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Twenties Girl: A Novel Paperback – March 9, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Dial Press Trade Paperback; Reprint edition (March 9, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385342039
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385342032
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.9 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (523 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #44,232 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Amazon Exclusive: Sophie Kinsella on Twenties Girl

Sophie Kinsella is a former financial journalist and the author of the best-selling novels Confessions of a Shopaholic, Shopaholic Takes Manhattan, Shopaholic Ties the Knot, Shopaholic & Sister, Shopaholic & Baby, Can You Keep a Secret?, The Undomestic Goddess, and Remember Me?. She lives in England, where she is at work on her next book.

Writing Twenties Girl was like going on my own magical mystery tour. My U.S. editor Susan Kamil had once said casually, "You should write a ghost story one day." This comment stayed with me for years. I loved the idea, but didn't know who my ghost could be. I've always loved the glamour and spirit of the 1920s, and the idea came to me of a flapper ghost. A feisty, fun, glamorous girl who adored to dance and drink cocktails and get her own way. I wanted her to be a determined character who would blast into the life of someone with no warning and cause havoc. I then decided she should haunt a thoroughly modern girl, with all the culture clashes and comedy that would bring.

Having come up with this idea I loved it, so it then remained to plunge myself into 1920s research, which was no hardship at all, as I find the era fascinating. I researched vintage make-up, vintage dresses, read fiction from the period, investigated 1920s slang, and tried to channel as much I could of those feisty flappers who cut their hair short (shock!), smoked cigarettes in public (shock!), had sex (shock!) and generally rebelled in all the outrageous ways they could.

The book isn't a period piece though. It's a modern story about two girls and their sparky friendship, right here in the 21st century. One of them just happens to be a ghost from the 1920s. It's a quest, a romance, and a coming of age... and above all a comedy. It's no exaggeration to say that writing the character of Sadie made me look at life differently, and I hope some readers feel the same way. —Sophie Kinsella

Sophie Kinsella on Jewelry in Twenties Girl

When I was at college I had a bicycle which I rarely used and which sat, week after week, in the bike racks. One day I went to get it out--and found a diamante necklace twined round the spokes of the front wheel. It was an old, vintage-style necklace, one of the prettiest things I’d ever seen. On my bike! How had it got there? Had someone borrowed my bike and dropped it? Was it a romantic gift from a secret admirer? (Ok, unlikely...)

I put up a notice in college--but got no claimers. It was mine! I wore that necklace over and over--and felt as though it had somehow magical qualities. Would it have felt so magical if it were a scarf or a hat or a purse? I don’t think so.

Jewelry has a magic all its own. Precious stones have always attracted legends, myths, crimes, lust. Quite sane women will go to pieces at the sight of a big enough diamond. Even as a tiny child I was fascinated by beads, jewels, tiaras...anything that glittered. And, like books, I find it hard to give pieces of jewelry away, even after I’ve stopped wearing them.

The biggest symbol of jewelry is love. Whose heart doesn’t stop on being presented with a little velvet box? Who secretly doesn’t crave a diamond, however teeny? Of course true love is putting out the rubbish every night...but that won’t make you gasp and tilt your hand to catch the facets of light.

When I was writing Twenties Girl I knew I needed to give Sadie, my ghost character, a mission. There was something in the world she still wanted--and it didn’t take long to decide on jewelry. A ring seemed too obvious...bracelets too inconsequential...but a necklace was perfect. I wanted it to be tactile, romantic, and the kind of piece you could imagine wearing with anything. Guided by research into jewelry of the 1920s, I conjured up in my head a long necklace of glimmering yellow glass beads, with a dragonfly pendant set with rhinestones. Not priceless....but special. I could imagine Sadie twirling the beads as she danced, I could imagine her gathering them and letting them drop. I could see it as an iconic, timeless piece.

A dragonfly seemed a perfect emblem for Sadie, too--beautiful, fragile, and darting around like quicksilver. The dragonfly symbol has different meanings for different cultures--for some it’s a symbol of change, for others it represents the subconscious. In Japanese paintings, dragonflies can mean new light and joy. To some Native Americans they’re the souls of the dead. All of these interpretations are perfect for the character of Sadie--a ghost who needs to "move on" and for whom the dragonfly necklace has a meaning all its own.

The more I wrote about Sadie’s dragonfly necklace the more it came to mean to both her and me--and I hope it does to readers, too.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Think Topper, that impossibly sophisticated and goofy 1937 ghost tale of blithe spirits bugging the only living soul who can hear them. Kinsella creates an equally vexing and endearing shade, Sadie, a wild-at-heart flapper with unfinished earthly business who badgers 27-year-old great-niece Lara into doing her bidding. Predictable mayhem and the most delicious and delightful romp a ghost and girl-at-loose-ends could ever have in 21st century London ensue. Sadie discovers just how loved she really is, and Lara channels her inner '20s girl to discover the difference between wanting to be in love and finding love. Kinsella, a master of comic pacing and feminine wit (see: the wildly successful Shopaholic series), casts a bigger net with this piece of fun and fluff, weaving family dynamics and an old-fashioned mystery into the familiar chick lit romance. And there's a sweet nod to old folks (All that white hair and wrinkled skin is just cladding.... They were all young, with love affairs and friends and parties and an endless life ahead of them). It's a breath of crackling fresh air that may well keep readers warm right through winter. (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.

