“The thing about brains, which you might not know, is they’re not just one ball of jelly. They’re all divided into bits, and some bits are great and some are just a waste of space. In my humble opinion.”
Finding Audrey is my first Sophie Kinsella book and it has definitely left me keen to read more of her work. In this book our main character, Audrey, suffers from anxiety. Following a traumatic experience, Audrey is left unable to leave the house and finds it difficult to remove her dark glasses even at home. When her brother invites Linus round, they start exchanging notes and with his help Audrey has a new found courage to leave the house, to talk to people and to heal.
These days mental illness is increasingly being discussed online, in real life and, of course, in books. I always find it reassuring to pick up a book which involves some form of mental illness because it is a diverse topic and it can be talked about and dealt with in a variety of ways. I was really happy with how Kinsella dealt with the topic and portrayed Audrey. While some characters may not have been the most aware and understanding of Audrey’s anxiety, it demonstrates how misunderstood a lot of people are about the topic and helps convey different viewpoints.
In this book I absolutely loved so many of the characters. Audrey was a good narrator; she was mature and clever and observant. Linus was a lovely character and he was so sweet too, I especially loved the scene with the ice cream! I also really enjoyed the different members of Audrey’s family with their own distinct personalities and opinions.
One thing I have conflicting thoughts about with this book is the fact that we never find out exactly what happened with Audrey at her old school and with those other girls. I like this because while I was reading it wasn’t something that particularly bothered me. I was very interested to know, but part of the message within the book is about not living in the past, so I liked that the decision not to tell us reinforces this message.
However, I cannot help but be nosy! I suppose this is more my own personal issue rather than a problem of the book. Either way, when I read a book I love grasping at all the details of the main character’s life that I can, but I won’t hold this against the book.
Overall, I found this book to be rather enjoyable and I really liked it. I rate this book 4/5 and certainly recommend it to young adults, lovers of contemporaries and books about mental illness with some romance thrown in.
Have you read Finding Audrey? What were your thoughts?