It is not very often that I open a parcel containing a book and immediately burst out laughing (joyfully, I may add,) but that is exactly what happened when I opened the packaging containing this surprising story of fame, youth and excess. At that point, I had yet to discover the tumblr on which the book is based so it was a bit of a surprise to discover a book of that title, and with a cover that depicts a line of cocaine on a US $100 bill. Anyway, Rich Kids of Instagram is a fairly lightweight but amusing story that depicts the intersecting lives of several young people, all of whom have an excessive amount of wealth and very few of whom have any kind of conscience whatsoever. Or much of a grip on reality, in some cases. The descriptions of some of the parties, homes and a very unusual kitten-themed restaurant are extremely amusing, as is a certain notable characters revenge on the others at the very end. This one is difficult to describe in detail as the plot is very thin in places and to say too much about what happens may lead to giving away clues to what was for me, a clever and satisfying ending. I quite liked the enigma that is Todd Evergreen, though many of his peers were quite annoying and difficult to like (which is, I suspect, that is the point). Or to put it another way, every character in the book is an arsehole, but that is kind of what makes it fun. You don't want to be these people. You want to laugh at them.
If you get a chance, I also highly recommend visiting the tumblr and having a good laugh at the world of material excess--the site is made up of a selection of indulgent pictures sourced from various places around the web. If you don't have time for that, this piece in the Daily Mail is a smaller, though still delicious taste.
I suspect that Rich Kids of Instagram is not a book that is going to please a wide variety of readers, but I highly recommend it to anyone looking for something lightweight, amusing and a little bit different.
Thank you to Simon and Schuster Australia for my review copy.