When I started reading Sophie Kinsella’s latest, My Not So Perfect Life, I took a second to look through the list of Kinsella’s other books.
I have read every. Single. One. So I guess you could say that Kinsella is one of my favourite authors.
But even though she’s a favourite, I wouldn’t say that I had unnaturally high expectations for this book. I’ve read all of her work, but I haven’t loved it unconditionally across the board. There were some misses in the middle of the Shopaholic series, Wedding Night was pretty terrible actually and I remember being underwhelmed by The Undomestic Goddess.
So when I tell you that I loved My Not So Perfect Life, know that I mean it and it’s totally worth your time!
Cat Brenner is trying to make a go of her London life. Ever since she can remember, it’s been her dream to live and work in London, despite the fact that it’s kind of breaking her Somerset farmer dad’s heart. So even though she has no money, lives in a terrible flat with heinous roommates, and has a shaky hold on a job at a branding agency that comes with a vile commute, she would never admit that her life isn’t going exactly how she planned. She can’t even remember to answer to her chic new name and constantly introduces herself as Katie.
But then, Katie gets fired and she can’t find another job. She finds herself back home at the family farm, to the delight of her father and stepmother. And they actually have a great idea – to turn the farm into a glamping vacation destination. Katie decides to help get them up and running while she keeps up the search – and doesn’t tell them that she lost her job. She’s on a sabbatical!
When her former boss, Demeter, shows up with her family and starts to divulge personal information to Katie, her perspective on everything changes.
If you’re familiar with Kinsella’s work, you should be able to see that it has classic Kinsella elements. There’s also a tall, dark and handsome successful man for Katie to maybe get involved in. But right now, the fact that this book is classic Kinsella, is exactly what I needed. I needed to laugh about crazy roommates, misunderstandings and hi jinx, even some physical comedy.
And in the end, Kinsella rewarded me with a different kind of love story. One where our plucky heroine comes to admire a strong, clever, ambitious woman and finds some of those same elements in herself. A book where the goal is to get a career on track, to fall in love with the work that she’s doing, and to constantly learn from the other brilliant women she works with.
After reading about orphans, backstabbing queens, difficult women and sexual assault, My Not So Perfect Life was just what the bibliotherapist ordered.
(What? That’s a real thing)