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The Party Crasher, by Sophie Kinsella (audiobook read by Fiona Hardingham)

I LOVE Sophie Kinsella but this is the first time I have tried her audiobooks… brilliant!
Effie’s parents suddenly split up and her dad decides to sell the family home to move abroad with his new love Krista. Effie has a fraught relationship with her dad and Krista, so she is not invited when they plan a party to say goodbye to the house. She is desperate to retrieve her precious Russian dolls so sneaks into the party to get them…
The Party Crasher is a humorous family drama with a splash of romance.
Effie was heartbroken when her parents split up. She thought they had the perfect relationship and suspects that her dad cheated with his new flame Krista. Krista sends invites to family and friends for a ‘house-cooling’ party to say goodbye to the family home. But Effie isn’t invited until she mentions popping by to get her dolls, and she responds by declining the forced invitation. Effie knows every nook and cranny of the house so she is able to sneak in. She does make contact with her brother and sister which reveals secrets that change her opinions. She also reunites with her old flame and finds her heart still belongs to him.
Some of the events are slightly madcap to add to the humour but the emotion of this book shines through. I am a very sentimental person so completely identified with Effie as she faces change with trepidation, even horror and grief.
I loved Effie’s character. She is vulnerable, impulsive and so easy to like as she faces the future and has to rethink her understanding of her family and experiences. Her interactions and relationships with others are a joy. I felt that the audio narration suited the book perfectly, bringing all of the characters to life but especially Effie.
The Party Crasher is a wonderful book about the humour and love in families that can get lost as changes happen.
The Party Crasher book cover
The Party Crasher book blurb
It’s been over two years since Effie’s beloved parents got divorced, destroying the image of the happy, loving childhood she thought she had. Since then, she’s become estranged from her father and embarked on a feud with his hot (and much younger) girlfriend, Krista. And now, more earth-shattering news: Greenoaks, the rambling Victorian country house Effie called home her whole life, has been sold.
When Krista decides to throw a grand “house cooling” party, Effie is originally left off the guest list–and then receives a last-minute “anti-invitation” (maybe it’s because she called Krista a gold-digger, but Krista totally deserved it, and it was mostly a joke anyway). Effie declines, but then remembers a beloved childhood treasure is still hidden in the house. Her only chance to retrieve it is to break into Greenoaks while everyone is busy celebrating. As Effie sneaks around the house, hiding under tables and peeping through trapdoors, she realizes the secrets Greenoaks holds aren’t just in the dusty passageways and hidden attics she grew up exploring. Watching how her sister, brother, and dad behave when they think no one is looking, Effie overhears conversations, makes discoveries, and begins to see her family in a new light. Then she runs into Joe–the love of her life, who long ago broke her heart, and who’s still as handsome and funny as ever–and even more truths emerge.
But will Effie act on these revelations? Will she stay hidden or step out into the party and take her place with her family? And truthfully, what did she really come back to Greenoaks for? Over the course of one blowout party, Effie realizes that she must be honest with herself and confront her past before she’ll ever be able to face her future.

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