Rebecca Bloomwood just hit rock bottom. But she's never looked better.... Becky Bloomwood has a fabulous flat in London's trendiest neighborhood, a troupe of glamorous socialite friends, and a closet brimming with the season's must-haves. The only trouble is that she can't actually afford it—not any of it. Her job writing at Successful Savings not only bores her to tears, it doesn't pay much at all. And lately Becky's been chased by dismal letters from Visa and the Endwich Bank—letters with large red sums she can't bear to read—and they're getting ever harder to ignore. She tries cutting back; she even tries making more money. But none of her efforts succeeds. Becky's only consolation is to buy herself something ... just a little something.... Finally a story arises that Becky actually cares about, and her front-page article catalyzes a chain of events that will transform her life—and the lives of those around her—forever.
I absolutely loved Confessions of a Shopaholic, as I expected I would. Becky is one of the most beloved and iconic characters in chick lit (the other is Bridget Jones), and the first installment in the Shopaholic series shows why. I really don't know how anyone could not love Becky. Kinsella created a character that has plenty of flaws but readers still root for her and want to be her best friend.
Becky is the most endearing character I've ever come across. I was a little worried that I would be picturing her as Isla Fisher, who played Becky in the movie, while reading, but the movie and the book are so completely different (Becky isn't even British in the movie!) that I was able to separate book Becky from movie Becky in my mind. I'm going to devote a separate post to the movie, so I won't go into it too much here, but I love book Becky and movie Becky equally. I think that's a testament to Kinsella's ability to create such a truly special character. Even when adapted for a movie and changed, at the core, movie Becky is still Kinsella's Becky and undoubtedly adorable.
Aside from gushing, I don't have much else to say about Confessions. No negatives here. If you want to write chick lit, study Confessions. This is how it's done. Confessions is chick lit at its absolute best.
Oh, and I also want to mention that I love how this book isn't consumed with the potential romance between Becky and Luke. Becky isn't obsessed with him or constantly chasing him. She isn't even sure she likes him for a good portion of the book. I like that Kinsella focused on portraying Becky as a strong, well-rounded character in this first book as the foundation for the rest of the series without solely resorting to a frustrating will-they-won't-they love story. Becky can carry a novel on her own. I love Luke too, but I was happy to see their romance unfold naturally while Becky figures out her own life.