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Confessions of a Shopaholic - Sophie Kinsella

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Author: Sophie Kinsella / Genre: Fiction

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    23 Reviews
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      07.09.2013 01:23
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      I would recommend this to a teenage girl.

      Plot:
      Rebecca Bloomwood is a young woman who works as a finance correspondent for a small magazine, despite her low income she has an obsession with fashion, and good fashion on that. She lacks the ability to window shop, always managing to find a way to explain away buying 2 pairs of £100 boots, or an £180 scarf.
      Constantly being bombarded with letters from her various credit card companies demanding the settlement of her debts she fobs them off with feeble excuses such as glandular fever, a broken leg, etc.
      Finally realising her situation she begins to desperately try to rectify it, signing to up make frames for a company, not the solution, cutting down her spending, definitely not the solution! And finally deciding to marry her flat mate's multi millionaire cousin, who has had a crush on her for years!
      Whilst her troubles are occurring she is being cautiously pursued romantically by the head of a P.R. company, Luke Brandon.
      ***SPOILER ALERT***
      Finally, she gets her first big scoop; her neighbours were advised to swap their savings to a new company, just 2 weeks before all their customers received a massive windfall. Rebecca decides to do an expose on the situation.
      Much to her surprise her article is then bought by a mainstream newspaper, and she is asked to appear on a popular morning television programme. The head of PR for the company Rebecca is ousting just so happens to be Luke Brandon, and the pair are forced to debate the companies reasons and ethics on live TV.
      The company seem to like Rebecca's ability to explain finances in an easy-to-grasp way, and invite her to appear as the show's finance expert for views to call up, and the money's good too!
      So finally she's got some credit, and with Luke recently broken up from her girlfriend it looks like she might just get the guy too!

      Writing style and content:
      Sophie Kinsella is an excellent writer, her style is engaging and entertaining. She is able to easily paint a mental picture of the scene, and has a great knowledge of her writing matter.
      The first half of the book was quite tedious, it didn't seem to be going anywhere. It was just a list of Rebecca's obsessive purchases and her reasoning behind them, which became dull and frustrating after the first 2/3, and when you can see from the outside that what she was doing was a bad idea, it just made you want to jump into the book and tell her to stop being such an idiot, and to put down the designer boots!!
      Once the book actually began to have content though it was an entertaining read, although had I not been sat on a train with nothing else to do I probably wouldn't have reached that point.

      Reader profile:
      Young adult (most likely female)

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      24.04.2013 15:17
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      The first and the best

      Shopaholic is one of those books that is so easy to read that I devoured it in an afternoon when the kids were at their dads. The book tells the story of Becky Bloomwood who is a journalist at a financial magazine which is a job she hates as she bluffs her way through most of it by going to launches and just copying the information from the press releases. She would much rather be working on a beauty or fashion magazine.

      Although she works on a financial magazine and so should know better Becky also has a problem when it comes to shopping. Namely she can't get enough of clothes and items that she is convinced will make her life better. Once she decides she wants something she obsesses over it until she gets her hands on it much to the chagrin of her bank manager and credit card company.

      During the course of her work Becky meets Luke who is a successful business man and although sparks fly between them the course of true love never runs smoothly and can Becky curtail her shopping habits and get her life under control.

      I adored this book and thought it was hilarious. It is the beginning of a series featuring Becky and she makes a great heroine and one who is immediately relatable to most of us. She is a good person who just wants nice things in her life and who is willing to go in to debt to get them which is something that I and I am sure a lot of other women can relate to. She is also really likeable straight away even when she is doing all these mad cap things.

      The book is littered with laugh out loud parts and I found myself sniggering when reading it. I am only glad I wasn't on the train or else I am sure I would have gotten a lot of strange looks from people. There are some really funny parts which made me cringe as well as laugh.

      The romance part of the book works really well and I found myself rooting for Luke and Becky to get together. The romance was a bit predictable in parts but no less enjoyable for it.
      Luke was written so well that I found myself having a crush on him by the end of the book and unfortunately am still on the lookout for my own Luke.

      The rest of the supporting characters are also really well fleshed out especially Becky's best friend and her parents. Becky's mother gets more to do in further books as she is a standout amongst the supporting cast.

      This is the first in the Shopaholic series of books and although you could get away with reading them in any order as there isn't a lot of plot to speak of you really should start with this one as this and the second are my favourites in the series and while the rest of the books are good fun they haven't managed to reach the heights of the first.

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        17.09.2011 18:37

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        great fun book, easy reading

        This is a funny lighthearted book that is a perfect holiday read. You can relate to Becky Bloomwood's ways with shopping and understand how she feels when she see the wonderful 'sale' signs in her favourite shop windows.

        The book is an easy one to read a bit, put it down and read a bit more later which is good for an easy read book. It isn't anything too heavy that will take your mind and soul away until you have reached the end. There are other books in the series too that you could go on to read after if you likes it enough which is what I have done.

