First of all, I must confess that I’ve read a lot of Sophie Kinsella‘s books in my time. I fell in love with materialistic, but big-hearted, Becky in Confessions of a Shopaholic and haven’t looked back since.
Sophie’s books have always been a guilty pleasure of mine. I’m not usually one for chick-lit but she writes it very well. Which is why I had high hopes for her latest novel and it certainly didn’t disappoint.
Finding Audrey is Sophie Kinsella‘s first (and hopefully not last!) YA novel. It follows the life of Audrey, a teenage girl who suffers from an intense anxiety disorder that prevents her from leaving the house and forming relationships outside of her family.
She’s making slow progress with her psychologist, Dr Sarah and although Audrey is reluctant to try new things outside of her comfort zone, she is eager to beat her anxieties and fears. A therapy project sees her filming her every day life and turning her family into a documentary.
Although mental health issues are displayed and discussed, the true heart of this novel is family. Audrey’s crazy (but loveable) family are very easy to connect with. We’ve got the Daily Mail-obsessed mother, the game addicted older brother, a mischievous toddler and the sheepish dad that when mixed together create a hilarious dynamic.
Finding Audrey is also a love story of sorts. Her brother’s friend and video game partner, Linus helps Audrey face the world again, bit by bit and it’s lovely seeing their relationship unfold on the page.
Despite this, the plot wasn’t as strong as some of Sophie’s previous novels. The characters are loud, dynamic and psychologically whole, however they weren’t put in enough varied situations for them to shine as much as they could have.
Having said that, Finding Audrey is a breath of fresh air for any Sophie Kinsella fan. In fact, it’s made me fall in love all over again with her writing all over again.
You can watch a trailer for the book here.
* Thank you to Random House Kids for sending me this copy to review.