The twentieth book I read in 2014 was Sophie Kinsella‘s Mini Shopaholic. This book was on my Mount TBR Pile as it has been on my Kindle for ages waiting to be read. I have now read 5 out of 12 books in this challenge.

This is number 6 in the Shopaholic series. I had put off reading this book because I was a little bored of this series. I remember starting this book when it was released and thought it was just like the others. I remember being disappointed and not getting far into the book. It has been a few years since then and this time I made it to the end of the book. Yes, it is very similar to the other Shopaholic books, and maybe not a brilliant read, but it was entertaining. I quite enjoyed this book, but I would recommend you don’t read the whole series in one go! I will write more in my review.

Addition: E-book
Genre: Chick-lit
Published: 2010
Rating: 3 out of 5

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This is hosted by: Breaking The Spine

Here are what I am waiting for:

Sophie Kinsella: Mini Shopaholic – hardback release date: 2nd September 2010

Becky Bloomwood is back – with a child! I can’t wait!

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Amazon description:

Becky’s life is blooming! She’s working at London’s newest fashion store The Look, house-hunting with husband Luke (her secret wish is a Shoe Room)…and she’s pregnant! She couldn’t be more overjoyed – especially since discovering that shopping cures morning sickness. Everything has got to be perfect for her baby: from the designer nursery…to the latest, coolest pram…to the celebrity, must-have obstetrician. But when the celebrity obstetrician turns out to be her husband Luke’s glamorous, intellectual ex-girlfriend, Becky’s perfect world starts to crumble. She’s shopping for two…but are there three in her marriage!

This is the final book in Sophie Kinsella’s Shopaholic Series, and it is just as good as the other books. Becky is a compulsive shopper, and this pregnancy has given her another reason to go out and spend a great big whack of cash. In regards to shopping, there were a few times I chuckled – like when Luke and Becky go pram shopping in a warehouse full of prams…scary to anyone!

There are other elements to this book, and series however. There is love, friendship – and in this book, jealousy and panic. Becky is a vain, self-obsessed women but I did feel sorry for as she went up against Luke’s ex-girlfriend. This is something I like about Kinsella’s writing – I feel empathy even when the characters are self-centred. I did like other characters – her mum is completely irrational, which is fun to read, and her friend Suze is just a gem.

This is pure female fiction. It is unashamedly girly. It is an easy, quick read. Fairly predictable and unrealistic – but that adds to the magic that is The Shopaholic Series. I have absolutely loved this series. It is engaging and gripping, light-hearted and fun. I’m sad that this is the end of the books, I’d love more. If you like chick-lit, this book is for you.

9/10

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Synopsis from Amazon:

Rebecca Bloomwood has the dream job. She’s a personal shopper, so is able to spend other people’s money all day instead of her own. And she gets paid for doing it. The perfect job, the perfect man – gorgeous Luke Brandon – and now…the perfect wedding. Yes, Luke has proposed and wedding bells are in sight. No excuses are needed to start the shopping trip of all time. And Becky’s parents are just assuming that the wedding will be at home – a marquee in the garden and Becky in her mum’s wedding dress, which she’s been saving specially for the occasion. But Luke’s mother has very different ideas – a huge affair in New York in a forest glade setting – or perhaps a Venetian Ball, or a fin de siecle extravagance? Now Becky’s getting confused. She doesn’t want to say ‘no’ to anyone. The plans are going ahead, and soon it will be too late to turn back – from either wedding…

This is the third book in the Shopaholic Series by Sophie Kinsella. To be honest, this has been my least favourite so far. This book takes us through Becky’s struggles as she tries to decide where to get married, and how to get out of one of the already arranged weddings. We watch as Michael is taken ill and Luke has a mid-life crisis and Suze gets married and has a baby, and we see Becky getting wound tighter and tighter into her web of lies and confusion.

Although the other books are unrealistic and predictable, this book was the worst for that. I didn’t enjoy this book as much as I have the others in the series. I found myself getting annoyed with Becky. In all the books she has been manipulative, but in the other stories I have felt for her, in this one I didn’t. I was intrigued, and finished the book, but wasn’t really drawn in and several times considered stopping.

There were people I did enjoy reading, such as Laurel, Michael and Suze. They made good reading – they were solid and honest, and many times Laurel and her grudges made me laugh. As always, Suze is a lovely friend and Michael is understanding and reliable. They make for enjoyable reading.

Overall, I wasn’t impressed by this book, I could take it or leave it. I really enjoyed Kinsella’s other works, but this to me was a let down.

6/10

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shopaholic-abroad

This is also known as: Shopaholic Takes Manhattan

Synopsis:

Will travel broaden the mind…or just loosen the purse strings?

For Rebecca Bloomwood, life is peachy. She has a job on morning TV, her bank manager is actually being nice to her, and when it comes to spending money, her new motto is Buy Only What You Need – and she’s really (sort of) sticking to it. The icing on the brioche is that she’s been offered a chance to work in New York.