        The book is written by Sophie Kinsella and I personally like her style of writing. This book has now been made into a film but I haven't yet seen this as I normally prefer to read the book first.

        As you read on through the book, you will find yourself getting hopeful for Becky and think she has found her breakthrough and she will not have money troubles anymore. This keeps happening and when you get to the end of the book, you will have to see if she can manage to sort out her finances and be debt free.

        The book can be purchased from all good book shops for £7.99 but can be purchased from amazon at as little as £0.01 + p&p. I really recommend this book to women of any age really, anyone who loves shopping.

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        10.10.2010 16:43
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        a super and amazing book!

        After seeing the movie trailers being shown repetitive all over the TV, I just couldn't refuse to read this book after it popped through my door. And I'm so glad that I did, because I totally enjoyed it, as you can tell by my rating of the book.

        Sophie Kinsella is a new author to me, and although I know some of the books she has written, this is the first book I've ever read from her. I have just found out that Sophie Kinsella is a pseudonym used by Madeleine Wickham. I have to admit I dislike people who use a pseudonym; it aggravates me to think that authors such as Meg Cabot and Anne Rice and now Madeleine Wickham think it's a good idea to use a different name to publish their books, and it feels like they are doing it to delude the public. If anyone knows why authors feel the need to do this I'll e very interested in knowing. Anyhow, apart from that, I found this book amazing, and Sophie Kinsella's writing is amazing and it captured me in seconds. I sure hope the subsequent novels are just as good.

        This is the FIRST book in a series that currently has 5 books in it at this moment in time (although that could change soon). This one focuses on the main character: Rebecca Bloomwood. She is obsessed with shopping (so it's really easy for most people to relate to her) and she has recently gone into debt. So she tries to help herself, by buying lottery tickets and a self-help book and everything, however the one thing she does wrong is ignore the bank people who have been calling her up to talk to her about her outstanding debts.

        We learn very early on that she is a journalist, she went to Bristol University and presumably studied a journalism course (again I can relate to her as I want to go down that route, but not Bristol Uni), and she is now a financial Journalist working for "Successful Savings", however she is in a lot of debt and is trying her best to get out of it, but will she manage to do so? Well you'll going to have to find out!

        I don't know if there is a message hidden behind this story, I think that there might be, as in that sometimes you have to take a leap out of your own life, but also it tells you to be in control and know what you are doing. But if you don't care about that you can just read it, like I did, as an enjoyable read, because it really is like that!

        The genre for this is unmistakably chick-lit, but what really is chick-lit? People believe that it is only for girls, others believe that there is no such genre and books written by female's are just put into that genre. Me, personally, don't care what specific genre something is, as long as I find it enjoyable, who cares? But my theory is that chick-lit is basically rom-com (romantic comedy), as this is what I would put this into, and I would never ever tell someone not to read a book because it's only for girls, as that is extremely sexist, and books shouldn't be sexist at all!

        Personally I would say this book is similar to other novels such as Meg Cabot novels, and Janet Evanovich books, as they are in the same sort of style! I also love both authors and so of course I knew I'd like this book too!

        I found this amazingly interesting, and I could relate to the main character as I want to be a journalist in the future, and as I read more and more and learned more about her job, I got more and more interested purely because I knew that I would enjoy being in the job she was in, and I could see myself doing that (for the first time in my life, I felt strongly that I really wanted to become a journalist). So I have to admit I've got a lot of thanks for this book because I reckon I would have been still unsure what I would like to be in the future! Furthermore, I loved the writing style of this book, and it is extremely easy to get into and engaged me from the start! I also felt that the ending was amazing and it did come to me as quite a shock, which is always nice when that happens! And to be perfectly honest, I would definitely re-read this, if I didn't have a mountain of books that need reading!

        This book would appeal to many different people, people would say this is definitely not the sort of book I would enjoy purely because I'm a Goth, and I read many horror books, however that is not always the case and as you know I fully enjoyed this book. I hate being stereotyped, but everyone does it so there's nothing I can do about that. Personally I reckon people who have read and completely enjoyed Meg Cabot or Janet Evanovich's books will fully enjoy this book, but I'm not one to judge and you are the ones who should decide whether it's a book for you or not so it's really up to you to decide!

        I don't think I can say a bad thing at all about this book, I think it was amazing and good, and I couldn't stop reading it, but maybe the letters that are shown in the book may not interest many people and maybe a few people wouldn't like them, but they only appear a few times and I personally think they help structure the book and show us who the main character really is like.

        I have not watched the film yet, and the reason being is that the film is based on the first two novels in the series, this causes me a problem as I need to read the second book in the series, which, unfortunately is near the bottom of my amazingly long to be read pile, so do not expect to see a review on that for quite a while. The problem I've got is that I pass my books on to family and friends, and my sister has read the first book, and really wants to watch the film, however she doesn't like reading a book after she's watched a film (which I cannot understand as I do not mind either way) so I think I might just [ass this book onto her before I've read it.

