Thursday, October 17, 2019

Sophie Kinsella's holiday treat...plus a book giveaway

Photo by John Swannell
We're thrilled to have Sophie Kinsella back at CLC today to celebrate the recent publication of her latest novel, Christmas Shopaholic. She's here today to get us in a holiday (shopping) mood. Thanks to The Dial Press, we have THREE copies to give away!

Sophie Kinsella has sold over 40 million copies of her books in more than 60 countries, and she has been translated into over 40 languages.

Sophie first hit the UK bestseller lists in September 2000 with her first novel in the Shopaholic series – The Secret Dreamworld of a Shopaholic (also published as Confessions of a Shopaholic). The book’s heroine, Becky Bloomwood – a fun and feisty financial journalist who loves shopping but is hopeless with money – captured the hearts of readers worldwide. Becky has since featured in seven further bestselling books, Shopaholic Abroad (also published as Shopaholic Takes Manhattan), Shopaholic Ties the Knot, Shopaholic & Sister, Shopaholic & Baby, Mini Shopaholic, Shopaholic to the Stars and Shopaholic to the Rescue. Becky Bloomwood came to the big screen in 2009 with the hit Disney movie Confessions of a Shopaholic, starring Isla Fisher and Hugh Dancy.

Sophie has also written nine standalone novels which have all been bestsellers in the UK, USA and other countries around the world: Can You Keep A Secret?, The Undomestic Goddess, Remember Me?, Twenties Girl, I’ve Got Your Number, Wedding Night, My Not So Perfect Life, which was a Goodreads Choice Awards finalist for Best Fiction in 2017, Surprise Me and I Owe You One.

Sophie wrote her first novel under her real name, Madeleine Wickham, aged 24, whilst she was working as a financial journalist. The Tennis Party was immediately hailed as a success by critics and the public alike and became a top ten bestseller. She went on to publish six more novels as Madeleine Wickham.

Sophie was born in London. She studied music at New College, Oxford, but after a year switched to Politics, Philosophy and Economics. She lives in the UK with her husband and family. (Bio adapted from Sophie's website.)

Visit Sophie online:
Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram


Synopsis:
'Tis the season for change and Becky Brandon (née Bloomwood) is embracing it, returning from the States to live in the charming village of Letherby and working with her best friend, Suze, in the gift shop of Suze’s stately home. Life is good, especially now that Becky takes time every day for mindfulness . . . which actually means listening to a meditation tape while hunting down online bargains.

But Becky still adores the traditions of Christmas: Her parents host, carols play on repeat, her mother pretends she made the Christmas pudding, and the neighbors come ’round for sherry in their terrible holiday sweaters. Things are looking cheerier than ever, until Becky’s parents announce they’re moving to ultra-trendy Shoreditch—unable to resist the draw of craft beer and smashed avocados—and ask Becky if she’ll host this year. What could possibly go wrong?


Her sister demands a vegan turkey, her husband insists that he just wants aftershave—again, and little Minnie demands a very specific picnic hamper: Surely Becky can manage all this, as well as the surprise appearance of an old-boyfriend-turned-rock-star and his pushy new girlfriend, whose motives are far from clear. But as the countdown to Christmas begins and her big-hearted plans take an unexpected turn toward disaster, Becky starts to wonder if chaos will ensue, or if she’ll manage to bring comfort and joy to Christmas after all. (Courtesy of Amazon.)


What is a favorite compliment you have received on your writing?
The greatest compliment I have ever received was “effortless”. I love it when people think I just wrote a book all in one quick dash, because it feels “natural”. The truth is it takes months to plan, but if the book feels effortless then I have done my job! I am also very very happy if anyone describes my writing as funny.

Have you ever considered writing a kid's or young adult series about Becky's daughter Minnie?
That is such a fun idea! I have never thought about it, but I am always up for new plans and ideas, so who knows?

