My Not So Perfect Life
By Sophie Kinsella
Author’s Website: http://www.sophiekinsella.co.uk/
Brought to you by OBS reviewer Andra
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?
In true Kinsella fashion My Not So Perfect Life is a delightful read. Katie Brenner (aka ‘Cat’) is a rural born gal (from Somerset – Anster Farms to be exact) trying to make it big in London. Katie has landed a job with Cooper Clemmow, a branding and strategy agency. She is in fact trying to re-brand herself as ‘Cat’ – a sophisticated version of herself with a new London name.
I loved Katie’s description of her commute (including the panini incident, which brought out a hearty chuckle):
“Commuting in London is basically warfare. It’s a constant campaign of claiming territory; inching forward; never relaxing for a moment. Because if you do, someone will step past you. Or step on you.”
“We’re so tightly wedged that she’s holding her panini about three inches away from my face……. Aargh! I shriek as the train jolts and I’m thrown violently forward. The girl has been thrown too, and her hand shoots up toward my face and before I know it, my open mouth has landed on the end of her panini.”
“Living in London is something that people all over the world would love to do, and now I’m here. And that’s why I don’t care if my commute is the journey from hell and I don’t care if my bedroom is about three-foot square. I’m here.”
Okay…enough about the commute 😊. I found in the beginning that Cat was not very multi dimensional but really just superficial. However, my opinion changed for the better when her circumstances changed. Working with the most perfect boss and the boss from he**, Demeter, has been a great learning experience for Cat. Demeter knows her stuff and Cat is sopping up the knowledge as fast as possible, but really, why can’t Demeter remember her name? Especially when she sacks Cat?
So what’s a girl to do when the proverbial shi* hits the fan? Goes home to re-group. Back in Somerset, Katie does not tell her family anything. Her father is a hoot. Always trying new money making schemes…that do not work. His latest idea is to set up a camp ground on the farmland. With the expert help of Katie for branding the idea, their ‘glamping’ (glamorous camping) business becomes a big hit. Finally, it looks like one of dad’s money making ideas might work? That is to be seen.
The part that really was entertaining was when Demeter books a week at the farm for glamping with her family. Then Katie must come face to face with the woman who fired her without letting her dad and step mother know. All I can say is…. hilarious with a side of mud (you will understand once you read the book). Revenge was never so sweet, until Katie makes the effort to actually get to know Demeter a bit better and vice versa.
The romantic love story was very well played, a bit understated so as to not take away from Katie’s “life” struggles. A bit of a surprise was the subterfuge that occurred in the office. I like how it just snuck up on me – catching me off guard.
All in all, a fun, charming read. A bit of romance, self discovery, office politics and some general silliness. As usual, Sophie Kinsella does not disappoint with an entertaining story.