        I have given this a rating of 5 stars out of 5 as I totally enjoyed it and the writing style is magnificent and I believe that I will forever enjoy this book and I find that I will enjoy the novels that come next in the series!

        Thank you all for reading, and I hope I have helped some of you out on the decision whether or not to read this book!

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          04.05.2010 14:22
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          If I was delighted with the movie Confessions of a Shopaholic, I was twice as delighted when I finally read the novel. Part of my enjoyment of the reading was the fact that I- like hundreds of other girls- could see myself in the story. This was one of the rare instances where I actually watched the film before reading the novel, and I have to say that the novel was really more engaging, gripping and definitely less shallow than the movie- even if I adored the film! Kinsella's writing is extremely approachable in Confessions of a Shopaholic, and her flair for a well-constructed plot, albeit a lack of powerful climax really comes across till the very last page. I do have to say that the film and the book were two completely different- but enjoyable- experiences!


          Rebecca Bloomwood is a shopaholic. It's virtually impossible to her to walk past a shop without entering it. She hates her job- working for a financial company and writing finance articles are not her kind of things, but it helps to pay the bills. However, the bills are mounting at an alarming rate. Rebecca tries to cut back on her spending, and take weekend jobs, but nothing seems to help. Rebecca sinks deeper into debts- and only shopping can take her mind off things...


          The overall plot has a rather gloomy edge to it, but I have to say that the story is written in an extremely upbeat and feisty tone. Despite Rebecca's recurrent financial problems, at no point did I feel overwhelmed or even depressed by the realistic happenings in the story. I think that many of us reach for a book to escape from real life, but the realism in the plot was really poignant: and yet, a great deal of escapism is provided because Kinsella kept a very light-hearted tone and humor all throughout. Had she adopted a different tone or less humoristic structure, I think that this book would have been an extremely dark read. The character of Rebecca in the book is even more feisty, daring and interesting than the character depicted in the film version. As usual, the author portrayed an extremely realistic personage that we can all find something to relate to.


          Being a self-confessed shopaholic myself, I have to say that relate to Rebecca in the novel was quite an easy thing to do. In fact, I think that many would understand this lure of pretty shoes, handbags or clothes that is so brilliantly depicted in the novel. Kinsella really played on the mind eye in Confessions of a Shopaholic; the visual aspect is so artfully crafted that you do get drawn in the happenings, as well as the emotions of the protagonist. I am someone who loves anything relate to fashion, and anything girly, and I was quite delighted by the vivid description of clothes/shoes/jewelry in the novel.


          It does sound like a shallow read- and to some extent it is. However, I noticed that whenever the plot becomes too shallow, the author discreetly pulls you back to reality by reminding the reader of Rebecca's debts looming in the background. I really admired this interactive side of the book. For example, the author randomly throws in letters that Rebecca receives from her debt collectors- and does not elaborate or even mention these letters in the main plot. This really did enhance my response towards the protagonist's situation.


          In typical Kinsella style, the wording and sentences are extremely casual and informal. The characters are all very well-developed and they are realistic ones that immediately draw you in. However, the one thing that I didn't like about the book was the rather abrupt ending. You are very much drawn and absorbed into the book- and then it ends. Just like that. Personally, I would have preferred a smoother and more gradual build up to the ending of the novel.


          Overall, very highly recommend. This is, according to me, a book that fans of chick lit are going to love. Love and romance fade in the background as shoes and clothes steer the story, but it is still a highly enjoyable and entertaining read.



          Thanks for reading!

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            16.03.2010 23:33
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            a funny,witty account of a shopaholics nightmare!

            Confessions of a shopaholic is a must read if you're one for chick flicks and witty comments. Since the moment i picked up this book I knew it was going to be a fantastic read. The book written by author Sophie Kinsella is about a financial journalist called Rebecca Bloomwood, who has more than enough financial problems of her own without having to handle everybody else's! She lives behind lies of her credit cards and massive overdrafts to please the people in her life including best friend Suze who always has her back. Rebecca has a dream to make it big and have all the money in the world so that she can splash out on high end fashion without having to worry about her ever familiar bank manager popping up on her mobile phone.
            But never did Rebecca think that her obsession with fashion and temptation to spend would land her one of the best businessmen in the country, Mr Luke Brandon, who is on his way to making millions!
            With her inspiring views and determination to buy a green Denny and George scarf, Luke decides to take her on at his firm and they end up going on a business trip where their friendship blossoms into so much more than they ever first imagined.
            I read this book when visiting New York and I can honestly say it made it even better as I related to her situation and walking down the streets of Manhattan in her manor would be funny footsteps to follow! This book is a must read as I said and only Sophie Kinsella could write with such whit whilst creating a story line which makes you not want to put the book down until the final page is finished.
            I definitely recommend this book and am looking to read the sequels to this fabulous read. The only fault if any with this book is that it made me laugh so much, I often looked silly when engaged within this read in a public place!

