Jenny Colgan is back with a re-release of a title first seen in 2009 – and there’s little that would make me happier
Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend
There are few things that make me happier than a Jenny Colgan book, even re-releases that perhaps would have passed me by the first time, feeling a bit too “young” in terms of the lead character. But, this book is so perfectly imperfect, it hits the right note at every moment. Sophie is a spoilt, well-to-do, Daddy’s Girl, with a serious attitude for her stepmother, the ‘teen jaded’ princess with two frenemies who are less friends than enemies, and a rather slothful and shallow existence. She’s a ‘posh girl’ with more money than sense, and no responsibilities. Until her father dies suddenly, and one of the conditions of her receiving her inheritance is to live, totally self-supported, for six months. No one is bailing her out: not her stepmother, not her friends, and not even the housekeeper who’d been with her since childhood will make her a coffee.
So with a thousand pound cheque from her stepmother, two suitcases full of clothes and a quick-lesson in ‘cleaning’, she’s off to a flat share on the King’s Road, with three (sometimes four) very messy art students in a flat that’s never seen a cleaner. Her portion is only covering the rent – utilities are extra – so she starts to clean, learning her way around managing without a never-ending slush fund. It was truly amusing to watch her struggle through with the everyday tasks, and then find a job as a photographer’s assistant in his hush-hush glamor modeling sideline – as she tries to navigate paying bills, learning to make tea, cleaning and adjusting to a life without. And it is truly without as it turns out her father’s bad investments mean that there’s no inheritance, no extras and nothing special in her life. Until she starts a relationship with a roommate – who is chucking in art college while in his final year to join the corporate world, and seeking out an apartment for the two of them after the flat-share ends, all based on a ‘safe’ sense of who she is with him.
Sophie has undergone a ton of growth and change, and aside from some poorly chosen romantic interludes with two different flatmates, and the fact that she never shared her history with them – or her ‘semi-celebrity’ status, she’s finding a career in photography, and has discovered that her ‘friendships’ pre-flat share were far less about friends and more about their need to feel superior and above it all. A real relationship and marriage to the last person she expected, a lovely little girl and a serious surprise at the end gives Sophie the options and choices she always wanted, that she didn’t know that she longed for. The whole experience tempered and strengthened her, providing her a sense of self and self-assurance that she’d never before had, and whole new worlds opened to her with her little family. It’s always fun to read the Colgan of then and the one of now – and see how her characterizations always hold true even as her ability to tell a story has matured and become less ‘in your face’ than the first encounter with Sophie would lead you to believe. One of my favorite authors, Colgan always manages to push the real world aside for her stories, knowing that everything will work out in the end – and I’ll feel happier when it’s over.
Title: Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend
Author: Jenny Colgan
Genre: British, Coming of Age, Contemporary Woman's Fiction, Friendship, Grief, Humor elements, Romantic Elements, Second Chance, Setting: Britain
Published by: William Morrow
Published on: 10 March, 2020 (Re-Release)
Source: Publisher Via Edelweiss
Audio Length: 7 Hours: 47 minutes
Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ Barnes&Noble ♦ iTunes ♦ Kobo ♦ Downpour ♦ IndieBound ♦ Google ♦Audible ♦Direct from Publisher
From beloved New York Times bestselling author Jenny Colgan, a heartwarming and hilarious comedy about a pampered London socialite forced to live life among the common folk.
Sophie Chesterton is London’s “It Girl”. She knows all the right people, goes to all the right parties, and wears all the right clothes…and her rich parents pay for everything. But deep down she suspects that her best “friends”—and her posh lifestyle--are nothing but shallow fakes. Then one evening Sophie’s life takes a shocking, drastic turn, and her father decides it’s high time for the party girl to make her own way in the world.
Forced to earn a meager living as a lowly assistant to a “glamour” photographer, live in a shabby flat with four smelly boys, and eat baked beans from the can—Sophie is desperate to get her old life back, at any cost. But does a girl really need diamonds to be happy?
Full of warmth and sparkle, Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend is a surprisingly winning tale about luxury, life lessons, and the surprisingly low cost of true happiness.
A copy of this title was provided via Publisher Via Edelweiss for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.