Dec 25, 2010

Review: Mini Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella

  • ARC: 395 pages
  • Publisher: The Dial Press (September 21, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385342047
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385342049
  • Source: ARC from the publisher
  • My rating: 3.5/5
”Becky Brandon (née Bloomwood) thought motherhood would be a breeze and that having a daughter was a dream come true a shopping friend for life!
But it s trickier than she thought; two-year-old Minnie has a quite different approach to shopping. She can create havoc everywhere from Harrods to Harvey Nicks to her own christening. She hires taxis at random, her favourite word is "Mine" , and she s even started bidding for designer bags on ebay.
On top of everything else, there s a big financial crisis. People are having to Cut Back including all of Becky's personal shopping clients and she and Luke are still living with Becky's Mum and Dad. To cheer everyone up, Becky decides to throw a surprise birthday party on a budget but then things become really complicated.
Who will end up on the naughty step, who will get a gold star and will Becky s secret wishes come true?”

I was offered an ARC of this book in August. First I must confess that I'm not much of a fan of neither Kinsella nor chick-lit in general, but this one was just to cute to resist (yeah, I'm that shallow). I have had a taste of the Shopaholic series at my freshman year, and I knew what it could/would offer. I'm in two minds whether I loved it or hated it.

Sophie Kinsella has a witty way of writing, and it's just unbelievable what Becky will get herself into to satisfy her cravings. Add the spoiled brat and a financial crisis and trouble is inevitable. It made me laugh out loud several times, but also infuriated me more than once.
I just don't get it. In the previous books, the shopping disorder was more or less just Becky's problem to deal with.This trade of hers had been exaggerated to the fine limit where it was still funny. But in this installment, you have a husband who is working his arse off to provide a living and a child to take care of and at some point it stops being funny and becomes annoying. Throughout the novel I was just wondering when Luke will say he's had enough of Becky's immaturity and irresponsibility. She keeps lying to him about the party and the money she spends, not to mention her failed attempts to put Minnie straight. Minnie is a spoiled brat. As much as some of her mischief ringed a bell (mommy of a three-year-old, anyone?), she is plainly a product of her mother. Want to stop a toddler screaming "miiiiiiine" at every shiny thingy she sees? Set an example and stop taking her on shopping sprees. Be a mother, not a shopping partner.

Mini Shopaholic was a fun read, as simple as that. I loved Mini Shopaholic for the fun-factor, but in general some things bothered me heavily, especially the family where everyone is literally buried under clothes, toys and shopping bags, and yet everyone is being so damn understanding, mostly turning a blind eye to Becky's lapses and Minnie's mischief. Hard-core fans of the series will probably love it much more than me, but in the light of the previous installments, for me it's just the fun it provides that gets this book generous 3.5 points from me.
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