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              28.02.2010 18:40
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              light hearted entertainment

              Confessions of a Shopaholic, by Sophie Kinsella

              This book was originally titled 'The Secret Dream World of a Shopaholic', so you may have heard of either title.
              After finishing 'Diamonds are a Girl's best friend' (which I reviewed on here yesterday) in just two days, I was in a reading mood and craving something else to read. I was on holiday with the family, which can be like a holiday to hell at times!! (no offence to my lovely family of course!) So, I needed something else to read or I could see I was going to get in a mood and probably end with being annoyed or angry with my two younger and very annoying little sisters!!

              Whilst we were shopping in a town not far away from where we were staying, mum decided to take us all into a charity shops. At home, I must admit I never shop at charity shops, and really I think people should go to them more, because it means giving to charity and getting something out of it at the same time.
              So, we all went into British Heart Foundation. I could see there wasn't going to be anything for me in the clothes section or toys, so I went straight over to where the books, CDs and DVDs were.
              My mum, who was also looking at the books, offered to buy me something else to read (I don't have any money at all at the moment, thanks to some gatecrashers wrecking me and my friends party and now we had to pay for the damage) and so I had a browse to see if there was anything that looked appealing to me.

              Sitting there at the top of the shelf was this book. I pulled it down and read the back.
              Of course I had seen the film advertised on TV, and some friends of mine had been to see it and told me it was really good. So, I thought since the film was apparently so good, I'd read the book and see what that was like.


              About the Author
              ~I know this review is supposed to be about the book itself, but some people might want to know about the person who wrote it in order to make their buying decision. So that's why I've just done a little section about the author~
              I'll be honest (as I always am!) that I had never before heard of this author, either (I should probably get reading more)! Her name is Sophie Kinsella.
              I have researched online a bit about her, here is what I have found:
              She has got three sons, called Freddy, Hugo and Oscar. She lives with her family in England, and she used to be a financial journalist (which is also the occupation of Rebecca, the main character in the book).

              You can find out more about her at http://www.randomhouse.com/bantamdell/kinsella/.Other books you may have read or heard about by this author are:
              Can you keep a secret?
              The Undomestic Goddess
              Remember Me?
              Characters in the book ~ Plot of the Story
              The main character of this book is a woman called Rebecca Bloomwood. As the title of the book suggests, she is a huge shopaholic!
              All the characters in this book are very easy to relate to, and they are all very likeable. Rebecca is a fun, warm person who seems like she would be very easy to get along with if you knew her in real life. She is a really kind, friendly person who is also really intelligent, she just doesn't realise it.

              Rebecca is a financial journalist working in London, but her dream job is to be on TV. She can't afford her own flat; I think this is probably because of her spending habits!, so she shares with another girl called Suze, who happens to have lots of money. It seems that everyone around Rebecca has plenty of money.
              The ironic thing is that Rebecca is a financial journalist whose jobs is advising others how to deal with their money, when she is really bad at dealing with her own!

              Other main characters in the book are:
              * Rebecca's flatmate - who I mentioned before, she comes from a rich background. Her name is Suze and she is a really good friend to Rebecca and is really helpful to her. There are times in the book when you think thank God she is there to get Rebecca out of this mess! Such as the time when Rebecca desperately needs money so signs up to do some piece work, and gets sent some frames which she has to put together. She will get £300 for putting all the frames up, and she needs to pay off some debts. Unfortunately she is no good at making the frames, she finds them really difficult to make one and within about three hours has only made a couple really bad ones, basically making a mess so she realises she is never going to get all the frames make before her deadline and she just doesn't have enough time before then.
              One day when she comes home Suze has made up all of the frames for Rebecca so she can send them off and get the money to pay off her debts. Rebecca expects Suze wants the money, but kindly Suze says that she has only done these to help Rebecca by giving her a head start with them.

              * Tarquin, Suze's annoying cousin. He tells Rebecca that he has fallen in love with her and invites her to dinner. She says yes, hoping not to hurt his feelings and planning to later cancel and giving an excuse later on. However between this time she sees his face in a magazine under 'Richest Bachelors' and discovers he has over £25 million! She changes her mind and decides she will go after all! This is one of the times in the book where the story can be quite funny and can make you laugh out loud. I think this book is definitely comedy genre!
              In the end Tarquin gets the message that Rebecca does not like him, this is led up to by a series of events causing the reader to both cringe and laugh aloud!
              * Derek Smeath, from Endwich Bank. Before each chapter in the book there are a few pages which are letters from places such as banks, telling Rebecca things like "'buying clothes and make up' is not an acceptable reason for getting a loan" or there are letters asking for payment for some of the many items Rebecca has bought. These letters are all really funny and make you laugh as you read them. I really enjoyed reading the letters as they are a funny and interesting part of the book.
              Many of these letters are from Derek Smeath. Throughout the whole book he is trying to get hold of Rebecca to help her sort through her debts. You can see that he is actually trying to help her, but she keeps running away and either cancelling their meetings or just not turning up. At the end of the book it seems as though Rebecca will actually go to the meeting, but it turns out she cancels this one aswell.

