I have been waiting for a new Kinsella novel for a while now and then I almost missed it. Only by accident I found out that there was a new book comin...moreI have been waiting for a new Kinsella novel for a while now and then I almost missed it. Only by accident I found out that there was a new book coming out last Thursday. I pre-ordered it a few days before it was released and had it in my mailbox on Friday. I started reading yesterday afternoon and just finished it.
The second I started, I was hooked. Sophie Kinsella has an amazing talent to start in the middle of the story but in a way so that you feel you know the main character after the first few pages as if you would have known her for ages already. This could also have been a Shopaholic novel since Poppy, the main character, resembles Becky Bloomwood extremely in the way she is behaving and reacting. Perhaps that is also the reason why I loved this book so much. The story is totally independent but Poppy also ends up in weird situations that she could have avoided and manages to deal with these situations in an extremely comical and entertaining way – just like Becky.
Sophie Kinsella even makes footnotes, something I usually hate, a real pleasure to read! Those where the best footnotes ever and a fantastic idea that winds through the whole story and even becomes part of the story in the end. Normally, footnotes are extremely annoying because you have to leave the main text in the middle of a sentence just to read something completely different at the bottom of the page and then you are completely lost and have to search for the place within the text where you stopped to initially look at the footnote. But in I‘ve got your number it is totally worth interrupting the main text to have a look.
Another thing I noticed lately is that more and more authors use emails, chat- and text messages as part of their story. This is a really modern way of telling a story but fits into our modern world perfectly. Real life shows that in love stories modern forms of communications play a massive role – especially in times of smartphones. Kinsella adapts to this modern development and creates a great story of two people getting to know each other through emails and text messages to an extend that they know a lot of each other even though they have not met a lot in real life.
Kinsella also tries to explain the female behaviour in different situations of life. While men are usually pretty straight forward and directly say what they think, many women mean something completely different when they say or write something. Women tend to find the deeper meaning in everything a man says or writes and do not get that it might be just what he said. Perhaps it would be helpful for men to read a Kinsella once in order to understand their female counterparts better… on second thoughts… they might also think we are all as crazy as all of Kinsella‘s protagonists so better not…
On the other hand, the dangers and disadvantages of this form of getting to know each other become perfectly clear in this novel. A text message or an email are just what they are. They are shorter than the spoken word and they can be misinterpreted in many different ways. This can make getting to know each other even more complicated as it might already be.
In the end, what I really enjoyed with this book was that it was so extremely well plotted. Every single detail is important for the story and will add up to the whole picture at the end. But when you finally think you got the whole picture with all its little details, it ends up differently again. This ending is in a way predictable but in the same way it is surprising and amusing. I am not going to give it away because I think everybody should find out themselves and I do not want to ruin it for anyone.
What I love about Nicholas Sparks stories is that you never know in advance if there will be a happy ending or not! With other love stories, you alway...moreWhat I love about Nicholas Sparks stories is that you never know in advance if there will be a happy ending or not! With other love stories, you always expect a happy ending but as Nicholas Sparks has proven several times, stories can also end with a sad ending... If this one has a happy or a sad ending, I'll let you find out for yourself!!!(less)
I bought this book a few months ago but did not start reading it right away. I just put it in my book shelve and it stayed there for quite a time. But...moreI bought this book a few months ago but did not start reading it right away. I just put it in my book shelve and it stayed there for quite a time. But why did I pick up this book just now? That is easy to explain: Recently, Notting Hill and especially the movie Notting Hill became something really special in my life. I do not want to give any details about it because this is not a blog about me and my private life but it is about the books I am reading. It just has a special meaning to me and that was why I suddenly wanted to read this book. It is chick lit and many people might not like it but I do. It is easy to read, romantic and funny. Once in a while I just need something like that.
So I started reading this book which talks a lot about movies, especially chick flicks which I love for the same reasons given above, and of course, it takes part in Notting Hill, my most favourite area in London. In the beginning, I did not really get into the story. The first chapters were a bit boring story wise. What kept me reading were the descriptions of Notting Hill and all the movies mentioned. Scarlett, the main character, wants to proof that life can be just as it is in movies and who does not want to live like in a movie? Who does not dream of a perfect and romantic happy ending in real life just as you can usually find it in chick flicks?