New York! The Museum of Modern Art! The Guggenheim! The Metropolitan Opera House! And Becky does mean to go to them all. Honestly. It’s just that it seems silly not to check out a few other places first. Like Saks. And Bloomingdales. And Barneys. And one of those fantastic sample sales where you can get a Prada dress for $10. Or was it $100? Is Becky too dazzled to care?

Shopaholic Abroad – for the biggest culture shop of your life.

This is the second installment of the Shopaholic Series, and just as fabulous as the first. However, it is very similar to the first book. Does that spoil the story? Not at all! Becky is taken to New York by Luke, and ends up spending a ton. She is in a whole heap of debt – and soon her secrets become known to everyone when the Daily World exposes her.

This story is full of all the usual antics – shopping, friends, Luke, embarrassment, love and debt. The storyline is similar to Confessions of a Shopaholic and how Becky spends too much shopping, and has to work her way out of debt. There is a lot of time spent in London too, which I was surprised about – in fact, most of the storyline was based in London, which is one of the downsides of this book. However, I love this series! Becky is self-obsessed and a bit irritating but I still didn’t want anything bad to happen to her and rallied behind her when horrid things happened to her. And I loved Suze – I want a flatmate like her! She is so lovely, looking out for Becky as well as pursueing her own career.

I enjoyed the story – it was fast-paced, predictible and fun. I love Kinsella’s writing, fluid and enjoyable. Yes it is chessy and very girly, but I loved it! This is an easy read – and I highly recommend it. And I love the ending! I am looking forward to the next installment!

9/10

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This is also called:
“The Secret Dreamworld of a Shopaholic”

confessions-of-a-shopaholic

Synopsis from Amazon:

Meet Rebecca Bloomwood. She’s a journalist. She spends her working life telling others how to manage their money. She spends her leisure time …shopping. Retail therapy is the answer to all her problems. She knows she should stop, but she can’t. She tries Cutting Back, she tries Making More Money. But neither seems to work. The stories she concocts become more and more fantastic as she tries to untangle her increasingly dire financial difficulties. Her only comfort is to buy herself something – just a little something…Can Becky ever escape from this dream world, find true love, and regain the use of her Switch card? “The Secret Dreamworld of a Shopaholic”…the perfect pick me up for when it’s all hanging in the (bank) balance.

Well I loved this book! I was gripped from the word go. This is pure chick-lit – with a cheesy storyline, which was quite unbelievable and predictable, but did that effect the book? Nope. I was excited about reading it – I didn’t want to stop, I didn’t want the book to finish. We follow Becky through many spending sprees, many disasters and thoughtlessness and pain, and well, I loved it.

Yes, Becky was shallow, and manipulative, but I felt sorry for her and really wanted to know what was going to happen to her. I guess I secretly liked her character.The characters are all well written, and although I didn’t like some of them (the mean ones!) I liked how they were written; I could believe in them.

I laughed a lot through this book and was just thoroughly entertained. I think some people will dismiss this book as utter rubbish as it is a bit unbelievable and predictible, but I can’t help but give it the top rating because I felt so excited by the book, I didn’t want to stop reading, I was hooked, and actually I wasn’t disappointed at all.

10/10

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Description from Amazon:

Becky Bloomwood is back! Becky thought being married to Luke Brandon would be one big Tiffany box of happiness. But to be honest, it’s not quite as dreamy as she’d hoped. The trouble started on honeymoon, when she told Luke the tiniest little fib, about the teeniest little purchase. Now she’s on a strict budget, she doesn’t have a job – and worst of all her beloved Suze has a new best friend. Then she receives some incredible news. She has a long-lost sister! Becky has never been more excited. Finally, a real sister! They’ll have so much in common! They can go shopping together…choose shoes together…have manicures together…Until she meets her – and gets the shock of her life. It can’t be true. Surely Becky Bloomwood’s long-lost sister can’t…hate shopping? A sister, a soulmate, a skinflint?

This was a quick, easy-to-read chick-lit book. The story follows Becky as she comes back from their honeymoon to discover she has s sister and that her bestfriend has a new bestfriend. The adventure takes her up to Cumbria and even up a mountain.

Many issues are casually looked at in this book – such as family, marriage, materialism and friendship. There was nothing insensitive about how Kinsella writes and it was interesting to see what materialism and shallowness can potentially do to relationships.

I found Becky shallow and materialist, however I was often empathising with her. I did want good things for her and some of her experiences, in regards to friends I think we can all relate too. That and we like to treat ourselves sometimes!

I wasn’t convinced by the storylines, there were a few events that I found incredibly unrealistic, however that did not spoil the story. I related to the characters, I laughed and at times could have cried. I read the majority of the book in one day. The story line took a little while to get going and I did consider putting the book down, but I can honestly say I am glad I didn’t. This is a fun, enjoyable chick-lit book.

7/10

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