              * Luke Brandon, Luke is a top businessman working for a bank, I think this bank is one of the ones in London, and that Rebecca reviews and writes about in her magazine everyday. In the book, you can tell that they are falling for each other. However they do have a 'rocky ride' as they say meaning they have some fall outs such as when they are in a store and Luke has invited Rebecca to help him choose a suitcase, she thinks he is coming on to her. Then he invites her to dinner revealing that the suitcase is for his girlfriend. Rebecca gets extremely upset, has a go at him and walks out.
              Another event where they have a 'disagreement' (as one could call it) is when they are both appearing on a breakfast show on TV and they are supposed to be arguing against each other about a crisis that has happened involving Luke's bank. The whole idea of the debate is for a financial expert (Rebecca) to be going against someone from the bank involved (Luke). At first Rebecca is extremely nervous when she finds out that it is Luke who is going to be fighting against her, but it turns out she need not have worried as she wins the debate, shows him up on TV, making him look like a fool, and it ends up with Luke admitting to the world watching that he thinks his bank is a really bad one and did a terrible thing and he will be handing in his resignation after that interview.
              After the interview Luke invites Rebecca to dinner the next night, for 'strictly business' purposes. Rebecca agrees - it is obvious she can't resist, although she keeps telling herself that she is only going for business reasons, like he said.
              The next morning, the two wake up next to each other in a posh hotel room, as I could tell they were going to all the way through the book, although at times you aren't sure if it will end this way after all. As soon as she wakes up, another laugh out loud event happens, which is Rebecca watching TV in bed and the shopping channels are on... she sees an expensive but irresistible offer on designer sunglasses and orders some right away! Despite the fact she has a meeting with Derek Smeath, from Endwich Bank that morning! They two of them are supposed to be sorting out Rebecca's debts and she has promised she will go, however, as always she gives into temptation and decides she will cancel the meeting and stay where she is with Luke instead.

              My Opinion on the book
              I loved reading this book as I found it funny, entertaining and I couldn't put it down. For me it is one of those books that from the minute you start reading you are hooked. The storyline is exciting, and there are times in the book when you are generally worried about what will happen to the main character, Rebecca, who you grow to love and care about as the book goes on.
              I would recommend the book to most girls and women who love books that make you laugh and have fun characters in them. It is good for girly girls and people who love a little bit of romance, as well.

              I think the book is suitable for everyone over the age of twelve. I don't really think it is suitable for children. The book is written really well and is very easy to understand from the way it is written, but there are some scenes in the book which I think younger children wouldn't understand, as there is quite a lot of finance related stuff in it and they may not understand what it is about.
              Also there are a few swearwords in the book and references to sex etc, so I don't think parents would particularly want there children reading this.

              Prices ~ Availability
              I got this book for a very good price- only £2.00 which I didn't even have to pay myself as my mum bought it for me! - from a charity shop which I would recommend to anyone who wants to read this to get it from a charity shop and help someone from it at the same time.

              The price on the back of the book is £7.99, so this is probably how much it costs in Waterstones etc, which I think is very expensive for a book. With most items, you could probably find it cheaper on sites such as Amazon or eBay. I'm also sure you could get the book in a library. I think the book should be available in all good book shops in this country as it is British and not American as a lot of books are.The good thing about this book is once you have finished it, and you want to read more if you enjoy it that much, there are more books after it in the same series:
              Shopaholic Abroad
              Shopaholic ties the knot
              Shopaholic and sister
              Shopaholic and baby

              (this is the order they are in inside the book, no idea if thats the order you're meant to read them in though)I think I will have to try and get hold of some of these books myself as I really enjoyed this one!
              I haven't yet seen the film, but I might rent it from Lovefilm or borrow it from someone if I find out anyone I know has got it!

              Any questions just leave a comment and I'll get back to you as soon as I can!
              Thanks for reading!

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                10.02.2010 13:22
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                Trust Sophie Kinsella!!

                If youve seen this film and are expecting the book to be a published version of its script.... then your in for a disappointment! They are virtually unrecognisable from each other.

                Having read the book years before the film came out (and having read the whole series over and over) i was totally excited for the movie - but was sadly disappointed... the film paled in comparison.

                The only good thing about that was the fact that it reiterated just how good this book actually is.... the main character; Becky Bloomwood, is a character that any girl can relate to (didnt you ever just HAVE to have that impulse bought purchase!) and you will find yourself sinking into her world and living her life alongside her.

                True testament to the book is the fact that i instantly bought the rest in the series - and was never disappointed once!

                A great girly book - perfect for the beach!!! If your struggling for a gift for your girlfriend... this is it!!!

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                09.02.2010 20:24
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                Confessions...good book, funny moments. Recommended

                A while ago I rented the film version of this book and both me and my wife found it to be an enjoyable watch. I reviewed the film on here and some of the comments I recieved from my fellow Dooyooers mentioned that the book differed from the film, and as I happened to mention this to my wife she decided to buy herself a copy to have a read and find out what the differences were.

