Following the tremendous success of her Shopaholic series, author Sophie Kinsella (whose real name is Madeline Wickham) returned in December of 2003 with Can You Keep a Secret?, the tale of Emma Corrigan, an aspiring marketing executive.
At first, Emma's life appears to be wonderful. She is gainfully employed by Panther Cola, where she hopes to earn a promotion, and she has a lovely boyfriend. However, on an especially rocky flight returning home from a not-so-great business meeting in Glasgow, Emma feels compelled to share her darkest secrets with the stranger sitting beside her. Emma spares no details. She reveals how and to whom she lost her virginity, her true feelings about her current boyfriend, and how she relentlessly plays hapless jokes on her colleagues (such as watering her coworker's plant with orange juice daily). She also mentions that her Kate Spade bag is a fake, that she lies about her weight, that her G-string is really uncomfortable, and that she has no idea what NATO is. When she disembarks from the plane, Emma is relieved that not only is the flight over but that she has gotten a few things off her chest.
The next morning, Emma reports to work and learns that her mid-air confidant was none other than Jack Harper, the American CEO of Panther Cola. She is mortified. To make matters worse, Jack decides to use Emma's confessions to launch a new ad campaign for Panther. Emma's friends, Lissy and Jemima, are determined to counsel her through this latest embarrassment. And they eventually learn that Jack has a few secrets of his own that may just come back to haunt him. Nevertheless, Emma and Jack begin to date, and a romance brews. In the end, Emma and Jack find happiness in spite of their tumultuous beginning.
Kinsella's best seller Confessions of a Shopaholic was made into a major motion picture in 2009 starring Isla Fisher. Another Kinsella novel, The Undomestic Goddess, is currently in development and is slated to appear in theaters in 2011. Paramount Pictures has secured the rights to Can You Keep a Secret? and actress Kate Hudson is rumored to star in the film.