After a while I really got into the story and it became really interesting to see Scarlett and the developments between her and the two men in her life while she is just proofing that real life can be like a movie. The story has everything: Love, some family drama, traveling, London, Notting Hill and of course, movies. That is why I really liked it after the first chapters. And it stays compelling until the very end. You totally start feeling with Scarlett trying to figure out who is her man in the end. Does she want the organised, stable but also a bit boring David who she is supposed to marry or will she decide for the exciting, charming and funny Sean, her neighbour in Notting Hill who might end up being just a romance in the end and might not make her happy in the long run?
I am not going to tell you who she is going to choose or if she chooses one at all in the end but what I am going to tell you is that the ending of this book is as dramatic as it could be and just reminded me of all chick flick movies that I have seen so far. The ending is one that you definitely would expect from a book about movies…
I can highly recommend this book to you if you like chick lit novels and chick flick movies. If you want something funny and romantic, this is totally the book you should read. It is crazy once in a while but it never gets boring.
I bought this book for my holiday in Italy. I was going to do a road trip through Tuscany and then spend 4 days in Rome at the end of my trip. I read...moreI bought this book for my holiday in Italy. I was going to do a road trip through Tuscany and then spend 4 days in Rome at the end of my trip. I read another book by Gemma Townley before and really liked Little White Lies. Thus, I thought that this book would be the perfect travel companion. The book‘s format was also perfect for traveling because it is really small and light and the text on the back sounded promising.
When I read the title When in Rome - A novel of piazzas and passion I was sure that this book would mainly take place in Rome and would be talking a lot about places in Rome. But after I finished the first 100 pages, the main characters were still in London and not even close to Rome. Of course, a little part of the story then took place in Rome but only for a really short time until the happenings of the story ended up back in London. The story itself also has nothing to do with Rome or Italy for that matter. The main characters could have easily traveled to a different city without changing much of the story. I was really disappointed because I was expecting to get into an italian mood but nothing like that happened. In my opinion, the title for this book has been chosen completely wrong because it promises something that the book is not able to deliver in the end.
Not taking this into consideration and only focusing on the story itself, it is an ok story. Nothing special and nothing totally compelling. It has some funny bits and bobs but many times I really had to force myself to go on reading. It can be considered as a light read for the holidays if you do not want to concentrate on a heavy and complex story. It is something you can read on the beach and get distracted once in a while. Many people might like that but I usually expect something more meaningful and a deeper background when I am reading a book. I need to be forced to concentrate because only then I can truly enjoy a story. If I would not have been in Italy with no possibility to read another book, I would probably not have finished it. The whole time I was waiting for something that would make this story different, unique or just something that would give me a reason to go on reading. I think this story really could have been better.
It is not the worst story I ever read and this book might be the right one for many other people who are just searching for something different in a book then I do but for me it was not really the right read. Also, no matter if the story is good or bad, the title is surely wrong and should not be focused on Rome since that is not reflected in the story of the book.
I am not going to give up on Gemma Townley just because of this since I really liked Little White Lies but I can certainly not recommend this book - especially not for an Italian holiday or if you just want to try out a new author. I hope that her other books will make up for this...
This was actually the first book I‘ve ever read written by Gemma Townley. I did not even know about her existence before I stumbled over a blog post b...moreThis was actually the first book I‘ve ever read written by Gemma Townley. I did not even know about her existence before I stumbled over a blog post by A Woman Reading who wrote about her. Gemma Townley is the sister of Sophie Kinsella and also writes Chick Lit. Since I love Sophie Kinsella books I definitely wanted to try out a book written by her sister. I chose Little White Lies because it is about a girl moving from a smaller city to London and tries to find her way through life. I liked the idea because I also just moved to London.
When you first move to London, you have all these great expectations about how life in this metropolis would be like. You feel sophisticated and cosmopolitan. But as it turns out, even people living in London are just normal people like you and me. Living in the city is different from living in the country but both have their positive and negative sides.