                It didn't take her long to finish the book, a couple of days at the most, and as she chuckled all the way through it she mentioned to me that I should read it myself. I should point out here that that my type of book is generally horror and with the exception of reading a Marion Keyes book when I was desperate one year when I was abroad 'Chick-Lit' really isn't my genre or usual taste. However, there is a first for everything, and as the book came highly recommended I gave it a shot.

                Similar to the film, the plot follows a young woman by the name of Rebecca Bloomwood although people call her Becky. She is a journalist for a financial magazine and writes about personal money matters. She is smart, independant and seems to have the ideal life, however, despite owning all the latest fashion items and having impeccible taste Becky is also in debt.

                She juggles her credit and store cards maxing them out and only pays the minimum repayments each month. Her student overdraft from her uni days is well over its limit and Becky is starting to recieve letters from her bank asking her to contact them to discuss matters. Unable to deal with her debts but not wanting to face up to her problems Becky ignores the letters and continues with her flippant ways.

                As time goes on and the letters and phone calls become more persistant Becky decides that she has two options; Cut Back or Make More Money and we follow her in her endeavours to make these work all with varying results. A chance meeting and being in the right place at the right time takes Becky in a direction she never expected to go and what follows is a funny and charming tale that is easy to read and follow.

                As stated above, this isn't my usual genre and to be fair there were aspects of the book I couldn't relate too. Then again, I am a 37 year old man so this book wasn't written with my demographic status in mind. The designer names of some of the products that Becky longed for and the desirability of them are not something that I personally could relate to, however saying that there was plenty about the book that I could enjoy and lots that I found funny.

                I liked the portrayal of Becky as being somewhat ditzy and when she goes off into her own world in her mind she does come across as charming if not a little naive. The daydreams and scenarios she creates are often funny and I have to admit that even I could see similarities to one of her fantasies when she is convinced that she will be winning the lottery.

                The author - Sophie Kinsella has created a likeable character that i'm sure would recognisible to a lot of her readers - my wife included. Her writing is easy to read and flows nicely and it is an easy book to pick up, read a few chapters and then put down for a while. Although I'm more used to 'page turner' books where I can't put them down once I've started reading this made for a nice change of pace for me.

                Overall the plot does move in a forward direction albeit a bit slowly at first and fortunately for me there were not that many overly romantic moments apart from the inevitible one that I knew about from the film.

                Yes, the book does differ from the film and I was surprised by how much actually. Apart from the names and a few of the situations the majority of the book is different. I did like the film I have to say, so although I wasn't disappointed with the book I'm not sure now which version I actually preferred as they both had their good points.

                In summary then, I found this to be an enjoyable book to read that did have some funny moments. I can't say that I have been converted to the world of 'chick lit' but must admit to being intrigued as to what happens next to Becky, and given the fact that my wife has ordered the other books in this series it is safe to say that I may just find out!

                A fair rating from me would be 3/5 dooyoo stars, it wasn't the best book I have ever read and it wasn't the worst. It did pass a few hours, was easy to read and held my interest so for those reasons I would certainly recommend it. I have to add here that my wife says I should give it 5 stars, so from her point of view it was fabulous.

                Thanks for reading my first review of a 'chick lit' book, I hope I have been fair with my comments. I acknowledge that I am not your typical reader nor who the book was actually aimed at however other guys reading this may appreciate a blokes point of view.

                My wife bought her copy of this book from Amazon for a couple of quid and is available from their Market Place for less. Worth a read if you enjoyed the film, but be aware it is different!

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                  05.02.2010 20:47
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                  A fun, easy read which made a change for me.

                  I'll be honest, a few months ago I never would have considered picking up this book. However, since I began downloading books to use with my Reader, I've often ended up with titles as part of a job lot that I wouldn't have personally opted for. Undecided on what to read next, I decided to choose an easy, fun book until I made my mind up. This title fit the bill perfectly.

                  Little did I know that half an hour later I'd be anxiously turning pages (or rather pressing the "page turn" button as it were) and even laughing and gasping at loud at what happened. I was officially enjoying a chick lit book, and I couldn't believe it.

                  Which is why I decided to write this review. Book reviews are not something I do that often, unless a book particularly moves me to write about it, but this made me feel almost ashamed that I'd turn my nose up at titles like this in the past. Why SHOULD reading be all about important books and nice prose, can't it sometimes be fun and silly too? I now think so, and wholeheartedly vow to be more openminded in the future!

                  Confessions of a Shopaholic is the first in a series of books about Rebecca Bloomwood, who despite writing for a financial magazine is hopeless at managing her own money. Her main priorities at work are snatching an extra glass of champagne to hide under her chair in case the press conference gets boring and gossiping with colleagues. Any serious financial questions thrown her way are usually brushed aside because she really is completely and utterly cluless.

