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Shopaholic to the Stars

Book Review: Shopaholic to the Rescue by Sophie Kinsella

By Amazon, Books & Authors, ReviewsNo Comments
shopaholic-to-the-rescue-kinsella-book-cover Shopaholic to the Stars, which I have reviewed here ended on a cliff hanger. So I couldn’t wait to read Shopaholic to the Rescue by the fabulous Sophie Kinsella. And Kinsella didn’t disappoint.

In Shopaholic to the Rescue, Becky is on the hunt for her father, Tarkie (Suze’s husband) who have gone missing with a dodgy character called Bruce. In the RV is Becky, Luke, Minnie, Becky’s mother, Janice (Becky’s mother’s best friend), Suze (Becky’s best friend) and Alicia Bitch Long-legs. There’s a growing gap between Becky and Suze, one that Alicia is taking advantage of to become Suze’s new best friend. Danny joins the crew to.

Can Becky solve the mystery of her father’s sudden disappearance? Can she find her father and help him to put right an injustice? Can she find Tarkie and build a bridge across the gap to Suze? Can she find out what Alicia Bitch Long-Legs is up to? In short: can Becky put everything right?

Shopaholic to the Rescue pinnacle of the Shopaholic Series, but also of Kinsella’s ability to write comedy. There is literally a laugh on every page of this addictive page turner. As with every other book in the Shopaholic series, in between chapters are littered with entertaining letters, emails or texts of response mostly from Derek Smeath (her former Bank Manager).

All of the characters grow and develop, but what was most outstanding is that Becky’s character also grew. Becky has so many internal struggles going on and guilt in Shopaholic to the Rescue, that she looses her mojo, and even, dare I say it? Finds no pleasure in shopping and has no desire to shop. The plot is enjoyably predictable with an ingenious ending. The pacing is perfect.

Overall Shopaholic to the Rescue is a superb addition to the Shopaholic Series. A thoroughly entertaining and captivating read. A must read for fans of the Shopaholic series.

Review soon,



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Book Review: Shopaholic to the Stars by Sophie Kinsella

By Amazon, Books & Authors, ReviewsNo Comments
shopaholic-to-the-stars-sophie-kinsella Becky’s back in Shopaholic to the Stars! It’s great to have her back.

Becky, Luke and Minnie are moving to Hollywood. Luke will be helping to manage PR for his new celebrity client Sage Seymour.

Meanwhile Becky plans to make a name for herself by becoming a renowned Hollywood Stylist. Becky is even joined by best friend Suze, Tarquin and their brood. Oh and Becky’s dad who is in search of an old friend. What could possibly go wrong?

Well it starts with Becky seeing Lois Kellerton, Sage Seymour’s nemesis shoplifting. Lois swears Becky to secrecy, but Becky lets slip to Sage. Before Becky knows it, she’s at the centre of a press tornado as the only witness of Lois’ crime. Against Luke’s advice, she decides to make the most of the publicity while she’s ‘hot’ to try and promote herself as a Hollywood Stylist.

Every page of Shopaholic to the Stars made me laugh, often aloud and made me feel elated. Becky’s character is so optimistic and naive that she makes every book in the Shopaholic series a joy to read. Shopaholic to the Stars is no exception.

About halfway through Shopaholic to the Stars Kinsella adds another plot line (the one were Becky’s dad disappears) and it’s clear that this book is the first part in a two book story. Fabulous, it means another book in the Shopaholic Series. This new (and as of yet untitled) release will probably be published next year.

Take Shopaholic to the Stars as a lighthearted, comedic, chick-lit read and you’ll enjoy it. The plot of Shopaholic to the Stars is slightly predictable and if you overanalysed it you’d find the odd flaw in the storyline.

The Shopaholic Series in chronological order: The Secret Dreamworld Of A Shopaholic, Shopaholic Abroad, Shopaholic Ties The Knot, Shopaholic & Sister, Shopaholic & Baby, Mini Shopaholic and Shopaholic to the Stars.

Shopaholic to the Stars by Sophie Kinsella is available to buy on Amazon.

Review soon,


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Books I’m Excited About!

By Amazon, Books & AuthorsNo Comments

Title: The Hunted
By: Charlie Higson
Release Date: Thursday 4th September 2014


The Hunted is Charlie Higson’s sixth terrifying installment in the thrilling The Enemy series

The sickness struck everyone over fourteen.

First it twisted their minds.

Next it ravaged their bodies.

Now they roam the streets –

Crazed and hungry

The others had promised that the countryside would be safer than the city. They were wrong. Now Ella’s all-alone except for her silent rescuer, Scarface – and she’s not even sure if he’s a kid or a grown-up.

