Jane Austen found her sister Cassandra a locket. Joan Didion bought nail enamel and a toaster on impulse. Karyn Bosnak charged $20,000 on credit cards – and wild child Elizabeth Wurtzel got caught shoplifting. George Eliot, on the other hand, hated shopping. Those are the true stories, but there are hundreds of fictional shoppers: The Girl with the Pearl Earring turned up her nose at some stale meat; Tom Ripley lusted after Venetian leather goods, while Jane Eyre cringed at Mr Rochester’s pre-wedding excess. This is the first anthology to feature writing about shopping by women throughout history. Buy it.