                  That's not to say that Becky is without talents. Quite on the contrary, if anyone knows where to get the best bargain on a pair of leather gloves or designer sunglasses, it's certainly Becky. Not that she bothers to pay too much attention to the pricetag herself. And she absolutely NEVER uses the same imaginative excuse twice when explaining to her bank manager why she couldn't possibly pay off her overdraft or go in for a meeting.

                  Unfortunately for Becky, the more lies she tells - whether it's about about knowing ANYTHING about mortgages or how much that new pair of boots really cost - the more likely she is going to get caught...

                  Like I said, I really enjoyed this book and found it really funny. Part of its humour is that it's very relatable. Aren't the best stand up comedians the ones who tell jokes where, after you finish laughing, you say "yes, that's SO TRUE"? The same applies here. Becky's rationalising purchases is all too familiar, even to me who, on the whole, keep my spending pretty well controlled (if anything, I'm tight). But it does strike a chord when she explains to her housemate Suze how she absolutely had to buy that pair of sandals, because they were on sale and, well, she is just making an investment, as now she will not have to buy any next year. Sound familiar?

                  Despite her quite obvious flaws and blatant lies which she can't seem to help pouring out of her mouth each time it's opened, Becky's character is quite charming and you can't help but root for her as she sinks to her lowest, self-inflicted ebb. It's like a trainwreck, you can't help but keep reading to see how it will end.

                  As an aside, I have also seen the movie, which I also didn't expect to enjoy and did. The plot is slightly different, I do actually prefer that of the book, but I think the characters are written well enough that casting must have been pretty easy, because they are spot on and if I was the author I'd be very pleased!

                  So, now I have to work my way through the rest of the series. I will be interested to see how long the author can keep the topic interesting through the entire set of books, I believe there are at least five. She does, after all, for the most part shop and regret it. Still, for an easy and light read this was a great choice.

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                    15.11.2009 20:44
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                    Great book :)

                    Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella is also known by its original name, Secret Dreamworld of a Shopaholic. I bought this book, because I had seen the advert for the film and thought it looked great, when I saw the book I thought it might be worth a read.

                    The book centres around Becky Bloomwood, a financial journalist who's sinking in her mountains of debt. Living with the high life with a great flat and wardrobe, she has been in denial about the fact that she cant actually afford it. She realizes that she will have to do something, because sitting there and hoping her debt would go away didn't really work at all. Every day, she gets serious letters from the bank and Derek Smythe which continue to worry her, these letters are included at the start of every chapter. However, she decides to ignore these and instead makes up a very funny story to cover which is essentially that the bank is stalking her. Her two plans to get out of debt are Cutting Back and Making More Money, however neither of these work and Becky starts to really worry about what she will do. Her attempts at these are really well written, and also quite funny, a good read.

                    The characters were also very believable as young single London socialites who weren't too serious, and really enjoyed their lives. Suze was someone I could totally relate to, she loves fashion and shopping but isn't really that interested in her job so doesn't have the money to fund her love. Good thing I don't have a credit card yet or I could be like that! Throughout the book we see her grow as a person and as a writer as she begins to look at things differently. During the book she becomes romantically entangled with two men, one she's trying to dump and one she desperately wants. Luke Brandon is the executive of Brandon communications, and bumps into Becky often during the course of the book. After one awful job interview, Becky walks into him yet again at a bank and spends a great afternoon with him in Harrods, only to feel totally used afterwards. However, she still fantasises about him and is really serious about wanting him to be her boyfriend. Meanwhile, Tarquin is her best friends cousin who shes hated for a while. However, when she spots that he's on the top 50 richest bachelors list, her feelings on the surface change, but it doesn't go well at all. Her best friend and flatmate is Suze, who is quite like Becky just without the debt as her parents are still paying her a hefty allowance. Throughout the book she is Becky's go to, and is always a reliable and loyal friend.

                    I enjoyed how the book is written, the letters from the bank really helped add a bit of realism to the book, it was something that you might expect to receive. The plot seemed like something that could happen in real life, and the characters were also great. Parts of the book were also quite funny and made me laugh, there were very different sections of the book.

                    The book was obviously quite well received since there was a film made, and also after it followed another four shopaholic books.

                    The author, Sophie Kinsella is really good and has written many other books in the chick lit genre, such as Remember Me and The Undomestic Goddess, both of which are very good.

                    The film was really different to the book, while still keeping the essence and the main themes of it. The most notable difference is that while the book is set in England, the film is set in London. It stars Isla Fisher and Hugh Dancy, and I have a separate review on it, written a few months ago.

                    When I bought it was good value because in WHSmith it was half price, and so I paid £4 instead of the normal £8. While I felt this to be good value, I would not have paid the full price, and this is normal as I usually only buy books when they are on special offer.

