantic cruise liner, Suzy to work her passage home and Amanda because a last minute deal was as cheap a way ...more
Joy Freemantle
May 03, 2018 rated it really liked it

Full Steam Ahead for an Enjoyable Voyage

The plotline of the novel centres around two contrasting women in late middle age. The first, Suzy, surely owes much of her experience and quite a bit of her character to Celia Imrie, her creator. She is an experienced actor, a confident and resourceful woman who is clearly attractive to others and fun to be with. The other, Amanda, differs completely. She has been cheated on by her husband, and is repeatedly used and ignored in turn by her unpleasant, gro
Oct 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A totally fun book about an actress searching for work and a woman who sold her house and bought a new apartment only to find out that the seller was having second thoughts. What to do? For Amanda Herbert it meant back to searching not only for a new apartment, but where to stay that night? Her daughter was no help, basically telling that she could stay for one night, and one night only. Meanwhile, Suzy Marshall was thrilled to be hired as Lady Bracknell in "The Importance of Being Earnest" for ...more
Louise Culmer
Jun 10, 2018 rated it liked it
A mystery set on a luxury cruise ship crossing the Atlantic to New York. Two women, Suzy, an actress working on the ship, and Amanda, a passenger, are involved in solving the mystery. the actress, Suzy, takes the the job on the ship because she has no money, despite having appeared in a very succcesful 1980s tv series, which is now forgotten. in real life, she would probably have a steady income from repeat fees as her very popular show would undoubtedly be rerunning on One of the numerous chann ...more
Nikita Jhanglani
May 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The author takes sometime to build a backstory for both her lead characters, Suzy and Amanda. The story takes its time to build but when it picks up pace, you’ll know how important that backstory is. The buildup gives you time to understand the characters and enjoy their journey.

The story is visualized beautifully. Celia pays attention to small details when creating a scene, which makes for easy visualization. And she does that perfectly well, without really harping on the minutest details; givi
Shevington Library
Jun 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Tuesday Reading Group at Shevington Library. Wigan
Meets at on Tuesday, monthly, 4th, 12:00-13:00
We meet on the 4th Tuesday of every month, in the Art Gallery space at Shevington Library. We like to tackle all sorts of literature, and follow it up with discussions of our likes and dislikes. We are friendly and open to new members. Come along and Join us.

Our set book for this month was "Sail Away." by Celia Imrie. It was much enjoyed by the group Why not read some of their thoughts about this tit
Feb 25, 2019 rated it liked it
I really like Celia Imrie and read and enjoyed her previous two books - partly because they were very light reads and not too demanding. I struggled with this book a bit. It was a mix of the light and the dark and I was not convinced that this entirely worked. There were some jokey parts, such as the cruise guest who misspoke on numerous occasions. However, the darker parts of this book made for a slightly uncomfrtable read. Partly because of the subject matter, but also partly because I wasn't ...more
Apr 17, 2018 rated it liked it
I enjoy Celia Imrie's books for the escapism and light fiction, and this one did provide both. It was a little slow in the beginning, but as the two main female characters, Suzy and Amanda, meet on a cruise ship and their stories intertwine, the pace picked up. The setting was fun for me since I am a cruise lover. Suzy is hired for an acting job, even though as she ages they are few and far between. Amanda is feeling lonely after selling her house and looking to move on. Suzy and Amanda are unkn ...more
Bobbie N
Sep 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
60-something British actress Suzy Marshall is offered the role of Lady Bracknell in The Importance of Being Earnest playing in Zurich - a play that is abruptly cancelled under suspicious circumstances, and, to make ends meet, she takes a job on a cruise ship to get home.
Amanda Herbert finds herself suddenly homeless when the purchase of her new apartment falls through, and discovers that spending a few weeks onboard an Atlantic cruiseship will be less costly than other alternatives until her hou
Lisa Pritchard
Apr 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The basis for this - two actors in need of work and a temporarily homeless woman all embarking on a cruise ship - seems like the story should be a jolly romp, but it’s darker than this, with one particularly villainous man at the heart of their problems. It’s an unlikely tale in many ways, but Celia Imrie has explanations for all the parts where incredulity might otherwise take hold. Thanks to Bloomsbury for my free copy of this enjoyable book.

I've been reading this in the lull before the WC 2018 final match between France and Croatia, and I don't think my difficulty with this book has anything to do with that. For me the writing doesn't flow smoothly and the story moves very slowly with almost no dialogue among the characters to relieve the boredom. So I'm leaving the book at around 35% read. 2 stars for protagonists who are around 60 years old.
Sep 21, 2018 rated it liked it
A very good descriptive of a transatlantic crossing...the food, entertainment, tea time, unfriendly seas. What is not good is a silly mystery with obvious clues leading the reader to accurately predict the ending at the halfway point of the story. The author restates the premise of the mystery continuously...and unnecessarily... as the story attempts to evolve.
Mar 11, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not "a hilarious romp and a delicious tale of intrigue"

It was well written and initially entertaining but really began to drag. It became ridiculously and unnecessarily complicated. It wasn't funny, let alone hilarious, although I could see it adapted into an amusing if farcical film, with Celia Imrie and Imelda Staunton.
Jo Varley
Jan 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: light-fiction
loved this book, an easy read in three days. seen other review questioning some aspects of cruising being untrue and the second half of the book being dull - well I disagree with both. the writing re the cruise took me back to my own experiences. as for the end of the book I found it fascinating and couldn't put it down. left me wanting to continue with the characters.
loved it
Jul 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is her third book I read. I enjoyed it and there was A crime twist in this one. Her eccentric characters are quite good and life on board ship. I think porridge is as Irish as it is Scottish now and tastes much nicer.
Oct 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Amusing at times and interesting setting but I though Jason was very forgiving of Suzy’s acceptance that he was a crook and to blame for all their troubles. I also found it inconceivable that she would be chasing around the ship physically tackling the much larger villain.
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Celia Imrie is an English actress.
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