This is basically what happens to Natalie, the main character of the book. She moves to London and expects a fabulous life. She quit her job in advertising in her home town but the only job she can find in London is a working in a cloth store being bullied by her boss all the time. In the beginning she is not even going out. She spends her evenings alone in her tiny Notting Hill apartment dreaming of a better life. She told all her friends and family back home how great life in London is going to be and now they start asking about it. Feeling too proud to tell the truth, Natalie makes up stories about her great new job and her fantastic social and party life. While telling all these lies she forgets about the possibility that the people from home might come to London to be a part of this gorgeous new life she supposedly has. This leads to Natalie making up new lies trying to support her old ones. And it gets even worse when she falls in love with Simon while pretending to be someone else.
But as the saying goes, lies don‘t travel far: First there is just one lie, then another one based on the first one and in the end it is a whole bunch of lies and a complete new story arises. It can become pretty hard to keep up with all the lies that are being told. Natalie has to remember all of them and everything new she tells has to fit into the whole imagined story.
Even though I could not really understand why she was lying in several situations when it was so obvious to the reader that telling the truth would have been the less painful choice, I could still feel with her and it really made me laugh how she always found her way out of one lie through creating an even more absurd story…
Throughout the whole book I was asking myself how Natalie would ever get out of the story she created. I do not want to give away the details for people who are interested in reading the book but I can say that I liked her way of dealing with things. What can be learned from this story is “that you have to make things happen, not wait for them to happen to you.”
For this novel, Gemma Townley seemed to be inspired by the movie “Notting Hill” even though it is a complete different story. I could sense some similarities like the scene in the end when Natalie talks to Simon in his classroom in front of all his pupils as if she was one of them. This reminded me of the last scene in Notting Hill in which William Thacker pretends to be a journalists asking questions to movie star Anna Scott. The movie is one of my most favourite movies. I‘ve seen it so many times and it was nice being reminded of it by this great book. In the end I felt like going to Notting Hill and enjoying the little streets with the nice little houses and the cute little shops, maybe stopping by in the Travel Bookstore and at Tina T‘s…
I really enjoyed reading Little White Lies and I don‘t quite understand why Gemma Townley isn‘t more popular. In my opinion she can definitely compete with her sister! I am going to read more of her books for sure…
Only 3 more days to go until the next book of the famous Shopaholic books by Sophie Kinsella will be released. Due to this event, I’d like to review t...moreOnly 3 more days to go until the next book of the famous Shopaholic books by Sophie Kinsella will be released. Due to this event, I’d like to review the rest of the series that I’ve already read.
The whole series is about Becky Bloomwood, becoming Brandon within the series. Becky is addicted to shopping and does that all the time. Because of her shopping addiction she always ends up in peculiar situations. She constantly has problems with her bank and even if she tells herself that she does not want to go shopping anymore, she still can’t stop and always finds new and creative excuses why she really needs a certain pair of shoes, an expensive bag or other random things available in shops.
The series consists of 5 books (6 from 2 September on):
- Confessions of a Shopaholic (UK title: The Secret Dreamworld of a Shopaholic) - Shopaholic takes Manhattan (UK title: Shopaholic abroad) - Shopaholic ties the knot - Shopaholic and sister - Shopaholic and baby - Coming soon: Mini Shopaholic
Of course one can argue in the first place that all the books are kind of the same because they are all about Becky going shopping but that is not how it is. After reading the first one, I couldn’t wait to read the others as well! The reason why these books are so great and why they are so popular is that you can always feel with Becky. We all have been in similar situations once in a while. Or which girl has never bought a pair of shoes arguing herself into them and finding excuses why this pair is so special and definitely necessary even though her wardrobe is full of shoes?
