I’ve Got Your Number – Sophie Kinsella

“A couple of glasses of bubbly with the girls at a charity do and Poppy’s life has gone into meltdown. Not only has she lost her engagement ring, but in the panic that followed, she’s lost her phone too. As she paces shakily round the hotel foyer she spots an abandoned phone in a bin. Finders keepers! Now she can leave a number with the hotel staff. It was meant to be! Except the phone’s owner, businessman Sam Roxton, doesn’t agree. He wants his phone back, and doesn’t appreciate Poppy reading all his messages and wading into his personal life. As Poppy juggles wedding preparations, phone messages and hiding her left hand from Magnus and his parents, can things get any more tangled?”

I’m a big fan of Sophie Kinsella (Mini Shopaholic and and The Undomestic Goddess being my favourites) and I was relieved to see that I’ve Got Your Number was true to her usual style – funny and down to earth, with relatable characters. Sophie’s heroines are typically a little dippy and scatterbrained but loveable, and Poppy Wyatt is no different. She’s just got engaged to Magnus, a foppish charmer with a scarily intelligent family. Everything seems perfect, until she loses her scarily expensive engagement ring at a hotel and has no means of being contacted when a mugger steals her phone. She finds one in a bin – “finders keepers!” – but little does she know that it belongs to the PA of Sam Roxton.

He is hell bent on getting his phone back, but it’s her only lifeline to the ring, and so Poppy bargains with him to keep it, agreeing to be his stand-in PA until the ring is tracked down. As she starts forwarding on his correspondence, she can’t help but have a little look, and is surprised by Sam’s blunt and impersonal communication skills. Boundaries are crossed as Poppy starts emailing and acting on Sam’s behalf. She thinks he should spend more time and praise on his colleagues, whilst Sam is frustrated by her lack of assertiveness.

Poppy’s relationship with Magnus and his academic family dwindles as she tries and fails to find common ground. At the same time, she is becoming more and more intrigued by Sam, whose initial curt and professional manner towards her is thawing. When her relationship with Magnus hits a bump in the road, she finds herself taking a course of action she never could have imagined. And when Sam’s company is being threatened by an underhanded set-up, it is Poppy who unexpectedly comes to the rescue.

Kinsella weaves her usual magic with I’ve Got Your Number. It’s witty, with sparkling dialogue and a little more complex than usual, which I really liked. The deviation from her typical style presents itself in the form of footnotes – amusing little add-ons which makes Poppy’s character a lot more genuine and in-depth. Sometimes I found them a little unnecessary and distracting (like watching a foreign language film and only reading the subtitles) and I found myself missing some of the numbers and working my way back to find them. Nevertheless, they made for an original and quirky feature.

I’ve Got Your Number has quickly risen up to be one of my favourite Kinsella books and one I know I’ll re-read many times when I’m in need of a funny, feel-good fix.

Many thanks to Transworld for the review copy.

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