The Liberation of Alice Love by Abby McDonald
Publication Date: March 2011
Genre: Chick Lit, Contemporary Women's Fiction
(Received for review from Sourcebooks)
Purchase: Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, IndieBound
Abby McDonald on the WEB: Website, Twitter
Synopsis (Book Blurb):
Alice Love keeps her life (and boss, and family) running in perfect order, so when her bank card is declined, she thinks it's just a mistake. Sadly, someone has emptied her bank account, spending her savings on glamorous trips, sexy lingerie, and a to-die-for wardrobe - and leaving Alice with lots of debt. As a dashing fraud investigator helps her unravel the intriguing paper trail, Alice discovers that the thief is closer to home than she ever imagined. What's more, it seems like her alter ego's reckless, extravagant lifestyle is the one Alice should have been leading all along. As the little white lies begin to stack up, how far will Alice go to find the truth? And whose life, exactly, is she fighting for?
Author Abby McDonald brings readers a glimpse into the life of someone who has had their identity stolen. The Liberation of Alice Love is a book that will have readers laughing out loud, as well as applauding Alice as she searches for answers. Why did this happen to her and who did it? McDonald's ability to take a plot idea that doesn't sound all that interesting and turn it into a romantic page-turner is a wonder.
Alice Love has a perfect life. Perfect, but ordinary. As a lawyer in London, Alice is putting away money for a nest egg, she intends to use for a new home. When her credit card is denied she knows it has to be a mistake. Alice soon finds out that her identity has been stolen and the fake-Alice is using all her money to do the things that Alice has always wanted to do, but never took the risk. With glamorous trips and sexy lingerie fake-Alice is leaving a paper trail behind a mile long. Real Alice must become a detective to figure out who did it and why. With the help of a handsome investigator, Alice transforms her life from ordinary to extraordinary!
McDonald really gives the reader a great plot based on a not so great topic: Identity theft. In today's world we hear about identity theft all the time, but I don't think people understand how bad this can really be unless they have experienced it. It is demoralizing and disheartening. I thought McDonald did an excellent job of showing the reader just how much this could affect someone. In Alice's case it changes her life completely. Sure it was a bad thing to happen but in the end it became more than just finding out who did it. It became a journey in which Alice really found out who she wanted to be and what was important to her. I loved real-Alice as a character. She was funny and determined and once she got out of her comfort zone she really started to become a different person. I enjoyed her growth through out the novel.
Alice's alter ego was doing all the things she dreamed about doing herself and I thought it was a stroke of genius for the author to have Alice kind of follow in the thief's footsteps, even to the point of dressing like her and effectively stealing the thief's identity back. Readers will empathize with Alice, but they will enjoy seeing what lengths she goes to find out who did this and why. I found it somewhat hard to understand why this was soooo important to Alice. What was driving her to go to such extremes? In the end though, it was a very fun book. It was exciting and the author's sense of romance was awesome. Alice finds not only her true self, but love as well and that's what makes this book so good. She gets her happy ending, but it's totally not what the reader expects when they pick up this book. McDonald surprised me with this one and it was a pleasure to read.
I recommend this one to anyone who loves a good romance or a good chick lit read. It's a great weekend or beach read and it's very current and refreshing. A really different sort of book than most people would expect. Abby McDonald makes it clear that not only can she write great YA novels, but her adult fiction is just as potent and interesting.
The Liberation of Alice Love is available NOW from your favorite bookseller.
I'm giving this one 4 out of 5 apples from my book bag!
Abby McDonald grew up in Sussex, England and studied politics and philosophy at Oxford University. She began writing in college, completing her first novel before graduating to work as a music journalist and receptionist extraordinaire. She is now a fulltime novelist and screenwriter. Her first novel, The Popularity Rules was a Glamour "must read" and was dubbed "brilliantly written, full of humor, heartbreak and attitude." She is also the author of young adult novels Sophomore Switch, Boys, Bears and a Serious Pair of Hiking Boots, and The Anti-Prom. She currently lives in Los Angeles, California.