Shopaholic to the Stars

It’s like she’s had Botox of the soul.

shopaholic lola ramona

shopaholic to the stars sophie kinsella

Title: Shopaholic to the stars
Author: Sophie Kinsella
First Published: 2014
My Rating: 2 of 5 stars (average rating on Goodreads: 3.21)
I would recommend this book to: Shopaholic fans
The Beginning: Okay. Don’t panic.

I’m always excited about a new shopaholic book. It’s the perfect easy read and a good laugh. The latest instalment was no exception. I laughed out loud several times and enjoyed catching up with Becky. Long time no see, and all that.

Shopaholic to the stars fits the usual pattern for a shopaholic novel: Becky shops too much, lies to herself, loses grip on the important things, fights with Luke, fights with Suze, makes up with Luke, makes up with Suze, and finally realizes what’s important in life – only to forget about it in the next book. There are no surprises here and that’s OK.

I’ve accepted that Becky’s mental development ended at the age 12. I don’t expect Becky to learn from her mistakes, that’s not what Shopaholic is about. It’s about laughing out loud and shaking your head, knowing that all though you shop too much, you’re not as bad as Becky.

Becky in Hollywood seemed like a fun setting for a Shopaholic book. And it was most of the time. Actually it started out really good, but then things went horribly wrong. My problem was that Becky seems to get more and more stupid and it took her way too long to realize it this time. When she wasn’t downright idiotic, she was actually very cruel. And this time I didn’t forgive her – although Luke and Suze did.

Becky’s obsession with Hollywood was just too much and so damned boneheaded. I wasn’t at all amused by this part. And then the novel ended with a cliff-hanger! What’s with that? Shopaholic books always have a nice little ending where everything’s in place – that’s part of the deal.

So all in all, I’m not impressed and won’t be eager to read the next installment. I’m not sure things will ever be the same between Becky and me again.

shopaholic lola ramona

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Currently Reading

ghostwritten and the mysteries of udolpho

I started David Mitchells’ Ghostwritten a few days ago. I was a bit worried that it would disappoint me. The last hyped book I’ve read was Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch, which I detested while everyone else seemed to love it. Everybody loves David Mitchel, and in this case I can see why! I’ve only read about 50 pages so far, but I love it! I want to lock myself into a tiny room and throw away the key and just read and read. It’s so bloody good I want to marry it and have its book-babies.

I’m listening to Ann Radcliffe’s The Mysteries of Udolpho on audio. It’s been a month and a half since I started it and I’ve still got 7 hours left! It’s quite good, but I’ve had enough of fainting damsels in distress by now. I’m ready to move on – but I still think I’ll actually miss it when it’s over. When you take this long to finish a book, it becomes part of your life and it’s always a bit sad to see it go.

As always, I’m hopelessly behind on my book reviews. I have three finished books waiting to be reviewed: The new Shopaholic, David Moody’s Them or Us and Maren Uthaug‘s new book which Lindhardt & Ringhof were kind enough to send to me. I want to review them while I still remember the details, but book reviews are not to be rushed, they take time and contemplation.

What about you, what are you currently reading?

them or us shopaholic

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The Day I Didn’t Talk To Atwood

atwood stone mattress

Last week I had a huge disappointment. Mashable had invited me to a Google Hangout with Margaret Atwood. I was so excited and scared and honored, I almost couldn’t contain it. This is my favorite author we’re talking about and I would get to ask her question!

The day finally arrived and I got ready in front of my computer with a cup of tea and her new book. We logged in, chatted a bit and then Atwood arrived. I was a teeny bit star-struck! I was the third to ask her a question. In the middle of her answer to the second question, the technique bailed on us. Something happened to the sound and it started looping! They tried fixing it, but there was nothing they could do so they had to cancel the whole thing! I was almost paralyzed with disappointment. I had been looking so much forward to this, it’s almost unbearable. It’s been a week now, and I’m still not over it. It may not sound like a big deal, but to me it’s a very big deal.

