2014

Shopaholic to the Stars – Sophie Kinsella

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Hardback: 400 pages

Publisher: Bantam Press (25 Sep 2014)

Book Description:  

Becky Brandon (nee Bloomwood) is in Hollywood! It’s as if all her life has been leading to this moment. She’s hanging out with the stars … or at least she will be, when she finally gets to meet movie superstar Sage Seymour, whom husband Luke is now managing.

There’s so much to see and do! And getting Minnie through the hurdles for her A-list Hollywood pre-school will require some…er…help.

Becky sets her heart on a new career – she’s going to be a celebrity stylist. Red carpet, here she comes! But Becky soon finds it’s tough in Tinseltown. Luckily her best friend Suze comes over to keep her company, and together they embark on the Hollywood insider trail. But somehow…things aren’t quite working out as they’d hoped.

Then Becky’s big chance comes, and it’s an opportunity that money can’t buy. But will it cost her too much?

My review:

BECKY IS BACK! OMG! I was so looking forward to this latest instalment of the Shopaholic series – it’s been too long.

Becky & Luke are now living in LA and Becky is up to her usual tricks of shopping and justifying everything in a crazy way – we’ve all been there.

I will start with what I disliked about this book (which I don’t really like to do) – and these are personal to me, and may not be viewed the same way be everyone. Firstly, I think it was lacking Becky’s interaction with her mum, dad, Martin and Janice. They always remind me of Bridget Jones’ parents (in the films) for some reason and I love the relationship between Becky and her dad. That said, they did have a role in the book but just not one sat in her parents kitchen making it all better like in the previous books. Secondly, for me, there were too many subplots – at one point i was thinking “how will these all get resolved” – and to be honest, they didn’t which did leave me feeling a little disappointed BUT it does leave the door wide open for a follow up book (hopefully soon). And Thirdly, I didn’t find it very believable that the children were left as often as they were. Becky has always been a doting mother to Minnie but i felt in this book she was a big neglectful of her.

Now the positives: I LOVE the relationship between Becky and Suze – it’s so gut wrenchingly sad when it feels like it’s going wrong. Of all the relationships Becky builds up in her life, Suze and Luke are the two constants who keep her grounded. I loved that Becky jumps on the LA fads and it gives Sophie Kinsella the chance to take the mick a little out of “La la land”. I also love how easily Becky makes friends and how she gets so distracted by clothes and shopping – we’ve all been there.

I love how every Shopaholic books sees Becky do something which has the potential to rip her and Luke apart and you can spend the majority of the book thinking “oh no, this will be the end of them” but at the same time I do find myself now also thinking “why doesn’t she just sit down and tell the truth” – Luke has already forgiven her so much in the past.

I loved that all of the old faces come back into the story – Danny, Suze, Tarkie, Alicia Bitch-Long-Legs……  It would be so easy to leave them behind. I would’ve liked to have heard a bit more, or even seen, Becky’s sister and Tom but maybe they will be involved in the follow up story.

I did find the ending frustrating – i was reading it on my Kindle thinking “I’m 98% of the way through, how can it nearly be the end”. But, that said, it left me wanting more.

All in all, a good book with a good, fast pace and lots of subplots. A good holiday read, or a good book for a weekend on the sofa eating chocolates! Well done Sophie Kinsella – bring on the next book.

As a footnote: I kept on visualising Becky as Dawn O’Porter as she often tweets about clothes and has moved to USA for her husband’s work. I really couldn’t get that image out of my head!

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