Back in London, Ed’s determined to find her. But getting out of town’s never been more dangerous- because coming in the other direction is every SICKO in the country. It’s like they’re being called towards the capital and nothing is going to stop them . . .

In the penultimate book in The Enemy series, the survivors’ stories cross with chilling consequences.

(From: Amazon, Last Accessed: Thursday 21st August 2014.)

Title: The Establishment – And How They Get Away with It
By: Owen Jones
Release Date: Thursday 4th September 2014


In The Establishment Owen Jones, author of the international bestseller Chavs, offers a biting critique of the British Establishment and a passionate plea for democracy

Behind our democracy lurks a powerful but unaccountable network of people who wield massive power and reap huge profits in the process. In exposing this shadowy and complex system that dominates our lives, Owen Jones sets out on a journey into the heart of our Establishment, from the lobbies of Westminster to the newsrooms, boardrooms and trading rooms of Fleet Street and the City. Exposing the revolving doors that link these worlds, and the vested interests that bind them together, Jones shows how, in claiming to work on our behalf, the people at the top are doing precisely the opposite. In fact, they represent the biggest threat to our democracy today – and it is time they were challenged.

[Praise for Owen Jones’s Chavs] ‘A passionate and well-documented denunciation of the upper-class contempt for the proles that has recently become so visible in the British class system’ – Eric Hobsbawm, Guardian Books of 2011

‘As with all the best polemics, a luminous anger backlights his prose’ – Economist

‘A bold attempt to rewind political orthodoxies; to reintroduce class as a political variable … It moves in and out of postwar British history with great agility, weaving together complex questions of class, culture and identity with a lightness of touch. Jones torches the political class to great effect’ – Jon Cruddas, Independent

Owen Jones was born in Sheffield, grew up in Stockport, and studied history at Oxford. His first book, the international bestseller Chavs: The Demonization of the Working Class, was long-listed for the Guardian First Book Award and chosen as one of The New York Times top 10 non-fiction books of 2011. In 2013 he received the Young Writer of the Year prize at the Political Book Award. He is a columnist for the Guardian and a frequent broadcaster.

(From: Amazon, Last Accessed: Thursday 21st August 2014.)

Title: Shopaholic to the Stars
By: Sophie Kinsella
Release Date: Thursday 25th September 2014.


Becky Brandon (nee Bloomwood) is in Hollywood! It’s as if all her life has been leading to this moment. She’s hanging out with the stars . or at least she will be, when she finally gets to meet movie superstar Sage Seymour, whom husband Luke is now managing.

There’s so much to see and do! And getting Minnie through the hurdles for her A-list Hollywood pre-school will require

Becky sets her heart on a new career – she’s going to be a celebrity stylist. Red carpet, here she comes! But Becky soon finds it’s tough in Tinseltown. Luckily her best friend Suze comes over to keep her company, and together they embark on the Hollywood insider trail. But somehow…things aren’t quite working out as they’d hoped.

Then Becky’s big chance comes, and it’s an opportunity that money can’t buy. But will it cost her too much?

(From: Amazon, Last Accessed: Thursday 21st August 2014.)

Title: Us
By: David Nicholls
Release Date: Tuesday 30th September 2014.


David Nicholls brings to bear all the wit and intelligence that graced ONE DAY in this brilliant, bittersweet novel about love and family, husbands and wives, parents and children. Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2014.

‘I was looking forward to us growing old together. Me and you, growing old and dying together.’

‘Douglas, who in their right mind would look forward to that?’

Douglas Petersen understands his wife’s need to ‘rediscover herself’ now that their son is leaving home.

He just thought they’d be doing their rediscovering together.

So when Connie announces that she will be leaving, too, he resolves to make their last family holiday into the trip of a lifetime: one that will draw the three of them closer, and win the respect of his son. One that will make Connie fall in love with him all over again.

The hotels are booked, the tickets bought, the itinerary planned and printed.

What could possibly go wrong?

(From: Amazon, Last Accessed: Thursday 21st August 2014.)

Title: The Year I Met You
By: Cecelia Ahern
Release Date: Thursday 9th October 2014.


A thoughtful, captivating and ultimately uplifting novel from this uniquely talented author

Jasmine loves two things: her sister and her work. And when her work is taken away she has no idea who she is.

Matt loves two things: his family and the booze. Without them, he hits rock bottom.

One New Year’s Eve, two people’s paths collide. Both have time on their hands; both are at a crossroads. But as the year unfolds, through moonlit nights and suburban days, an unlikely friendship slowly starts to blossom.

Sometimes you have to stop still in order to move on…

Original and poignant, The Year I Met You will make you laugh, cry and celebrate life.
(From: Amazon, Last Accessed: Thursday 21st August 2014.)