Which was your favorite Shopaholic novel to write?
I think it’s a tie between the first Shopaholic book - because that is where I met/created Becky - and this most recent book Christmas Shopaholic. I’m such a sucker for Christmas! I played carols while I wrote, I read Christmas magazines, I fully immersed in all things festive and I loved it!

What is your favorite Christmas movie?
Every year, my family watches The Muppet Christmas Carol. We sing the songs and quote the lines and I can’t imagine Christmas without it.

What is the best Christmas gift you have ever given someone? Received from someone?
Not exactly a gift, but we were thrilled to welcome my daughter into the world on 22nd December and bring her home from hospital on Christmas Eve. That was very special.

What is a favorite Christmas tradition in your family?
We play a brilliant game where you have to put on hats and gloves and scarves and eat a chocolate bar with a knife and fork. We also read “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas” every Christmas Eve before we put out mince pies and sherry by the fire for Father Christmas to find.

Thanks to Sophie for visiting with us and to The Dial Press for sharing her book with our readers.

How to win: Use Rafflecopter to enter the giveaway. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us. If you have trouble using Rafflecopter on our blog, enter the giveaway here

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Giveaway ends October 23rd at midnight EST.

36 comments:

Jane said...

Love her books and would love to win this one.

Janine said...

I have never hosted a big meal. The craziest thing that ever happened at someone else's big meal that I was at was at my mother-in-law's house. She was cooking for the family and the a/c went out in the middle of the summer. We had to go buy a bunch of fans to help cool down the house.

Lori Thomas said...

Never hosted a big meal. Nothing strange that I remember

Jennifer said...

I just hosted my first Thanksgiving this weekend! Nothing crazy happened, and I was so grateful!

arletta said...

I have hosted meals for large groups of people. One meal, I made a new recipe and it overflowed the baking dish and my guests came in to our smoke-filled house. Not the best welcome!

Darlene Reine said...

I have 5 brothers and 6 sisters and with my family Christmas Eve was always a big gathering. Now that we are all married and have families we continued the tradition for a while. After the passing of my parents the siblings try to have a luncheon for the siblings and spouses. My how the traditions change over the years.

Sherry said...

My one and only time I hosted Christmad my husband, at the time was do drunk that everyone was in my tony kitchen to escape him.

Unknown said...

Nothing strange has ever happened during a holiday meal which is why I need this book to live vicariously through! -Krista

R's Rue said...

I like dinners with lots of love.

JeanneK said...

I have hosted a big meal. I especially remember One Thanksgiving when we were having a full feast for a large number and the oven broke while the turkey was roasting. It was total chaos, ended up having to go to a buffet, but we had the best time and everyone was thankful we were together. I’m dying to read this book.

Suburban prep said...

I have hosted a few but I have a small condo and a large family. I had everything ready for one Christmas dinner and my sister gets here and then gets the gifts she had in her car out and sees that she did not bring the part of the meal that she said she would bring. She got back in the car and went back to her place and then back to ours and well it takes about 30-40 minutes each way. Good thing I had a lot of appetizers.

traveler said...

I hosted many holiday dinners and worked extremely hard preparing and setting up. Out of town visitors brought nothing and ate and ran. Not a pleasant experience at all.

Nancy Payette said...

Bizarre things usually start once the second bottle of wine is opened. 😉

Bonnie K. said...

I've hosted a few holiday meals. Nothing crazy or bizarre happened. We would be considered boring. LOL The food is good, though.

Michelle L said...

I must lead a boring life because I don't remember anything too terribly crazy happening at a holiday meal.

Linda Kish said...

My family was a small one so no big get togethers ever. Now we are down to a family of two.

John Smith said...

"Have you ever hosted a big holiday meal?" No, but I fantasize about someday having a big party with a big spread of incredible holiday food.

dstoutholcomb said...

I've hosted a large family gathering. Have to be organized and plan ahead. It's not too bad.

denise

Mary Preston said...

Just small family gatherings for me. No dramas.

Jill Broussard said...

