Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Save Karyn, a delightful read :)

I was at a book sale a few months back and saw this book called “Save Karyn: A True-Life Shopaholics’s Journey to Debt and Back” by Karyn Bosnak (mine was the UK version). Since it was a second-hand paperback, it set me back a mere $2.

Now, I gotta admit I’m an impulsive buyer when it comes to clothes, shoes and bags – especially if it’s like love at first sight – but when it comes to books, I’m a bit more cautious. I mean, c’mon, literature is like an important thing and it does NOT come in cheap packages :)

So as what any chick-lit-fan would do, I scanned the back to make sure it would be worth the read (I also bought another book at the same sale, “Good Girls” by Laura Ruby, trust me, the only time I would ever read that book again was if I was held at gun-point in an attic of a decrepit warehouse in the middle of nowhere and the only chance I have of survival was if I read it). Going back, at the synopsis was a mention of www.savekaryn.com, a website I was sure I have heard of in one of the random episodes of Oprah, so I decided for 2bucks, it might not be all that bad.

Now, I didn’t read it as soon as I bought it nor did I start skimming through it when I got home. It’s not one of those, “I fell instantly in love with it upon reading the first paragraph of the first chapter”. Since my boyfriend and I were members at probably all the major bookstores in the country, I still had a few more purchases that I had yet to break into. So, I brushed Karyn aside to make way to my Old English Era obsession (Oh, the dear Philippa Gregory and the wonderful Margaret George).

A couple of months later – when I ran out of mint fresh books – I decided “Save Karyn” would be my next “take a break” (you see, I read a lot of heavy literature, I just somehow have an unexplainable passion for it, so once in every two, I take a break by reading a light-hearted chick lit selection).

It took a while before I was grabbed by the story. I mean, the story wasn’t all that fresh. She was a woman who had everything going for her; an apartment in New York that was a couple of blocks away from Bloomingdale’s and Saks Fifth, a great producer job on a brand new TV talk show, dating a guy who was really hot and had a steady-income, and shopping for big-time brands which some I can barely pronounce. This is all a been-there-done-that but what makes it different is that it is a memoir, a true story. Though, I don’t know if the author made a few things up to make it funnier (Karyn, I hope not).

Basically, her perfect life escalates after much disregard on her part when she adds up one too many purchases on her credit card (which happens to the best of us, let’s not judge) and was out of job after 9/11 that bought her to a debt of a staggering amount of $20,000/+-. She loses contact with hot-banker-boy-toy and moves to Brooklyn as she can no longer afford paying her ridiculous Manhattan rent.

And so her journey begins when she sets up a website asking people for money to help her pay off her debts. You would think no one would be stupid enough to actually give her cash but in matter of 20 weeks of donations and ebay sales, she was able to pay off her debt! Fancy that!

Now, people, it may seem like a good idea and some of you might want to try it out. But it doesn’t work as effectively as it used to anymore. Remember, she made her site in 2002 and published her book in 2003 so by now everyone has made their own websites asking for money and most have no success at all. There is even a term for it “internet begging” which I only found out about two months ago! So if you’re thinking about it, I advise you otherwise, but I’m not the smartest person so don’t take my word for it 100%.

What I do advise, though, is get a copy of the book. It is such a fun read, Karyn is witty, hilarious and the way she tells her story makes you feel for her. She didn’t just go out there and expect everyone to pitch in to pay her debt while she lives a carefree lifestyle – she actually made an effort to contribute what she can and make a stab on drinking Brita water (God bless her). But ultimately, she entertained so many readers with her antics posted on savekaryn.com and inspired a whole lot others in various ways.

Even if I don’t know her, I feel like I do and I completely relate to her (I do have a lump sum slowly being cleared on my credit cards, too). Visit her website, I’m sure any shopaholic as well as career-challenged individual would enjoy one way or another.

No comments:

Post a Comment