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The Booster: A Novel Hardcover – March 21, 2006


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New Adult Fiction by Rainbow Rowell
Acclaimed author Rainbow Rowell's latest book, Landline, offers a poignant, humorous look at relationships and marriage. Learn more

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Atria (March 21, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743281837
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743281836
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,854,511 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Solow's spectacular debut sounds a warning to fashionista shopaholics while providing a healing catharsis that anyone grieving over the loss of a loved one can appreciate. "It is mine. It is mine. It is mine" is the mantra Jillian Siegel repeats before any major shoplifting expedition, believing her hobby is not a crime but her "birthright." The Upper East Sider's addiction to larceny increases after she loses her ad agency job just before the agency acquires the coveted Loevner's department store account. Loevner's had once been owned by Jillian's dying uncle Bingo, a beloved parental figure. As a little girl in bunny fur, Jillian had appeared in the original ad that defined Loevner's upscale glamour. After Shelly, a needy young drifter whom Jillian meets in jail in the wake of a tourist-trap incident, introduces Jillian into a Peruvian shoplifting ring, Jillian becomes the ring's star American booster. "Designer clothes are like armor" providing "protection from the masses," Jillian thinks, but by the thrilling wind-up, Solow, an ad agency veteran, has ripped the tags off this assumption, forcing Jillian to face what compels her to steal. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

"A spectacular debut...thrilling!" - Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

"Solow writes remarkably well - both tender and razor sharp." - The Plain Dealer (Cleveland)

"A heart-stopping look at the pathology of a fabulously dressed shoplifter." - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

"The Booster is a true original. I thoroughly enjoyed this warm, witty, well-written book." - Jane Green, author of The Other Woman and Jemima J

"Solow steals the show with this energetic debut." - People --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

More About the Author

Jennifer Solow is the author of THE ARISTOBRATS - about four best friends who've finally made it the very top of the populadder at Wallingford Academy only to be handed a seriously bleh assignment that threatens to ruin everything (even their friendship).

Like her characters, Jennifer once attended an exclusive private school where her spot on the populadder waivered depending on whatever haircut she had at the time (long: good, short: not so good) and where the idea for this book began.

Soon after, Jennifer moved to Manhattan, where she was an advertising creative director, wore a lot of cool clothes, and worked with a few famous guys named Spike. She was stuck in a meeting in downtown Manhattan on 9/11 when she decided to become a writer. Her first novel, The Booster, became a national bestseller.

She now lives in Mill Valley with her husband and two tweenagers. (And no, she never borrows anything they say word-for-word because that would be a terrible thing for a mother to do!)

She is working on the next Aristobrats: Stay Pretty, Wallingford!?

Customer Reviews

I just felt sad when the book was over as I just wanted to keep being a part of it.
Jason D. Dorn
Thrust into a precarious situation, one many of us have unfortunately experienced, she copes the only way she knows how.
Robert Burwell
A fabulous book by a gifted writer who flawlessly weaves entertainment and intrigue!
Hilary H. Spector

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Sandra on June 15, 2006
Format: Hardcover
First, if I could've given this novel half-stars, I would've. I liked it more than just a 3, but not quire as much as a 4. So...like 3.8 maybe :)

I was actually recommended this novel from the author herself through Amazon. After reading the 3-chapter excerpt on her website, I was hooked and just had to get my hands on a copy of the entire book. I enjoyed the novel, just not as much as I would've expected from the first 3 chapters.

Jillian Siegel is a department store owner's niece, although no one knows it. After being fired from her job, she takes to her favorite comfort-activity: shoplifting. As the title gives away, that's what the majority of the novel is about...Jillian's shoplifting.

For me, the novel was awesome and completely addicting until Jillian starts working with the shoplifting ring. I have to say, I found myself trudging through those chapters just hoping she would get herself out and get her life back on track. The "big job" seemed no bigger than any other one...although there was a lot of time spent building it up. For me, too much time was spent building up the heist, and the book wrapped up too quickly. Although I must say, the ending was perfect!

