In the Red : The Diary of a Recovering Shopaholic, Paperback Book

In the Red : The Diary of a Recovering Shopaholic Paperback

2 out of 5 (2 ratings)


When your debt is more than your share of the mortgage and your partner's threatening to not only leave, but to tell your mother how out of control your spending is, then you know it's time to face reality and take drastic action.

So, for one whole year, Alexis Hall sets out to buy nothing except the bare essentials in a bid to reclaim her life from the retail rollercoaster threatening to pitch her into permanent poverty.

That might not sound too hard a task, but when you owe over GBP30,000 and you're consumed by consumerism, just making it to lunchtime without buying a pair of sensational shoes suddenly becomes a life-altering act. "In the Red" is Alexis' hilarious diary - full of fashion and frustration - as she battles to transform herself from a spending junkie to a scrupulous saver.

You'll soon realize there's a bit of Alexis in all of us!


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Icon Books Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Memoirs
  • ISBN: 9781840468601

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Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.

Review by

I bought this after seeing the author on TV, and thought that it might be inspiring to myself - while I can't say that I have £30k of credit card and loan debts and have a shopping addiction, I do sometimes spend far more than I should, and thought that this might help me with some suggestions and support as to how to curb my spending before it gets out of hand. This book is definitely quite light entertainment. I managed to read it in an afternoon. It's not going to give you lots of saving tips, but as I had hoped, it was definitely inspiring and has given me the motivation to look through my wardrobe and sort out things I no longer need! I really enjoyed her writing style. I'm sure there are many women who can relate to her and her problems, and her way of rationalising every unnecessary spend. I did have a few criticisms; firstly, the amount of typos. I noticed quite a lot in my reading of the book, a lot of them were pretty obvious things, and it doesn't seem to have been proof-read thoroughly. While it's not a real criticism, it did detract from reading it as I felt the urge to circle the mistakes with a red pen! Secondly, it would have been better to know what her income was and how much she was putting towards her debts and how much towards essentials such as food/rent/dog stuff. After all, she did document how much of her debt she had left, but this was hard to put into perspective without other details. I did feel when reading it that there was a lot she could have improved on (such as taking her own lunch into work, instead of spending a fiver in Boots every day, or selling more unused clothing on eBay with better starting prices!), but this was documenting her resolution to not spend, which I felt she did pretty faithfully. It would've been nice to know more about 'her' and details of her life (such as how she and her partner met, or what type of dog she has - which was only said about 3/4 of the way through!) as sometimes it seemed a little impersonal. But overall, it is a light and enjoyable read, that other women (and men!) may also find inspiring when looking through their debts and overflowing wardrobes.

Review by

A shallow piece of work that might work better in fiction than biography. Failed to find sympathy for a woman who puts herself 30 grand in debt because she can't resist the latest piece of overpriced designer wear. Especially when there are no real consequences for her - even at her level of debt. She risked nothing, still had a house to live in, plenty of food, and no real idea what financial difficulty actually is.

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