Well my opinion is really divided. I have read all of the books in the Shopaholic series and have enjoyed them all. I thing the biggest winner in the series is the character Becky. She is so loveable yet clueless and she manages to get herself in all sorts of bother.
The other side of the coin for me is when I sat on a plane and decided to watch the film that had been made from the book Confessions of a Shopaholic. The film, albeit not the worst I have seen, wasn’t great either for me. As usual the character I had built in my head was a major disappointment as I saw Isla Fisher trying (and failing) to play the part of Becky Bloomwood. Maybe this has been what lingered in my head the longest as I picked up the latest instalment in the Shopaholic series. Overall I have rated this book lower than I expected to but I suppose every series has its limits.
When we are re-introduced to Becky we see her back to her usual tricks of shopping for ridiculous things that she doesn’t need. We also meet her daughter Minnie who was written reasonably well and had taken on all of her mother’s traits, including screaming mine at regular intervals. We also see Luke her husband busy with his business Brandon Communications. As an ever patient person he tends to ignore a lot of Becky’s strange stories as this is part and parcel of who she is.
I still love the character Becky and think she is incredibly funny and her one-liners that she uses to get herself out of trouble are funny. However, this particular instalment of the series only had that to fall back on, Becky herself. The storyline was the weakest I have seen in a long time, with seemingly no structure at all. The whole plot is centred on Becky planning a surprise party, which considering the title is not what I expected. Yes we do see Minnie and her tantrums along with the addition of Nanny Sue who is a childcare expert. But that is it, literally!
I found myself dragging my heels and wondering when something was going to happen. Sophie Kinsella definitely has the skills as a writer but I am beginning to wonder whether this series has now had its day. I think the film production was what ruined it for me and from looking at other opinions it seems I am not the only one that feels that way. There were some redeeming qualities and that was things we have seen in previous books such as the relationship between Becky and her parents as well as her friendship with Suze and Tarquin.
It only took me a day and a half to read this book but ended up feeling quite disappointed, and felt that I had only finished it out of obligation. I can only hope that Sophie Kinsella either creates a new series or continues with her stand alone novels.