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                      30.10.2009 21:34
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                      Worth a read

                      Confessions of a Shopaholic - Sophie Kinsella

                      I need to begin by explaining that I am an avid reader. I read really quickly and my favourite kind of books are crime fiction, Phillip Pullman, autobigraphies and Terry Pratchett among others. I don't buy chick lit usually but will pretty much read anything so if I am given it, and will give it a shot as soon as I run out of other things to read. That is how I came to read Confessions of a Shopaholic which I believe has also been released on film. Since buying it, I have actually looked for others in the series, so watch this space for further reviews!

                      This novel introduces us to Becky Bloomwood. Becky hasn't met "Mr Right", is working in a job she hates and isn't particularly good at and has an addiction to shopping. This may not sound particularly original or entertaining but in actual fact, it is well written and surprised me by making me laugh.

                      I won't explain what happens so as not to spoil it for those who haven't read it but the book manages to contain some highs and lows and some very funny situations. Suffice to say, it is a light and amusing read which ends on a cheerful note. If you enjoy reading chick lit style books then this is sure to delight you. I am looking forward to reading more of the Shopaholic series!

                      I definitely recommend that you give this book a go, the characters are likable and the plot easy to follow and fun. Look out for the letters to the bank manager etc!

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                        18.10.2009 17:12
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                        Definitely worth reading

                        Confessions of a Shopaholic - Sophie Kinsella

                        Fiction

                        Confessions of a Shopaholic is the hilarious story of Becky Bloomwood, Rebecca graduated from university and began working in a job sha hates (and doesn't really understand). Becky has a big problem, she is a shopaholic and despite ever growing debts, she just can't help herself. This is because Becky was born to shop! She cannot resist that gorgeous designer bag, those stunning shoes or that soft and sensuous scarf - and she will go to any lengths possible to get them.

                        The book will have you laughing out loud. Of course it isn't life changing, doesn't really contain any deep and meaningful messages and is unlikely to make you a better person for reading it. It will however brighten up your day and make you laugh, which is always good.

                        Mrs Assasin bought this book and I recently started skimming it when I was unwell and unable to leave the house to buy myself something more manly. I always have to finish books once starting (even if they are awful, just in case they redeem themselves at the end) and am a very fast reader so within a few days, had finished this one. Mrs Assassin normally likes crime thrillers or autobiographies but was given this from a friend and found it hilarious, and I am not ashamed to admit that I did too! Yes it's chick lit but hey, we can't be sexist!

                        What else can I say, this book is very funny and should definitely appeal to the woman in your life, and who knows, maybe the man if they have nothing else to read!

                        A very funny book, well written and worth reading.

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                        09.10.2009 20:18
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                        Would recommend

                        I had never heard of this book until the film version came out at the cinema, staring Isla Fisher.

                        One look at the film trailer made me think - 'no way am I going to see that film' and 'that looks like a load of codswallop!'

                        Then at the airport one day I was looking for a book and I decided to try Confessions of a Shopaholic. I was sceptical because I thought it was going to be the 'chick flick' of the bookworld.

                        Plot>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

                        The book centres around the main character, 25 year old Rebecca Bloomwood. Rebecca is a a Financial journalist living in London.

                        This all sounds very impressive, but Rebecca herself admits that her job is a farce, and that she actually knows zilch about financial journalism, rather she 'blaggs' it on a daily basis. Rebecca also lives an expensive lifestyle, living in a lovely flat and wearing designer clothes. The problem is that Rebecca cannot actually afford this lifestyle, instead she is relying completely on her credit card.

                        Rebecca is a shopoholic and completely in denial.

                        I won't give the plot away, but the story leads to possible romance from an unlikely source, and after a series of tribulations Rebecca finds herself in a bizzare situation which changes her life and career.

                        Overall opinion>>>>>

                        I never thought I would enjoy this book - but I have to say that it was hilarious. I laughed from start to finish reading this book. Whilst I am more careful with my money than Rebecca, I could also emphasise and relate with her character. We would all like to be able to buy things we can't afford - however Rebecca actually does buy what she wants - by slapping the cost on her credit card and avoiding the consequences. This includes hiding bills and ignoring her bank manager.

                        I would certainly recommend this book. I haven't seen the film but my suspicions are that it will not be as good as the book!

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                          03.10.2009 16:59
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                          Overall a good chick lit book

                          For some reason i had read other books from the "shopaholic" series before i read this one. I was at the airport about to get on a long haul flights and spotted this on special offer as the film had just come out. I had really enjoyed the other books in the series so thought i would also enjoy this one and i did. I didnt enjoy it as much as other books from the shopaholic series but i still found it witty, funny with a bit of romance in there too. It definately had me laughing out loud on a few occasisions. Its quite a short book, as im a quick reader i finished in a 1 day around the pool.
                          The story is based around a character called Rebecca Bloomwood who has fallen into a job as a financial journalist - writing articles about personal finance and advising people on successful saving. However outside of work her life is completely different - she's addicted to shopping. The story basically follows her as she realises she's in debt and tries comically to spend less money, and when this doesnt work she tries to make more money with amusing consequences. The whole story is lighthearted and fun with a hint of romance - perfect holiday reading!

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