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21 Writers I Admire

By Amazon, Books & Authors, Gay, ThinkingNo Comments

As an avid Reader I have a list of writers I admire. The list is below and is split into genres. The writers are listed in alphabetical order by their surname’s, so the order doesn’t indicate the preference. Along with each Writers name (and link to their official website) is a bit of blurb as to why I admire them.

General Fiction

ps-i-love-you-book-cover 1. Cecelia Ahern – Her first novel P.S. I Love You shot to the top of the best seller charts and was later turned into a film. I admire Cecelia Ahern because the subject of all of her books is: the strength of the human spirit. Her books are also superbly written.

Related Reviews: Book Review: The Gift by Cecelia Ahern, Book Review: The Book of Tomorrow by Cecelia Ahern, Book Review: The Time of my Life by Cecelia Ahern, Book Review: One Hundred Names by Cecelia Ahern and Book Review: How to Fall in Love by Cecelia Ahern.

2. Emma DonoghueRoom first novel of Emma Donoghue’s that I came across. I admire the concept of Room, along with the stylistic telling of the story. I must admit that I didn’t know that Emma Donoghue has written so many books or done the variety of writing that she has in her career. I may well pick up one of her many published books in the future. Related Review: Book Review: Room by Emma Donoghue.

shopaholic-series-book-covers 3. Sophie Kinsella – She is most well known for her Shopaholic series. The idea really was just ahead of it’s time in terms of predicting the credit crunch. I admire her because of her appeal to a wide audience, her light and easy-to-read style and because she previously wrote in her real name: Madeleine Wickham.

After writing as Madeleine Wickham she took a break from writing and came back with The Secret Dreamworld Of A Shopaholic written as Sophie Kinsella. She used this name to see if she could get her work published as a new Writer and because her work was different than that of Madeleine Wickham.

I’m looking forward to the release of Shopaholic to the Stars. Related Reviews: Book Review: Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella, Book Review: Mini Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella, Book Review: I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella and Book Review: Wedding Night by Sophie Kinsella.

4. Isla Morley – She makes this list for her second novel Above. I admire Morley for this novel for so many reasons: it’s well written, it’s a great idea, it’s perfectly paced, etc. It’s the only book I’ve ever described as phenomenal. Related Review: Book Review: Above by Isla Morley.

5. David Nicholls – David wrote One Day, a brilliant love story. I love a good love story so admire him for this story set over a lifetime. He has written Starter for Ten and The Understudy, both of which I want to read. He does some acting as well.

the magicians assistant 6. Ann Patchett – I discovered Ann Patchett through her novel The Magician’s Assistant, which I am currently re-reading. I admire this book’s brilliant opening line: “PARSIFAL IS DEAD. That is the end of the story.” Ann Patchett’s writers voice had me hooked from page one, till the very end. I admire her for writing this is a beautiful story and telling it expertly. Ann Patchett has since become a voice for independent book stores and authors which are other reasons for my admiration.

Ann Patchett’s other novels are The Patron Saint of Liars, Taft, Bel Canto, Run and State of Wonder. All of which I want to read. Related Review: Book Review: The Magician’s Assistant by Ann Patchett.

Fantasy Fiction

The-Magicians-Guild-Trudi-Canavan 7. Trudi Canavan – A friend introduced me to Trudi Canavan’s work and I’m so glad he did. I admire her intricate story telling and the sheer number of books and trilogies she has completed.

I’ve just finished reading Thief’s Magic by Trudi Canavan, so expect a review soon. Related Review: Book Review: The Magician’s Guild (Book 1) by Trudi Canavan.

8. Steven J Mepham – He is a good friend of mine, who is currently working on his first novel. His ideas, plots, characters and description are all exceptional. When his first novel is published it will be outstanding and I will be reviewing it here.

9. J. R. R. Tolkien – I discovered Tolkien when The Lord of the Rings films came out. I’m yet to read The Lord of the Rings trilogy, but I have read The Hobbit. I admire the longevity of his work. Related Review: Book Review: The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien (printed by The Folio Society).

Gay & Lesbian Fiction

In-His-Secret-Life-Mel-Bossa-Cover 10. Mel Bossa – I admire Mel Bossa for her writing style and tackling of tough subjects. She must be given praise as a woman for writing exceptional gay stories. I discovered Mel Bossa through her book: Franky Gets Real. She is one of my all-time favourite writers and now has a string of books to her name.

Related Reviews: Book Review: Into The Flames by Mel Bossa, Book Review: Franky Gets Real by Mel Bossa, Book Review: Split by Mel Bossa, Book Review: Suite Nineteen by Mel Bossa and Book Review: In His Secret Life by Mel Bossa.

