Book Review- Handbags and Gladrags

Maggie AldersonHandbags and Gladrags (2004)

Handbags and Gladrags

Emily Pointer is a fashion stylist who leads a celebrity lifestyle. From fashion shows in Milan to designer clothes and an enviable husband, Emily seems to have it all. But underneath all the glamour and superficiality, she struggles with some deep dark secrets.

Then one night she meets hunky the rugged Australian, Miles and their one night fling becomes a global affair. Emily’s breezy approach to her affair eventually catches up with her and she is forced to make some very big decisions.

To be honest, I found it really difficult to connect with Emily. I didn’t really understand why she started the affair, of course her early childhood experiences were very influential in her detached relationships but I didn’t feel like I really got to know her. Miles was a charming character and Ollie seemed to be at arms length throughout the story also, perhaps that’s a reflection of his relationship with Emily, but it left me feeling a little underwhelmed. There didn’t seem to be enough structure to the story and the ending was all a bit rushed, despite it being quite a long read. I really enjoyed Maggie’s story ‘Cents and Sensibility’ and I guess I was somewhat disappointed when I read this book.

On the other hand, the author is quite well acquainted with the fashion world and provides an insiders view which may draw in any fashion enthusiasts. Sadly, I am not one of them.

 Nevertheless, I have enjoyed Alderson’s books before so perhaps I will try another story and see if she lives up to my expectations next time.


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