It’s Friday once again, and with it comes my last day of work for 2019! It’s been a whirlwind of a month, so I’m looking forward to getting into the office to clear out the desk and prepare for the new year. But before we can do that, how about a festive read?
Christmas Shopaholic, written by Sophie Kinsella, is the latest book in the Shopaholic series, and seemed the perfect option when I went looking for a lighthearted Christmas read. I had read other books in the Shopaholic series, but have never fully followed them, and I have to admit that Christmas Shopaholic would encourage me to go back to the start!
Becky Brandon (née Bloomwood) adores Christmas. It’s always the same – Mum and Dad hosting, carols playing, Mum pretending she made the Christmas pudding, and the next-door neighbours coming round for sherry in their terrible festive jumpers.
And now it’s even easier with online bargain-shopping sites – if you spend enough you even get free delivery. Sorted!
But this year looks set to be different. Unable to resist the draw of craft beer and smashed avocado, Becky’s parents are moving to ultra-trendy Shoreditch and have asked Becky if she’ll host Christmas this year. What could possibly go wrong?
With sister Jess demanding a vegan turkey, husband Luke determined that he just wants aftershave again, and little Minnie insisting on a very specific picnic hamper – surely Becky can manage all this, as well as the surprise appearance of an old boyfriend and his pushy new girlfriend, whose motives are far from clear . . .
Will chaos ensue, or will Becky manage to bring comfort and joy to Christmas?
So I will take a minute to admit – I listened to the audiobook firstly, which I’ll be honest – I didn’t like the narrator. Eventually I gave in and downloaded it to my Kindle to read it for myself, and I am so glad that I did!
Becky sounds a little like I could imagine myself – she is in love with Christmas and is that desperate to make it the best Christmas ever for everyone, she begins to lose control on every little thing going on in her life. The perfect presents, the multiple themes because she can’t settle on just one, family feuds and friends who really need their support system – Becky is pulled in every direction, and that’s before she even starts to think about making her daughter’s costume for the school nativity.
One minute you’re laughing at how ridiculous the whole thing is, the next your heart is torn for one reason or another. There aren’t any loose ends, and everything links somehow, with multiple well written characters. There’s one moment of “I saw that coming a mile off” but then you’re thrown so far the other way that you begin to doubt if you really did notice what was going on.
Beautifully written, and the perfect story for the lead up to Christmas, I would give Christmas Shopaholic 9 out of 10 – with one point deducted for having me crying into my pillow at one stage.
And to finish off before I head to work for the day, I’d like to leave you with a quote that I really took to heart from the book:
“Whatever the Grinch can steal, it’s not Christmas”
Happy Friday everyone!