Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella is another winner for me! I’ve been a Sophie Kinsella fan since reading the first Shopaholic book and I continue to enjoy her novels. When I saw that this one was a ghost story of sorts I was thrilled. After reading it I definitely wasn’t disappointed. As usual Sophie Kinsella puts her spin on the story and that made it very hard for me to put this book down. I laughed, got teary eyed a few times and then laughed some more.
Lara is a typical Kinsella character I would say. She’s funny, witty and has a certain wacky charm that makes you like her. Lara is attending her great aunt’s funeral. A great aunt that she doesn’t know at all, really no one in the family does. Great Aunt Sadie lived to be a hundred and five and has been in a old folks home for years. Sadly, for her, her two nephews and their children had never bothered to visit her or pay her any attention.
As the funeral is wrapping up Lara starts hearing someone asking about a necklace. She looks around and can’t see anyone but can still hear the voice. Then she sees a hand connected to a young lady and she freaks out. Of course no one else can see her. It happens to be Aunt Sadie when she was much younger – in her twenties to be exact. She is screaming at Lara to stop the funeral until her necklace can be found. Lara, with her zany style finds a way to put a stop to the funeral but at what costs to herself? And will the ghost of Aunt Sadie drive Lara completely crazy?
Aunt Sadie is quite the character and not one I’ll soon forget. She of course was a young lady in the twenties so her focus is still all on what was popular in that time period. She hassles Lara into dressing like a twenties girl complete with the dress, jewelry and hair style. It was hilarious! Aunt Sadie spends her time in the story driving people crazy essentially to get what she wants – just think about a voice screaming something into your head and not stopping. Then imagine yourself not doing what it asks…hmmmm, I’m thinking I’d be listening. Of course the only person who can see Aunt Sadie is Lara so talking to the air isn’t usually a good thing for convincing people you’re sane.
Lara ends up learning a lot from Aunt Sadie and she also gets to learn a lot about her great aunt. She realizes that this woman had a life, she had hopes and dreams just like Lara. In Aunt Sadie and Lara’s quest to find this necklace that Aunt Sadie just can’t do without they go through a series of hilarious moments and a few serious ones. Thanks to Aunt Sadie there’s even a little romance woven into the story. While reading this book you really have to let go of the believable and just enjoy it. It is a ghost story and it’s really wacky at times but it’s also a great read and there’s really so much more to the story than I’ve touched on but I really don’t want to ruin it for anyone who will pick it up to read. Oh and I have to mention I have a new favorite work…gobsmacked. Yes, I can see myself using that one quite often from now on.
I have to say though that while Kinsella books are usually fun and chick-lity, I think this one had a bit deeper message for me. Even though a person’s body ages it doesn’t mean their mind has. They still feel young at heart, they want to listen to music and laugh and live, it’s only their bodies that can’t keep up. Also, the message again that I’ve come across often lately and that is don’t discount the elderly. They have stories to tell, they lived in a time we didn’t and they love to look back and remember and share. We just have to take the time.
Those who are Sophie Kinsella fans will likely love this newest one from her and those who aren’t should give it a shot. Kinsella writes with a lot of humor and fun and that’s one of the things I like most about her books. I turn the last page of the book and I feel good. I like that. Twenties Girl was released by Random House on July 21 and you can buy it here in the US and here in Canada.