The novels are written in a really charming way and always make me laugh. You can easily put yourself into her situation and even, if she is a bit crazier than most women are, there is always something that you have experienced as well. It is also funny to see in what situations Becky always ends up because of imprudent behaviour and the most interesting and loveliest part is usually the way she tries to get out of these situations…
Another reason why I love the books is that they are really easy to read. You do not have to concentrate because the plot is pretty straight forward but still not at all boring. They always put a smile on my face no matter in which mood I am. I know for sure that Becky is cheering me up! Once I’ve started one of the books I can hardly put it down until I finished which is always sad because then I have to wait so long for a new one and I always hope that she is writing a new one quickly…
If you haven’t read the Shopaholic books so far, I can highly recommend to do it because if you like Chick Lit, there is basically nothing better around there.(less)
I was waiting for this book to be released for so long! I pre-ordered it months ago and when it finally arrived, I could not stop myself. I directly h...moreI was waiting for this book to be released for so long! I pre-ordered it months ago and when it finally arrived, I could not stop myself. I directly had to start reading. After having read 5 other Shopaholic books I was expecting something really funny and entertaining. And I have to say, I am not at all disappointed. I would not say it is the best book of the series but it was a great laugh and I’m a bit sad that I am done with it now and have to wait a really long time until there’ll be another Sophie Kinsella book.
Starting to read a Shopaholic book is great because you do not have to get to know the characters anymore. You feel like as if you really know them and thus, everything is familiar directly from the beginning. Mini Shopaholic includes a few new characters but all the old ones are still there and it is nice to meet them all again.
What I really love about the Shopaholic books is that they are, in a way, really close to everyone’s reality. Of course, Sophie Kinsella is exaggerating a lot but the main issues Becky Brandon has are normal ones that can happen to everyone. I can totally feel with her when she is facing all the problems to keep her surprise party a secret. I love preparing surprises but I always have a huge problem keeping my surprise a secret. I was feeling with her all that time and hoped that it’ll work out in the end!
The other main topic of the book is Minnie, Becky’s 2 year old daughter. Minnie is absolutely spoiled and you can imagine why she is like that! It is great to see the traits Becky and Minnie have in common especially when it comes to shopping. Of course, Minnie turns out to become a shopaholic, just like her mother. But the best thing about it is the way, Becky is using Minnie as an excuse to buy new things. Buying a dress for Minnie’s 21. birthday and borrow it from her now is just one example of these great excuses.
My most favourite quote of the book is: “‘It is an investment’, I’ll wear it so many times, it’ll totally pay for itself.” That is just how we know Becky and, lets face it, women are like that and we all try to find excuses like this one to buy a new pair of shoes or new cloths.
The book ends in a way that gives reasons to hope that there’ll be another one and I really hope that this hope comes true. What would our world be without Becky Brandon?
“I think that most people go into bookshops and have no idea what they want to buy. Somehow, the books sit there, almost magically willing people to p...more“I think that most people go into bookshops and have no idea what they want to buy. Somehow, the books sit there, almost magically willing people to pick them up. The right person for the right book. It’s as though they already know whose life they need to be a part of, how they can make a difference, how they can teach a lesson, put a smile on a face at just the right time.”
When I started reading The Book of Tomorrow by Cecelia Ahern, I did not expect what I found. I was not expecting this great story. Having read some of her other novels already, I was expecting something completely different like a love story. Of course, the story includes a love story but it is not the major part of the story.
The story is about a girl, Tamara, who moves to the countryside with her mum to live with her relatives after her Dad killed himself. Her new home is completely different from her old one and she starts exploring her surroundings. Thus, she gets to know several different people who all live in the area and first seem not having anything to do with each other. One day she finds a diary in a traveling library. In an attempt to start writing the diary she figures out that the diary is writing itself and is letting her look into the future. It always tells her what is going to happen the next day. Thus, she is trying to change the future. Changing little details of what the diary told her, she finds out “how one thing affects another”.
“All families have their secrets, most people would never know them, but they know there are spaces, there are gaps where the answers should be, where someone should have sat, where someone used to be.”
Exploring her surroundings more deeply, Tamara finds out more about the people living around her and more importantly, she finds out more about herself and her past than she would ever have expected.
This original and unique story is like a modern fairy tale. It is mysterious and exciting and you definitely can’t stop reading until you found out all mysteries surrounding the different characters of the story. Normally, I don’t enjoy reading supernatural stories but this one is just a bit supernatural and appears completely realistic as it could happen to anybody. (less)