I did, however, get a few moments with Atwood. When the sound failed, we just sat there waiting without being able to talk over the noise. One of my cats jumped up to sit on my lap. When I discretely removed him, I could see Atwood pointing and laughing. She then held up a large bag with a print saying something like: “Human problems only cats understand”. It may not sound like much, but these are memories I’ll probably treasure forever. Imagine how I’d felt if I’d actually talked to her. She seemed so cool! She also held up some stickers saying “WTF” and “Fail”. She made me laugh.

The people at Mashable said they’d try to reschedule, but I’m not holding my breath *sigh*

BTW, Today is Margaret Atwood’s 75th birthday – happy birthday Atwood!

Posted in Books, Random Thoughts | 6 Comments

Gigi and The Cat

If he’s getting married, he’s no longer interesting.

colette gigi and the cat

colette gigi and the cat

Title: Gigi and The Cat
Author: Colette
First Published: 1944
My Rating: 3.5 of 5 stars (average rating on Goodreads: 3:82)
I would recommend this book to: The reader in search of a fun classic
The Beginning: Don’t forget you’re going to Aunt Alicia’s

Gigi, 2 stars
I had high expectation for this one as I’ve got a soft spot for classics with untraditional heroines. Here we have a young girl trained to be a courtesan who surprises her family by her alternative approach to love. It sounds like a winner, but it felt too short for such an interesting subject. I liked Gigi, though. She amused me in all her childishness and the story was a fun quickie.

I put on a martyred expression – like this – as if I was bored to death with every luxury under the sun. I had the time of my life.

The Cat, 5 stars
What a lovely little surprise this one turned out to be! So untraditional, fun and touching. It’s about a man who has a cat he cares deeply for and a fiancé he doesn’t care that much for. When they marry, the wife becomes very jealous of the cat. And she should in fact be jealous, because our hero loves the cat more than he loves his wife (if he loves her at all).

It’s not often you read a story like this! It made me laugh out loud all the way home from Berlin. If you’ve ever preferred cats to people or have been jealous of your boyfriend’s goldfish, you must promise me to read this novella – you won’t regret it!

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Vintage Coat

vintage autumn

autumn vintage coat

vintage autumn

I found this lovely vintage coat in The Good Store in Berlin. It’s warm and comfy and I love that it has a hood. It’s perfect for Autumn! Here’s the entire outfit:

Coat: Second hand from The Good Store
Dress: Second hand from Beyond Retro in London
Boots: Lola Ramona
Bag: Second hand from Twenty

lola ramona boots

Posted in Look of the Day | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

60s Inspiration

60s fashion

60s fashion

60s fashionv

60s fashion

60s fashion

60s fashion

60s fashion

60s fashion has inspired me a lot during the last year or so. I adore the colors, the patterns and the way the dresses are cut – to me, this look is both girlish, fun, sexy and stylish. And I so admire the bold color combinations. I would love to combine colors this way myself – I’m just worried that I’ll look like a kindergarden teacher from hell.

I find a lot of great 60s inspiration on Pinterest. I have a board called 60s Fashion (not very creative, I know) where I pin all the pictures of 60s style that I find inspiring. Are you on Pinterest? If you are, I’d love to see your profiles – just post a link in the comment field below, and I’ll check out your boards.

Btw, I’ve had some problems with WordPress not linking to blogs in the comment section. One of the great things about getting comments is discovering new blogs, so I’ve been really sad that it didn’t work. But I think I’ve fixed now, so you’ll be able to leave an url for your blog that’ll actually work.

Have a groovy Friday night!

60s fashion dancing girls

Posted in Looks I Like | 10 Comments

City of Glass

There was nothing he could do now that would not be a mistake.

paul auster city of glass graphic novel

paul auster city of glass

paul auster city of glass

paul auster city of glass

City of Glass, by Paul Auster – adaptation by Paul Karasik and David Mazzucchelli
My Rating: 4 of 5 stars (average rating on Goodreads: 3.92)
The Beginning: It was a wrong number that started it …

I read Paul Auster’s City of Glass about 10 years ago and loved it! It’s the story about an author whose life has come to a halt after losing his wife and son in an accident. A series of weird phone calls asking for Paul Auster awakens him slightly, and suddenly he finds himself ensnarled in an investigation. He becomes so involved that he loses whatever’s left of his life as he knew it.

