Thoughts of a chick lit blogger on Confessions of a Shopaholic

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Hi. My name is Adele. And I am addicted to shopping.

I buy clothes that don’t really fit me that well but they’re on sale so it’s okay. I buy clothes that looked really good on the hanger but don’t look so hot when I try it on at home. I have too many pairs of jeans and not enough t-shirts. I am not a sunglasses person… yet I have three pairs of sunglasses. I can understand the morning feeling of looking into a closet of clothes abundant enough to clothe the Russian army and thinking “I have nothing to wear today.”

So I could somewhat relate to Rebecca Bloomwood, heroine of Sophie Kinsella’s New York Times bestseller “Confessions of a Shopaholic.” Here’s the basic story. Bloomwood is stuck between a rock in a hard place: she loves to shop, but can’t afford it. She’s up to her eyeballs in debt. And yet she continues to be drawn in to the expensive stores, max out all of her credit cards, and lie, lie, lie about it.

Kinsella masterfully maps out Bloomwood’s journey deeper into debt, recording every nervous tic and thought that Bloomwood has and hides away quickly. I found myself growing angry at Bloomwood for running away from her problems, but how often do we do that every day? If we procrasinate homework, aren’t we just running from our problems instead of facing it? If we have just had an awkward breakup, don’t we avoid that person like the plague, instead of facing them head-on? It’s so ridiculously easy to judge Rebecca Bloomwood, to think “She’s just a lazy cow who needs to get her act together.” But this book reveals the totally common human trait of lack of self-control, and also reveals the horrifying idea of addiction. When we are so obsessed with something that we might not even realize it until it’s too late.

The feel-good element of this book was the flicker of hope in Bloomwood. Even in her darkest moments of debt, she won’t back out out on her morals. Sure, she’s a fictional character, but that’s the moment when I really started to be on her side. Even when the entire world is against her, Bloomwood’s perseverance shows that anyone can turn their life around if they just tap into what they’re good at. And everyone’s good at something. Even if it’s underwater basket weaving or something useless like that. At least it would make a really cool YouTube video.

Oh ya. And there’s a hot guy named Luke Brandon. Duh. Played by Hugh Dancy in the movie version of the book, so obviously I was a fan of him even when he was really mean in the novel. I mean, come on now. He has a British accent. He’s got to be a good guy.

READ THIS IF YOU: Really like to shop. Or are in a lot of debt. But if you’re reading this, I assume you’re in high school. And if you’re in debt already… good luck to you.

HUMOR RATING: From 1 to 10, I’d give this a 5. Meg Cabot definitely writes funnier stuff, but this book was somewhat bearable. Got pretty slow at times.

ROMANCE RATING: 8. Swooooning over Rebecca Bloomwood + Luke Brandon occasionally. Scant amount of cheesiness, which was good.

READABILITY: 7. The only thing that kept me going midway through this book was the fact that I had nothing to make me get up early this Saturday morning. So it’s good enough to read all at once… barely.

MOVIE TO BOOK RATIO: Basic plotline the same. Subplots very different. Characters essentially the same. Much is cut out of the book, a lot of extra events are added to the movie. I enjoyed both, but I had higher expectations for both than what I got.

(They are so so so so so cute. <3)

Thanks to my friend Stella for recommending this book, along with many others that I’ll hope to post soon. If you have any suggestions, be sure to leave a comment!

Toodloo, (Toodle-oo? Too-d-loo? Good lord)