MY (not so) PERFECT LIFE - Sophie Kinsella
Dial Press - Trade Paperback
ISBN:  978-0-81298-771-3
July 2017
Chick Lit

London and Somerset, England - Present Day

Catherine (Katie) Brenner has escaped the farm and is living the life in London.  She tells everyone that she has it all:  the glam job and a cool apartment that is all documented on her Instagram feed touting her social life and five star dining experiences.  Yep, Katie is living it up in the city, where everyone knows her as Cat Brenner.  Katie dropped her country accent and her nickname in favor of a cooler handle, but the reality is that she rents a drab single room in a too-crowded flat that she can't afford; she struggles through a tedious and long commute to reach her low level job as an administrative assistant in a branding (advertising) company, and her Instagram feed is chock full of dreamy wanna-be photos.

In Cat/Katie's eyes, her boss Demeter Farlowe has it all, and Cat/Katie aspires to reach the heights Demeter lives and works in.  Demeter has the perfect family life: a loving husband, two perfect children, a posh townhouse, the latest styles in fashion, and the best job.  Cat/Katie greatly admires Demeter and her brilliance.  Her feelings are purely a case of hero-worship.  And although Cat/Katie has only worked at Cooper Clemmow for seven months, she drafts glamorous brochures and advertising ideas in her spare time and continually presents them to Demeter, hoping her boss will promote her.  One day Cat/Katie meets Alex, a handsome and brilliant young man who likes her ideas and even suggests a wee bit of romance.  After that, her co-workers, Flora and Rosa, invite her to lunch, giving her an exclusive opportunity to move up in the ranks of popularity at work.  But it all falls to pieces when Cat/Katie is fired.  Demeter coldly assures her she has done nothing wrong, it is simply budget cuts, last one hired, first one to go.

And so, unable to tell her father and her stepmom the truth, Cat/Katie moves home to Somerset to help her family start a new business on the farm:  they are going to build yurts and get in on the "glamping" craze, upscale camping for those who don't like roughing it.  Three months later, Cat has become Katie once again and tells everyone she is on sabbatical from her job.  Katie has moved back into her old room and helps run the new glamping business, Anster Farms.  All goes well until Demeter and her family arrive as guests.  Katie is beside herself with worry and embarrassment.  How can she allow Demeter to see how far she has fallen?  Can she disguise herself enough to take out a little revenge on Demeter without revealing her identity?

MY (not so) PERFECT LIFE is the best book ever!  Filled with a plethora of quirky characters; you will love reading about Cat/Katie's life.  Her expectations of how life should be are a hilarious foray into the work-a-day world of a young woman.  This story is full of fun and laughter, struggle and dreams, deceit and heartbreak, and a tiny bit of romance as Katie comes to learn about truth and reality in ways she never imagined.

MY (not so) PERFECT LIFE is a laugh-out-loud story of relationships and female friendships in modern day life.  Enjoy!

Diana Risso