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Shopaholic to the Stars by Sophie Kinsella (audio)

Source: Public Library
Audiobook, 12.5 hours
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Shopaholic to the Stars by Sophie Kinsella, narrated by Clare Corbett, is a fun romp with Becky Brandon (nee Bloomwood) in the Hollywood hills as her husband, Luke, takes a temporary marketing position with actress Sage Seymour.  Becky is thrilled with the idea of being in Los Angeles, and she suddenly envisions a life of red carpet affairs, movie premiers, and becoming a stylist to the stars.  Becky, Luke, and Minnie are swept up into all things Hollywood, but Luke, naturally, remains the most level-headed.  Despite Becky’s over-shopping issues, which manifest in pre-purchases for stars she either has barely met or never even had any contact with, she’s managed to make some connections and be set on the path of her dreams.

Things get a bit complicated when there is a very public mix-up that fuels and ongoing feud between Sage and her movie-star rival, Lois Kellerton.  However, any potential character arc with Becky has ceased, at least so it seems in this book, and readers are likely to see her return to her old, selfish ways that often got her into too much trouble and places where her own rationalizations sound feeble even to her.  Although she now realizes, at least some of the time, that her rationalizations for purchases and bad behavior are just that, she continues on a path that while amusing, is devastating to those around her, even without her meaning it to be.  She even finds herself wrapped up so tightly in Hollywood’s machinations that she doesn’t think to herself that she should just walk away.

Becky’s head used to be easily turned by the prettiest bobble or the latest fashion, but in this one, her head is turned by attention, as if her husband and daughter do not dote on her constantly.  Her ego is larger than the series at this point, and while readers may want to see what happens after the end of this really open-ended book, they may not want to read more of the same character.  Shopaholic to the Stars by Sophie Kinsella, narrated by Clare Corbett, was fun to listen to and Kinsella is definitely a talent when it comes to writing quips, comebacks, and witty dialogue, but by the seventh book in the series, we want more depth from Becky Bloomwood.  While an entertaining way to spend the afternoon, the series has become a bit stale.

About the Author:

Madeleine Wickham is a bestselling British author under her pseudonym, Sophie Kinsella. Educated at New College, Oxford, she worked as a financial journalist before turning to fiction. She is best known for writing a popular series of chick-lit novels. The Shopaholic novels series focuses on the misadventures of Becky Bloomwood, a financial journalist who cannot manage her own finances. The books follows her life from when her credit card debt first become overwhelming (“The Secret Dreamworld of a Shopaholic”) to the latest book on being married and having a child (“Shopaholic & Baby”). Throughout the entire series, her obsession with shopping and the complications that imparts on her life are central themes.

  • Anna (Diary of an Eccentric)

    Yes, it did feel stale. I keep hoping that Becky’s character will evolve, but then it’s just more of the same. Sigh.

    • I’m interested to see what’s going on with her dad, but it will definitely be something I take out of the library

  • bermudaonion(Kathy)

    I totally agree – this didn’t have the sparkle the early books did.