11. Yvonne Heidt – Heidt writes lesbian literature. I admire her for her writer’s voice, style and the care readers come to feel for her characters. I’m currently reading her novel The Awakening. Related Review: Book Review: Sometime Yesterday by Yvonne Heidt.

12. Adrian Lilly – I admire Lilly for the amount of work that he produces. He has a number of projects on the go at any one time, yet always maintains the quality of his writing. He writes gay-themed literature that thrills, without resorting to erotica to thrill the reader. I’ve read two books in The Runes Trilogy, which is a story about gay werewolf’s. Related Reviews: Book Review: The Wolf At His Door (Runes Trilogy Book 1) by Adrian Lilly and Book Review: The Wolf in His Arms (Runes Trilogy Book 2) by Adrian Lilly.

Spirituality / Paganism

ly-de-angeles-witchcraft-book-cover 13. Ly De Angeles – I admire Ly De Angeles for her clear and concise sharing of knowledge in her book Witchcraft: Theory and Practice.

14. Ellen Dugan – Wrote Elements of Witchcraft: Natural Magick for Teens, which I read as a teenager and had a huge influence on my pagan practice. Her engaging writers voice and good use of language engages young people well. She showed me the path to working creatively with the elements.

cassandra-eason-psychic-development-book-cover 15. Cassandra Eason – The first book I ever read in spirituality/pagan genre was Cassandra Eason’s A Complete Guide To Psychic Development. It lit my imagination and interest, leading me to collect a library of books in the genre. A Complete Guide To Psychic Development is one of Cassandra Eason’s many titles. Two other titles that I have read and enjoyed are Cassandra’s Psychic Party Games and A Year and a Day in Magick: A Complete Week-by-week Course to a Lifetime in Magick.

16. Judy Hall – I admire Judy Hall for her comprehensive title The Crystal Bible, which to this day is still my reference for anything I want to know about crystals. Since she has gone on to write The Crystal Bible Volume 2 and The Crystal Bible Volume 3.

advanced-witchcraft-book-cover 17. Edain McCoy – She shows her passion for all things pagan with her engaging writing style. Edain McCoy has a number of titles published, but my favourite is Advanced Witchcraft: Go Deeper, Reach Further, Fly Higher. Many pagan books simply regurgitate the same basic information and offer nothing for someone who has been pagan for a number of years. In Advanced Witchcraft: Go Deeper, Reach Further, Fly Higher Edain McCoy showed that she knows what she’s talking about and offered me new ideas to develop my pagan practice.
utterley-wicked-dorothy-morrison 18. Dorothy Morrison – Shows her personality in her writing style. She’s a strong, independent woman with attitude and her books are enjoyable, full of ideas and engaging. I like that she covers the darker side of paganism and witchcraft, not just the lighter side like many pagan/spirituality authors. A good example of this is her title Utterly Wicked: Curses, Hexes & Other Unsavory Notions. The first book I bought on magic was her Everyday Magic title, which I have read from cover to cover repeatedly.

YA Fiction
19. Julianna Baggott – Is a poet who I discovered through her YA novels in The Pure Trilogy. The Pure Trilogy is hugely different from her previous work and I admire her for opening herself up to a new audience. Related Reviews: Book Review: Pure by Julianna Baggott, Book Review: Fuse by Julianna Baggott and Book Review: Burn by Julianna Baggott.

gone-michael-grant-book-cover 20. Michael Grant – Michael Grant’s Gone Series is brilliant. It’s fast paced and has kids stuck in a dome, some of whom have powers. The series has a great plot, realistic characters and each of the books is an addictive page turner. I admire Michael Grant for knowing how to thrill readers. Related Reviews: Book Review: Plague by Michael Grant, Book Review: Lies by Michael Grant, Book Review: Hunger by Michael Grant and Book Review: Gone by Michael Grant.
Charlie higson - The Enemy 21. Charlie Higson – He is a author, actor, comedian and writer for television and radio. I like everything about The Enemy Series. The concept, writing style, plot, pacing, settings, perspectives, characters and their development. I admire his ability to grip readers from the start to the end of each book and his history of creative diversity. Related Reviews: Book Review: The Fallen by Charlie Higson, Book Review: The Sacrifice by Charlie Higson, Book Review: The Fear by Charlie Higson, Book Review: The Dead by Charlie Higson and Book Review: The Enemy by Charlie Higson.

I admire all Writers for writing. Not only are they creating something, but they are taking an emotional risk by sharing their work with the world. To write, edit and publish a novel also a major time commitment for the Writer.

I’ve noticed a theme about the Writers in this list. That is that many of them do a number of different creative activities. It might be writing in different forms (e.g. poetry, for TV, radio or stage) or do something completely different (yet equally creative) like acting, performance or artistry.

Which Writers do you admire and why? Leave a comment below.

Blog soon,


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