Sunday, September 3, 2017

Book Review: 'My Not So Perfect Life' by Sophie Kinsella

Twenty-six year old Katie Brenner has decided to reinvent herself. Having been raised by her down-to-earth and protective dad on a farm in Somerset, for years she has dreamed of becoming a chic Londoner. Now she shares a small and unprepossessing flat with two roommates, and works for a pittance at Cooper Clemmow, a "branding and strategy" agency. It is too bad that Katie (who calls herself Cat) must answer to the stylish and sophisticated Executive Creative Director Demeter ("De-meeee-ter") Farlowe, a dismissive and scatterbrained genius who is known for her conceit, self-centeredness, and insensitivity. Things look up when Katie meets Alex Astelis, a handsome, funny, and charming hunk. However, Katie happiness is short-lived. She finds out that Alex is Demeter's boss, and rumor has it that the two are an item.

Sophie Kinsella's "My (not so) Perfect Life" is an engrossing tale of a good-hearted, intelligent, creative, and self-deprecating Cinderella who yearns to go to the ball (in her case, to be accepted among trendy Londoners). In addition, she would like Prince Charming to fall in love with her. When Katie's prospects take an unexpected nosedive, she temporarily shelves her ambitions and returns to her rural roots. Back with her dad and his partner, she learns the value of being true to herself; reaching out to others; resisting the false lure of designer labels and other status symbols; and embracing those who genuinely care for her. She also finds out that appearances can be deceiving. "Having it all” may be an illusion.

Sounds corny, no? Fortunately, the clever dialogue, off-beat characters, and zany plot machinations are lively, engaging, and frequently hilarious. Kinsella's accomplished storytelling has so much zest, warmth, and sweetness that readers should be captivated by "My (not so) Perfect Life," a breezy and heartwarming fairy tale.

Editor's note: This review was written by Eleanor Bukowsky and has been reposted with permission. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.

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