MY NOT SO PERFECT LIFE
By: Sophie Kinsella
Narrator: Fiona Hardingham
Penguin Random House Audio/Random House Audio
Genre: Fiction – Humorous – General Release
Date: February 07, 2017 12 Hours
I voluntarily reviewed a publisher-provided, review copy of this book. No remuneration was exchanged and all opinions presented herein are my own except as noted.
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Part love story, part workplace drama, this sharply observed novel is a witty critique of the false judgments we make in a social-media-obsessed world. New York Times bestselling author Sophie Kinsella has written her most timely novel yet.
Everywhere Katie Brenner looks, someone else is living the life she longs for, particularly her boss, Demeter Farlowe. Demeter is brilliant and creative, lives with her perfect family in a posh townhouse, and wears the coolest clothes. Katie’s life, meanwhile, is a daily struggle—from her dismal rental to her oddball flatmates to the tense office politics she’s trying to negotiate. No wonder Katie takes refuge in not-quite-true Instagram posts, especially as she’s desperate to make her dad proud.
Then, just as she’s finding her feet—not to mention a possible new romance—the worst happens. Demeter fires Katie. Shattered but determined to stay positive, Katie retreats to her family’s farm in Somerset to help them set up a vacation business. London has never seemed so far away—until Demeter unexpectedly turns up as a guest. Secrets are spilled and relationships rejiggered, and as the stakes for Katie’s future get higher, she must question her own assumptions about what makes for a truly meaningful life.
Sophie Kinsella is celebrated for her vibrant, relatable characters and her great storytelling gifts. Now she returns with all of the wit, warmth, and wisdom that are the hallmarks of her bestsellers to spin this fresh, modern story about presenting the perfect life when the reality is far from the truth. http://www.penguinrandomhouseaudio.com/book/251141/my-not-so-perfect-life/
Ever since I read CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC I have enjoyed Sophie Kinsella’s books. This one is no exception and sparkles and lifts my spirits in much the same way as SHOPAHOLIC does.
The narrator, Fiona Hardingham, has that perfect, effervescent voice; the perfect aural embodiment of the characters. There were two characters in movies: Miranda Priestly from THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA and the boss in Amy Schumer’s TRAINWRECK, on whom one can imagine Kinsella based her “boss” character, Demeter. Hardingham nails the voice of the forty-something, as well as the younger women and the men in the office. But she also nails the creamy country voices of the people back at the farm where Katie grew up — not an easy feat but she handles it with the grace.
The story reminded me of the lyrics in the Sheryl Crow song, SOAK UP THE SUN “It’s not having what you want It’s wanting what you’ve got.” Katie doesn’t want all the excesses she sees in her co-workers lives. She thinks they’re a little crazy to spend so much on organic this and authentic French Oak that. But she is a keen observer of humanity and given a food in the door would be a wiz. Plus she has something that makes her a good candidate to be a boss, she is decent, polite, cares about people and also understands them.
She is also able to change how she sees people. Unlike Mr. Darcy, her opinion of a person can change for the better.
Speaking of Mr. Darcy, I do not think Kinsella writes Jane Austen fan fic, but I do think she writes a little like her; in the way she handles class divisions, career, and values.
I was pretty impressed, by both this book and Kinsella’s body of work. But, lest you think it is weighed down in heaviness let me assure you this is really fun too; it’s a book that will have you rooting for the the boss and the employee.
If you love Chick Lit, humorous contemporary romance and something that will make you feel good then MY NOT SO PERFECT LIFE is the book for you. HIGHLY Recommend.