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Sleeping Arrangements Mass Market Paperback – November 30, 2010


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks; Reprint edition (November 30, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312943970
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312943974
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 4.1 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (90 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #354,959 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Wickham (The Gatecrasher; also, the Shopaholic series as Sophie Kinsella) spins a delightful story of British families forced to spend their vacation together after a mutual friend promises them the same week in his Spanish villa. Chloe Harding hopes that a holiday will soothe the strain between her and longtime partner Philip Murray, who is worried that a recent takeover of his company may cost him his job. Their hopes are dashed when they arrive and find another family already settled at the villa. To Chloe's disappointment, she'll be sharing the space with Hugh Stratton, the beau who broke her heart 15 years ago. Now married to high-maintenance Amanda and with two children, Hugh apologizes, and though Chloe initially expresses nothing but hurt and disdain (all the while keeping their past a secret from Philip), she eventually considers beginning life anew with Hugh. Wickham does a bangup job of creating believable characters—even Amanda is less vapid than she at first seems. Surprises abound as the plot unfolds, and the families begin to wonder whether their mutual friend made an innocent mistake in getting them together. (July)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Wickham, who writes the popular Shopaholic series as Sophie Kinsella, explores what happens when two couples struggling with their relationships end up at the same Spanish vacation villa, owned by their mutual friend Gerard, an arrogant wine critic. Free-spirited Chloe and her longtime partner, the tightly wound Philip, are looking to escape their worries over the fate of his job. Workaholic Hugh can’t seem to connect to his uptight wife, Amanda, or their two daughters. Neither family is pleased to find Gerard has double-booked the villa, but unbeknownst to Philip and Amanda, Chloe and Hugh knew each other years ago, when they had a passionate love affair that ended abruptly when Hugh learned Chloe had a young son. Now together again 15 years later, they find their passion for each other is reignited. With its slightly older characters and more adult problems, Wickham’s novel has a different tone than do her Shopaholic tales, but it’s an equally engaging yarn, sure to please her many fans and gain her new ones. --Kristine Huntley --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I absolutely love Sophie Kinsella and this is the first book I've tried of her chick-lit line featuring less romance and more grounded issues--through her real name, Madeleine Wickham. Sleeping Arrangements is light, refreshing, and has a bit of a implausible--but still charmingly British--storyline; I enjoyed it immensely, but don't think it's something from which I took much away.

The hidden past surrounding Chloe and Hugh is slowly unraveled through flashbacks. From their first encounter at Gerard's villa, there's an explosive recognition--boom. From there on, readers slowly learn what exactly it is that's between them, and how exactly they'll react. Without giving too much away, I will say the plot itself was highly extractable and far-fetched, but I enjoyed it nonetheless.

Wickham's characters aren't particularly deep. For the most part, they're static and unrelateable, but she pens them with such grace and endearment, that I can't help but like them all. Even the ones that are portrayed negatively, such as Hugh's ridiculously anal wife, Amanda, are pleasing and entertaining to follow.

The highlight of this novel would definitely be its execution. The plot and characters themselves are mediocre and unremarkable, but the writing flows easily, and Wickham's style is smooth, often subtly hilarious, and blithe. I breezed through this novel; Sleeping Arrangements is a quick, lighthearted story set to the backdrop of a gorgeous Spanish town; a great read for a sunny day!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By JaneLewis on April 26, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Having read most of Sophie Kinsella's novels, I was eager to dive into her work under her real name, Madeleine Wickham. What I have found is that the Kinsella works are more like adult fairy tales, where everything works out with a happy ending. In her Wickham works, the endings are more true to real life. So if you are wanting a fantasy happy ending, please do not bother with the Wickham works as they will be too much of a downer for you.

Now on to the actual book. I enjoyed "The Gatecrasher" much better. I felt that these characters were way too self-absorbed. Each one wanted to meet the desires of his or her own Id constantly. Amanda actually turned out to be my favorite character of all, mainly because she acted like a real person to me. The rest were too one sided. I hated the Nanny in the book as I felt she was way over the top. I did enjoy the ending because it didn't have the fairy tale ending. It gave a real-ending to the problems presented in the novel.

As for future reading, I think I am going to stick to her lighter fare under Sophie Kinsella.
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17 of 22 people found the following review helpful By emily on July 7, 2009
Format: Paperback
Although I adore this author, I prefer her much more as Sophie Kinsella. When she writes as Madeleine Wickham she lacks the wit and humor that won me over. The characters in this book are not particularly likable and share very different values than I do. Subjects like infidelity, teenage sex and teenage substance abuse are taken very lightly and almost passed off as nothing. The ending seemed a little too picture perfect for the "realness" and meatiness of the rest of the book and basically left me no better and no worse for having read the book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Leslie on June 24, 2010
Format: Paperback
Two couples and their children end up sharing a vacation villa. Will they cheat and break up their families? Given that this is supposed to be an upbeat chick-lit book, not an angsty drama, what do you think? I found the adult characters two dimensional and unappealing. Only the fact that I have enjoyed many of her other books kept me reading to the end. I don't know why but the books she writes as Kinsella are much, much better than the Wickham books.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Janet Morris on November 3, 2012
Format: Paperback
I should start by saying that I am normally a huge fan of any book written under Madeleine Wickham's nom de plume of Sophie Kinsella. That's probably why I felt that this book was such a disappointment. I went into it expecting wit and charm, but I found myself feeling completely let down and unenthusiastic about finishing the book.

My first issue is that characters. There are very few books out there where you look at all of the characters and just think that they are all horrible. I've read books with sociopaths and serial killers that had more decency than these characters. They all seem to be lacking perspective and none seems to truly realize just how good their lives are. They find excuses for their behavior, whether it's rage over a lost lover or depression over being kicked to the curb by your employer. It almost seems like when toddlers end up in a massive pinching session and blame it on another kid because the other person started it. I just wanted to scream at them for their petty attitudes and bickering.

Other than the annoying characters, the book was extremely boring. There was very little flow to the story. There was nothing fun or enlightening. The book was just kind of a "what I did on my summer vacation" essay from elementary school that was stretched out over 300+ pages. I think an elementary school student would have probably come up with something a bit more compelling, though.

There were some parts that I did like about this book, but the bad completely outweighed the good. I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone I know, unless I really and truly thought that they deserved to be bored out of their mind.
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