This was such a fun book! I honestly didn't expect any less from Sophie Kinsella but I was a bit hesitant because of two reasons, one being that this is her first try at writing middle grade books, and another being that I never really enjoy middle grade books. The first reason is that I really hoped Kinsella's humor will translate through such a young protagonist (and oh boy, did it ever!) and the other is that I often find MG characters too immature for my taste, but Kinsella's magic did it again and totally made this book and character relatable, fun, and all with an important message delivered to the readers.
Anxiety disorders are actually more common than what we think. Unfortunately many people aren't aware of the actual clinical term and brush it off as a personality defect. Mental and psychological illnesses are unfortunately treated as a second class citizen in relation to physical illnesses. I really applaud and admire Kinsella for picking such an important topic and simplifying it and relating it to young teens. Audrey went through a traumatic event in her school that caused her to develop severe anxiety. She wears sunglasses at all times and now never leaves the house (she is in the middle of transferring to another school).
The story isn't just Audrey's story, but it is her whole family's story. One thing Kinsella did brilliantly is the family dynamic and relationship. Audrey's older and younger brothers will remind you of your own siblings. Her mother worries constantly and her dad backs her up in the parenting department just to keep the peace. We all have the bad cop good cop labels for our parents right? I just liked how relatable the whole family dynamic was. Also, A Kinsella book isn't one if it isn't laugh out loud funny, which Finding Audrey totally is. Her brother plays an online RPG game that he's preparing with his friends to enter a global tournament.. and that requires countless hours of playing, something that has turned red flags for their mom... and commence the crazy acts, from finding inventive ways to get around the ban from playing, to restoring to the most extreme actions, like his mom throwing a €1,100 laptop out the window to finally get her son's attention (This isn't the spoiler, the book opens up with this exact scene). If I could choose one word to describe Finding Audrey, it would be fun. I can't wait for Sophie Kinsella to venture more into the non adult world (YA book next? please?), as well as more adult books. Basically I will read anything Sophie Kinsella writes. I definitely recommend it to all Sophie Kinsella fans as well as readers who want to try her writing but aren't interested (yet) in her adult books.