It’s a brilliant and ambitious novel, one that I’ve wanted to reread for a long time. What better way to reread it than dive into the graphic novel? It was a wonderful revisit. I remembered much of the weird story and it was almost like meeting an old friend. I was a bit anxious at first: I was really excited about Auster when I first discovered his work, but have been slightly disappointed with his later work, as I’ve felt he’s repeating himself. Rereading one of his first stories brought ‘the real’ Auster back to me. It’s utterly brilliant.

And the graphics were really cool – David Mazzucchelli’s black and white drawings are very atmospheric.

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Sporting Vintage Shoes

vintage shoes

vintage outfit

vintage outfit

Yesterday, I finally sported these gorgeous second hand shoes I thrifted in Sing Blackbird Vintage in Berlin. The skirt is from the same shop – when I found them, I knew that they would look great together. To intensify the autumn look, I paired the shoes and skirt with an old favorite top from Rude and a joop! bag from Marbles Vintage in Amsterdam.

I had a friend over for some knitting, coffee and some serious catching up – I love hanging out with fellow knitters, there’s something so relaxing about knitting while chatting. Afterwards, Mr Boyfriend and I went for a walk to the supermarket – we chose one quite far away because we wanted to get a particular type of shrimps (we needed them to make the most delicious risotto). We snapped these pics on the way. Today I’m relaxing with books and blogging. Tonight we’re going to a concert with Morrissey, which I’m really excited about. I gave Mr Boyfriend the tickets for his birthday last month.

Oh, and a bit of news! On Tuesday I’ll be joining a Google Hangout with Margaret Atwood! I’m so looking forward to this I almost can’t contain it! I might actually be asking my favorite author questions – face to face! Or face to face with a screen in between … Anyway, I’m excited and terrified at the same time. What if I accidentally say something stupid? Or start babbling! I really have to focus on not being too nervous to enjoy it, it could be such fun! Have a nice Sunday – and please keep you fingers crossed for me on Tuesday!

Posted in Look of the Day | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

The Diamond as Big as the Ritz

We’ll be poor, won’t we? Like people in books.

Thee diamond as big as the ritz by Fitzgerald

Title: The Diamond as Big as the Ritz
Author: F. Scott Fitzgerald
First Published: 1922
My Rating: 4 of 5 stars (average rating on Goodreads: 3.82)
I would recommend this book to: Anyone who’s into strange classics playing with fantasy and horror
The Beginning: John T. Unger came from a family that had been well known in Hades – a small town on the Mississippi River – for several generations.

This novel is a bit like Brideshead Revisited and The Great Gatsby all rolled into one with a dash of Alice in Wonderland. Here’s the plot: John T. Unger spends a summer at the house of his very wealthy and secretive friend. This family owns a ridiculously large diamond – as big as the Ritz – and are totally paranoid that someone might steal it – so paranoid that John might be in serious danger.

Everybody’s youth is a dream, a form of chemical madness

This was a weird read and not at all what I expected. It smelled like a straightforward classic, but Fitzgerald prods all expectations and plays with our imagination. The story is imaginative in that everything is overdone. The wealth of this family is unbelievable and their luxuries are incredible and almost childish in their the descriptions. Fitzgerald takes us right to the limit of the American Dream and mocks it in the process.

John remembered that first night as a daze of many colors, of quick sensory impressions, of music soft as a voice in love, and of the beauty of things, lights and shadows, and motions and faces.

The novella is beautifully written. Fitzgerald always delivers splendid prose. If you don’t like his stories, you’ll always have his writing. I think the novella form was perfect for this story: it’s a tasty little thing you can devour in a day, but not so short it leaves you hungry for more.

Let us love for a while, for a year or so, you and me. That’s a form of divine drunkenness that we can all try.

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Looks I Liked in October

I’ve decided to revive an old friend: Looks I Like. I spend a lot of time reading fashion blogs and looking through vintage styles around the world to find inspiration. I think it would be fun to share them with you guys. That way it’s not always about me, me, me … With no further ado, here they are: the looks I liked best in October:

By Hadley:
vintake outfit

By Elle Lu:
vintage outfit

By A Fashion Nerd:
looks i like

By Viele Füchse:
looks i like

I’m curious: Which one do you like best?

Posted in Looks I Like | 10 Comments