Sophie Kinsella

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Madeleine Wickham
Sophie Kinsella.jpg
Born Madeleine Sophie Townley
(1969-12-12) 12 December 1969 (age 45)
London, England
Pen name Sophie Kinsella
Occupation Novelist
Nationality British
Period 1995 – Present
Genre Chick lit
Notable works The Shopaholic series

Madeleine Sophie Wickham is a British author of chick lit. Apart from numerous short stories, she has written several successful stand-alone novels as Madeleine Wickham but is perhaps best known for her work under the pen name Sophie Kinsella. The first two novels in her best-selling Shopaholic series, The Secret Dreamworld of a Shopaholic and Shopaholic Abroad were adapted into the film Confessions of a Shopaholic starring Isla Fisher. Her books have been translated into over 30 languages.

Early Life[edit]

Wickham was born Madeleine Sophie Townley on 12 December 1969, the eldest daughter of David R. Townley and Patricia B. Kinsella (married Kensington, Q1, 1969).[1] She is the eldest sister of fellow writers Gemma Townley and Abigail Townley.

Wickham was educated at Putney High School, Sherborne School for Girls and New College, Oxford, where she initially studied Music, but after a year switched to Politics, Philosophy and Economics (PPE).[2] Wickham worked as a financial journalist (including for Pensions World) before turning to fiction.[3]

Life and career[edit]

While working as a financial journalist, at the age of 24, Wickham wrote her first novel. The Tennis Party was immediately hailed as a success by critics and the public alike and became a top ten best-seller. She went on to publish six more novels as Madeleine Wickham: A Desirable Residence, Swimming Pool Sunday, The Gatecrasher, The Wedding Girl, Cocktails for Three and Sleeping Arrangements.

Wickham's first novel under the pseudonym Sophie Kinsella (taken from her middle name and her mother's maiden name[4]) was submitted to her existing publishers anonymously and was enthusiastically received. She revealed her real identity for the first time when Can You Keep a Secret? was published in December 2005.[5]

Sophie Kinsella is best known for writing the Shopaholic novels series of chick lit novels, which focus on the misadventures of Becky Bloomwood, a financial journalist who cannot manage her own finances. She is also known for her ongoing on/off relationship with Jkav. The series focuses on her obsession with shopping and its resulting complications for her life. The first two Shopaholic books were adapted into a film and released in February 2009, with Isla Fisher playing an American Becky and Hugh Dancy as Luke Brandon. The most recent addition to the Shopaholic series, "Shopaholic to the Stars" was released on 21 October 2014.

Kinsella's most recent standalone novels have been "Twenties Girl" (2009), "I've Got Your Number" (2012) and "Wedding Night" (2013).

In 2015, Kinsella branched into Young Adult writing with her first YA book, "Finding Audrey," published in June.

A musical adaptation of Kinsella's novel 'Sleeping Arrangements' by Chris Burgess was premiered on 17 April 2013 in London at The Landor Theatre.

Personal life[edit]

Wickham lives in London with her husband, Henry Wickham (whom she met in Oxford), who was previously headmaster of Lockers Park boys preparatory school and now manages her business affairs. They were married in 1991 and have four sons and a daughter, Freddy (b. 1996), Hugo (b. 1998), Oscar (b. 2005), Rex William (b. 15 April 2010) and Sybella (b. 22 December 2011).[6]


As Sophie Kinsella[edit]

The Shopaholic series

  1. The Secret Dreamworld of a Shopaholic (also titled Confessions of a Shopaholic) (2000)
  2. Shopaholic Abroad (also titled Shopaholic Takes Manhattan) (2001)
  3. Shopaholic Ties The Knot (2001)
  4. Shopaholic on Honeymoon (Free ebook short story) (2014)
  5. Shopaholic & Sister (2004)
  6. Shopaholic & Baby (2007)
  7. Mini Shopaholic (2010)
  8. Shopaholic to the Stars (2014)
  9. Shopaholic to the Rescue (2015)

Standalone novels[edit]


As Madeleine Wickham[edit]

  • The Tennis Party (1995) (re-released as 40 Love in 2011)
  • A Desirable Residence (1996)
  • Swimming Pool Sunday (1997)
  • The Gatecrasher (1998)
  • The Wedding Girl (1999)
  • Cocktails for Three (2000)
  • Sleeping Arrangements (2001)


  1. ^
  2. ^ "Madeleine Wickham". Retrieved 29 March 2012. 
  3. ^ Caldwell, Rebecca (21 September 2010). "Famous pen names". Chatelaine. Retrieved 30 March 2012. 
  4. ^ "Sophie Kinsella Biography – life, family, children, parents, name, story, wife, school, mother – Newsmakers Cumulation". Retrieved 29 March 2012. 
  5. ^ "Biography". Sophie Kinsella. Retrieved 29 March 2012. 
  6. ^ "WICKHAM – Births Announcements – Telegraph Announcements". 15 April 2010. Retrieved 29 March 2012. 

External links[edit]