My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella – a Review
Katie Brenner has the perfect life: a flat in London, a glamorous job, and a super-cool Instagram feed.
Ok, so the real truth is that she rents a tiny room with no space for a wardrobe, has a hideous commute to a lowly admin job, and the life she shares on Instagram isn’t really hers.
But one day her dreams are bound to come true, aren’t they?
Until her not-so perfect life comes crashing down when her mega-successful boss Demeter gives her the sack. All Katie’s hopes are shattered. She has to move home to Somerset, where she helps her dad with his new glamping business.
Then Demeter and her family book in for a holiday, and Katie sees her chance. But should she get revenge on the woman who ruined her dreams? Or try to get her job back? Does Demeter – the woman with everything – have such an idyllic life herself? Maybe they have more in common than it seems.
And what’s wrong with not-so-perfect, anyway?
My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella is a standalone novel. Katie Brenner, our heroine, has just started a new dream job in London. Katie grew up in a small town, where her father has a farm. She is determined to make a successful life in London, which she has always dreamed would be her perfect life; which at this point is not so perfect. Katie, who uses the name Cat, hates her daily train commute to work, since she can’t afford the rent in London.
She is the new girl on the job at a marketing firm, where she finds herself totally in awe of her boss, and naïve as to the politics of the workers and management. Her co-workers befriend Cat, and constantly complain about the boss, Demeter, who is somewhat of a bitch. However, Cat sees in Demeter everything she wants for her future; successful high paying job, designer clothes, celebrity acquaintances, lives in a mansion, and has a happy family life. Cat feels if she works hard, she can attain the same life. But nothing is always as it seems.
Just when she gets to impress Demeter with some of her ideas, and meets hot Alex, one of the owners of the firm, Cat is shocked when she is fired. When she is unsuccessful in finding another job, Katie (back to her real name) is forced to go home; secretly telling her father that she is on sabbatical in order to help him with starting his new Glamping business on the farm. Katie uses her wonderful marketing savvy to do a great job in setting up a website to promote the new business, utilizing an Instagram site for pictures, and other unique ideas. After a short time, Katie is shocked to see Demeter arrive on their farm for a family vacation. Katie is still angry at Demeter, and goes out of her way to disguise herself somewhat and make life a little crazy for her ex-boss. In a short period, Katie will see Demeter in another light, which turns out to be a not so perfect life. Once Katie learns more about Demeter, the book does take a turn, which for me I enjoyed much more. I found the first half of the book a bit slow, and especially a little ditzy when she was doing those crazy antics to Demeter; but I really loved the last third of the book.
What follows is a nice story about learning that what you see in front of you is not always reality. Katie begins to see how Demeter, living the perfect life, has many of her own problems; her marriage is suffering; she works long hours in a demanding and competitive job; she doesn’t spend much time with her children, who are somewhat distant with her. Slowly, when Demeter finally recognizes and remembers Katie, things change with their relationship. Katie privately gets Demeter’s kids to understand their mom better, and to be nicer. Demeter learns more from Katie about how the office staff hates her, and wants to make amends. However, soon Alex arrives on the farm and Demeter knows he is here to fire her, since everything on the job was crumbling around her. It will take Demeter and Katie to join hands to discover the truth about what was happening behind the scenes.
I really liked Alex, who was considered a womanizer, and whom Katie finds herself falling for, but she thought that he was having an affair with Demeter, which turned out to be another untrue fact. When Alex shows up at the farm, their relationship begins to turn into a very nice romance. There were some very good characters that Kinsella has created besides Katie, Demeter, & Alex. Especially, Katie’ s Dad and Stepmom, Biddy were a lot of fun, and Demeter’s two kids.
As I have noted before, the last third of the book was great, with Katie rising up to help save Demeter, and her nice romance with Alex. Katie herself used the time on the farm to prove that she was very talented in marketing and working with customers. Her not so perfect life was a fun motto on her Instagram page, which added to the fun at the end. This was a good and humorous story that I feel you should be reading.
Reviewed by Barb
Copy provided by Publisher