More About the Author

Sophie Kinsella is the author of the bestselling Shopaholic series as well as the novels Can You Keep a Secret?, The Undomestic Goddess, Remember Me?, Twenties Girl, I've Got Your Number, and Wedding Night. She lives in England.

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Customer Reviews

Well written characters, great story.
MaySylph
Fun reading, good book that would be great if you are looking for a light read.
Emily Clark
The plot line gets a bit unreal at times but it does so to help the story.
E. Koren

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

54 of 56 people found the following review helpful By J. Burns on September 11, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I have read each of the Sophie Kinsella NON-Shopaholic novels, and liked each one more than the last. This one, however, had me completely smitten. I truly lapped up every word, every new twist and turn. I laughed out loud for pages at a time, and I cried huge tears at the end, partly for the story, and partly because I had to leave these characters behind.

The unfolds almost perfectly. Every detail becomes, in some way, important to the plot and to the characters. Not only has she crafted a fine romance and nice little mystery (perfect for grown-up fans of Nancy Drew books), but she has also created a unique and wonderfully grounded vision of what it must be like to live with a ghost who can only partly interact with our world.

Clever, funny, and genuine, this book has all of the characteristics of basic "chick lit" (first person storytelling, female protaganist, kissing) but it is so much more. Like another fantasy classic, this novel is practically perfect in every way.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By K. Flegal on March 10, 2010
Format: Paperback
"Twenties Girl" by Sophie Kinsella (author of "Confessions of a Shopaholic," among others), is the story of Lara Lington and her great-aunt Sadie. The catch? Sadie is a ghost, and Lara barely knew her in life. Through Sadie's persistent haunting, Lara gets to know her--and in the process, learns quite a lot about herself.

We first meet Lara at Sadie's funeral. Sadie, 105, passed away recently, and Lara's parents pressure her to go to the funeral. Lara would rather be anywhere but at the boring funeral for an old lady she didn't know. Her desire to be elsewhere increases when she starts hearing a voice no one else can hear. She tries to escape, but Great Aunt Sadie's ghost won't leave her alone. To satisfy Sadie, Lara must stop the funeral in progress. This entails an accusation of murder. The ensuing hysteria is made more comic by Sadie nagging Lara to find Sadie's missing necklace--she won't leave without it.

In the process of searching for the special necklace, Lara learns just what a fascinating person her great aunt was, and learns how she wants to live. Sadie teaches Lara about relationships, having fun, and moving on. In the process, she leads Lara to step beyond her boundaries and live life fulfilled. And, this being Chick Lit, she finds The Man for her--who is not at all who she expected!

"Twenties Girl" was a fun and satisfying read. It took me 50 pages to really get into it, but it was worth it. The ending is more sweet than bitter, and I closed the book feeling like it had ended right.
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17 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Allyson Yagi on September 22, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Sophie Kinsella is well-known for her easy-to-read-breezes and hilarity throughout the novel -- this exactly what is brought to the table in her new novel Twenties Girl. Lara plays a very familiar role for those familiar with -- Sophie Kinsella novels -- Lara is sincere, resourceful, and a bit naive. The plot is rather far-fetched and a atd silly at times, but we've come to expect that from Ms. Kinsella...and that is what we're fans of - a light-hearted, smooth flowing story, that is fun to read.

Lara and Sadie (the ghost of her aunt) make a great odd couple and compliment each other well. When Lara comes across a hurdle, Sadie is there to add to her difficulties. While this set-up is a perfect setting for humor, they story is more about values, family, friends, honesty, and trust. But what Sophie Kinsella novel would be complete without romance? Well, Ed, fills that role...and with his kind and caring nature, the romance adds to the pleasantry of the novel. In short, Twenties Girl is a fun, light breeze, that all fans Sophie Kinsella will absolutely love. And for those new to the author, I would compare it to JoAnna Wylde's novel: Price of Freedom (highly recommend) if you haven't read it yet.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Lilly Flora VINE VOICE on August 14, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
There are a few authors I would follow pretty much anywhere. Drastic changes in writing style or genera don't matter with these writers because I know that no matter what they're doing differently I'll still enjoy what they wrote.

Sophie Kinsella is one of these authors. This is how I ended up reading a ghost story.

Laura Lington is going through kind of a rough patch. The brand new head hunting business she started with an old school friend is not going well because the old friend ran off to live abroad with a guy she just met. And Laura's boyfriend Josh dumped her by email-with no apparent reason. Therefore it's not at all surprising that Laura is massively stressed out.

But stress can't explain what happens next.

While attending the extremely small and pathetic funeral for her great aunt Sadie (who was 105 before she died) Laura starts to hear a voice. A voice that gets louder. A voice that gets demanding. A voice that is screaming, "Where is my necklace?"

A voice only Laura can hear.

The voice is soon followed by a body of a young woman in twenties style clothing.

Whose name happens to be Sadie.

Laura's not sure if she's going crazy or not, but one thing is obvious. The only way to get Sadie to shut up is by doing what she wants-and what she wants is the funeral stopped until she has her treasured dragonfly necklace back. Laura goes along with it because having a ghost screaming in your ear can be pretty annoying and anyway, nobody else can help. Besides-how hard can this possibly be? And it's not like Sadie can do anything to make Laura's life more difficult-can she?
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