Shoe Addicts Anonymous
first hardcover novel by Beth Harbison leaves no doubt that she is
a practiced writer and a keen observer of the world around her.
SHOE ADDICTS ANONYMOUS is a delightful read that would bring the
beach into a snowstorm if you don't happen to read it until winter.
She deftly introduces each of the main characters in their own
vignettes so that the reader can identify them, and with them, as
the story progresses. I love it when I don't have to stop and
wonder who's who.
These unique and wonderful women are victims of a genetic tendency
that causes them to obsess (in this case, over shoes mainly). They
are your friends, your relatives and, yes, you yourself. While
three of them are floundering in their addiction, Lorna R. --- with
$30,000 in credit card debt, a past due electric bill of $800 and
her car about to be repossessed --- wisely admits she needs help.
The debt-ridden eBay addict takes a proactive position and seeks
help from a credit counselor. She also places a blurb on "Greg's
List" inviting other women, specifically size 7 1/2 shoe addicts,
to join her on Tuesday evenings to swap shoes, stories and
Various people respond to the ad, including a transvestite who
swore he was willing to squeeze his size-11 foot into a 7 1/2
Delman. But in the end there were just four of them --- each with
an empty spot in her soul that she tried to fill with all sorts of
material things, especially shoes, each ready to make a change that
would only be possible with support from those who understood what
they were going through. The principles of Alcoholics Anonymous
prevail, and group dynamics once again provide help for those who
can't help themselves!
SHOE ADDICTS ANONYMOUS is like a road trip that provides as much
pleasure as the destination itself. Beth Harbison has a comedic
style that appeals to our subtle side. For example, when Lorna is
at the bank trying to get her overdraft charges waived, the banker
reminds her of the terms to which she agreed. She says, "Stop
blaming everything on some stupid terms I agreed to a thousand
years ago. You know darn well those papers contain a million words
a page in negative ten point Ariel sans readability font." Amen,
Whether you have a closet full of Ferragamos and Miu Muis or simply
can't pass by a Famous Footwear without buying a new pair of
sneakers, you'll love SHOE ADDICTS ANONYMOUS and be looking forward
to Harbison's next book.
Shoe Addicts Anonymous
- Publication Date: April 1, 2008
- Genres: Fiction
- Paperback: 352 pages
- Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
- ISBN-10: 0312348231
- ISBN-13: 9780312348236