The craziest thing that's ever happened for a Holiday meal was that we were actually on schedule and ready to eat early for once. When we went to take the turkey out of the oven, it was only slightly warm. I didn't think that ever really happened to anyone! We wound up cooking it on the bbq and as tradition would have it, once again ate dinner late.

Nina said...

The craziest thing that happened at our event was during Thanksgiving we forgot to check on the Turkey, and let's just say that it was extra crispy!!

StoreyBookLover said...

My mom used to host big family dinners for Thanksgiving. Her 8 siblings and their families would come and it always felt very cramped, but it was so much fun having the family together. My mom spent weeks preparing for that meal and as an adult, I have nothing but respect and appreciation for her efforts all those years ago!

Laurie G said...

Over the years I've hosted many family dinners for 16-20 people. I've also hosted a lot of small dinners for 6-8 people.

I've had several flops: a spinach souffle and an angel food cake didn't rise and dinner rolls which turned out like rocks. I burnt rolls one time too I forgot to set the timer. The worst was when I made a roast beef dinner for my husband's business partners. I made roasted potatoes and I set the glass dish on a burner which I had forgotten to turn off and the Pyrex dish shattered into a zillion glass pieces. No potatoes for that meal. It was super embarrassing!

Linda May said...

I've hosted a Thanksgiving dinner and it can be hectic sometime trying to make sure everything is done at the same time and everyone is seated so the food is nice and hot, sometimes I feel like a chicken without a head running around like crazy, but it's worth it in the end. Thanks for this amazing giveaway.

diannekc said...

I have hosted a couple of large holiday meals. I don't remember any strange things happening.

Dianna said...

I've hosted many family gatherings. The funniest thing that happened was back when my nieces and nephew were visiting. We had a bunch of kids in the house who swam all day. I made pork chops for supper -- baked about 3 sheet pans of pork chops in the oven. Set them on the table and let the kids get started while I tidied up the kitchen a little. By the time the adults came in to eat, the food was GONE! The kids had eaten it ALL!

Elena Y. said...

I have never hosted family meals and also nothing crazy ever happened

bn100 said...

no

Elizabeth G said...

My mother taught Home Ec so she was always the hostess! One year my cousin dropped the sweet potato casserole on the floor. It is a family favorite! She scooped up what could be saved and we carried on!

rubynreba said...

The first time I made stuffing for a turkey it was a disaster and nobody would eat it!

Peggy Russo said...

My family always took turns hosting the big holiday dinners so I've had my turn at all of them. The funniest thing I remember happening was one Thanksgiving when I forgot to put out utensils, my then 2 year old son put his face down to the plate and just started eating his mashed potatoes hands free. My poor sweetheart must've been very hungry.

♡♥♬ Carolsue ♡♥♬ said...

Maybe not the weirdist, but the thing that keeps surfacing year after year. I bought a Cajun Fried Turkey from a fast food restaurant one year and everyone detested it and will never let me forget it.
digicats {at} sbcglobal {dot} net

Kelley B said...

I made Thanksgiving dinner. I got up early to cook the turkey not realizing it wouldn't take all day to cook a 12 pound bird. Needless to say we ate at 10:00 in the morning.

Lynn said...

Lived in NC mountains and it started snowing really heavy about 2 a.m. Had big turkey to cook. My parents and grandparents were at my house. My mom put turkey in oven then. Power went out. We put pot with turkey on freestanding woodstove we used to heat house in living room. Took a while but food cooked perfectly. Husband cooked breakfast in heavy snow on gas grill holding umbrella. Fun and memorable Christmas.

Tracy Wirick said...

I decided one year to prepare a Thanksgiving dinner myself for the family. Unbeknownst to me how much work goes into that! The dumplings were burned and one side dish did not come out well but the rest was pretty good. I decided never to do that again! Lol

Storm992472 said...

One Christmas my family made me sit in a chair while they messed up all my cupboards and drawers. It was killing me and once they let me up I straightened it up right away. Not very interesting but usually we work all Holidays.