In all, I enjoyed The Booster. I would absolutely recommend it for an awesome beach read. I'm definitely looking forward to Ms. Solow's next novel!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Katie Wilkes on July 9, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I thoroughly enjoyed Solow's The Booster--much more than I had anticipated. It's glossy cover had me expecting laundry lists of expensive clothes, and while I often did find myself amidst racks of fashionable suits and luxurious cashmere sweaters, Solow digs much deeper into the psyche of protagonist Jillian Siegel than it's book jacket ever would have indicated.

Jillian, niece to the founder of a ritzy Manhattan department store, seems as though she'd be living a picture perfect life, but of course, her thirty-ish years of life have been anything but easy. By the time we meet her in the novel, her beloved uncle (and now former owner of the old department store) is nearing death, she's just lost her job, she's on the rocks with her boyfriend of two years and she finds great pleasure in shoplifting--daily. Eventually, Jillian comes to realize that she has to put an end to her behavior (mind you, this is after she meets her new best friend in a holding cell and goes through intensive training to join an underground shoplifting ring).

Slightly unrealistic but fresh enough to hold my attention, my only real complaint is Solow's use of present tense throughout most of the novel. As readers, we're so used to seeing past tense used in books like this one, that I don't think it was necessary or even beneficial to the story. But, overall, I really did enjoy it. The novel really picks up once Jillian becomes buddy buddy with her quirky cellmate Shelly. After that, I was hooked until the novel's very creative and satisfying ending.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Heather J. Brestle on March 28, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Scandalous!

You don't have to be a fashionista to adore this

book- but being one myself I found myself wanting

to jump into Jillian Siegal's Miu Miu slingbacks

and shoplift right along with her!

Her amazingly descriptive writing style makes being a klepto seem like the latest trend!

Loved it!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By auntie on March 24, 2006
Format: Hardcover
The Booster is great story telling and characterization. Jillian has so many facets to her personality. You want to love her, because she obvioiusly needs it. I know her mother. You want to slap the devil in her around, because she obviously needs it. I am that mother. She is spoiled, self-involved, but so inately tender, while she struggles with the life that encompasses her. As she gradually becomes fully evolved, you are hoping for a happy ending. She will use all that she has learned from that mother's lifestyle and her upbringing to succeed in the rest of the life laid before her. I really enjoyed Jillian's journey. Hmmmm, this book may spell out how one of the young women in my office wears designer clothes........that and the fact that she is unmarried and without children.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Yuppie Scum on March 24, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This is a really fun and funny book. All of the brands mentioned and the mind of a woman obsessed with gear resonate well in the 2006 corporate fashion world. Every monogrammed L.L. Bean beach tote bag from Nantucket to the Hamptons will have a copy of The Booster in it this summer.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A. Angelo on June 13, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I loved this book, plain and simple. Jillian is a fantastic, intriguing, and naughty klepto that you just can't help but love. The story is unique and leaves you wanting more. I can't wait to see future works from Jennifer. Congrats on a fantastic debut!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Angela D. Moore on November 16, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Starts out a bit depressing...then just gets BORING! This is my idea of truly terrible "chick lit". 20 years ago this would have been a cheesy Harlequin romance, now it's dressed up to look like a proper novel - don't be fooled!
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By N. Larrabee on April 9, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Jillian Siegel is overwrought about an upcoming advertising pitch for a prized account. As she starts, her boss cuts to the chase and fires her. Jillian is reluctant to share her bad news with anyone. Making things worse was that the account was for Loevner's Department store. Her beloved uncle is dying and she is having difficult facing the news. Her Uncle "Bingo" Meyer Loevner created Loevner's Department store with his partner. Unfortunately after being fired, Jillian challenges herself to do more petit thievery. She gets caught and meets up with a woman named Shelly in jail. Jillian becomes a mentor of sorts to Shelly in their quest to boost items from a variety of stores. Jillian seems to make all the wrong choices as things in her life go astray. She comes to her senses in the end and is able to make things right. A funny and enjoyable read.
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