“I’ve lost it. The only thing in the world I wasn’t supposed to lose. My engagement ring. It’s been in Magnus’s family for three generations. And now, the very same day his parents are coming, I’ve lost it. The very same day. Do not hyperventilate, Poppy. Stay positive!! ”
And the book pretty much continues with similar style with lots of smiley faces, text kisses and text messages.
A couple of glasses of bubbly with the girls at a charity do and Poppy’s life has gone into meltdown. Not only has she lost her engagement ring, emerald claim to be the heirloom of fiancé Magnus Travis; but in the panic that followed, she got mugged and lost her phone. As she paces shakily round the hotel foyer she spots an abandoned phone in a bin. Finders keepers! Now she can leave a number with the hotel staff. It was meant to be!
Except the phone’s owner, businessman Sam Roxton, doesn’t agree. He wants his phone back, and doesn’t appreciate Poppy reading all his messages and wading into his personal life and Poppy needs to keep Sam’s mobile phone because it is crucial that her friends contact her if they found the ring.
Somehow Poppy manages to convince Sam to let her hang on to the phone for a few days to bide her time. In return, she offers to become Sam’s temporary PA, forwarding any e-mails and text messages to him. So she’s sharing an inbox with a complete stranger for a couple of days. It can’t be that hard, can it?
Thus unravels a tragicomic of revelations and errors as Poppy becomes closer to a man she doesn’t know than the man she is about to marry.
As usual she used her great tried and tested formulae. If I recount what are Kinsella selling point that won my vote, I would say is this:
- She paces her book well, sustaining interest evenly throughout. Sophie Kinsella opens the book at breakneck speed and keeps up the pace throughout. From page one we are thrown into Poppy’s hyperventilating panic
- Her book makes you laugh because her heroines are ineffectual yet always ended up solving an intellectual problem by fluke
- I like that she injects some corporate antics and politics in her book
- On top of everything else Kinsella is a keen observer of contemporary popular culture.
In every book I am able to find social trends or occurrence that I could relate to. In this book Kinsella questions if mobile phone is the most intimate piece of gadget we ever own and if we would share our mobile phones with our partners.
What is most interesting that is mentioned in one instance where Poppy thought Sam’s email replies were to short and curt. Such as: “Ok fine.” “Ok, Thank you.” For many years I have been bothered by people who gave mono-syllabus reply on email and would assume the other person as being inpersonal and very blunt. Men usually write short replies while women tend to explain themselves unnecessarily. Could it be also that women are more insecure that they feel they have to write longer replies with smiley faces and lots of xxx kisses? I just did it again! (Honestly I didn’t know xxx were kisses until this book confirms it).
No one underestimates the power of Sophie Kinsella. I hardly read chicklit but I’m willing to read a few more to compare. Her hardback books are selling £18.99 more expensive than other hardbacks and less than a non-fiction hardback. Her writing style makes it cross-Atlantic friendly. Although written in UK English, some expressions are American. I particularly like it (or hate it!) that in this book, Kinsella uses a lot of footnotes. You see, I hate footnotes. I tend to overlook footnotes and by the time I get to the end of the page and found a footnote, I have to backtrack what I read to find that tiny whinny numerical subscript! I hate footnotes and because Kinsella uses them indiscriminately in this novel, it makes it seems hilarious.
I like Kinsella’s stand-alone novel better than her shopaholics series and this without exception.
Hardback. Publisher: Bantam Press 2012; Length: 381 pages; Setting: England. Source: Reading Library copy. Finished reading at: 15th March 2012, Thursday.
Other Kinsella’s books review: