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Friday, 20 April, 2001, 14:09 GMT 15:09 UK
Britney's book hits US stores
Britney Spears
Britney Spears wrote the novel with her mother
Copies of Britney Spears's first novel A Mother's Gift have gone on sale in the US - with a mixed reaction from readers.

Pop star Spears, 19, has written the novel with her mother Lynne Spears. It tells the story of Holly Faye Lovell's rise from rags to riches.

But reviews collated by online bookseller Amazon.com suggest that not all readers have been too impressed.

A Mother's Gift is classed as a children's book and is due to hit the shelves in the UK in May.

A Mother's Gift
A Mother's Gift is a book for children

Whatever its literary merits, it is sure to be snapped up by eager Britney fans.

The novel is Spears's second foray into the literary world as she wrote her autobiography at the age of 18.

That book, Heart to Heart, was a best-seller and her publishers both sides of the Atlantic are hoping for more of the same from this new venture.

The US rights were bought by Random House in December for 700,000. British publisher Boxtree paid 500,000 for the UK rights.

But one reader in the US told Amazon that she had felt "unsatisfied" after reading it.

"The ending was indeed a bit of a surprise but didn't really add much to the book.

"The whole story line is already so cotton-candy sweet, dripping with pure sugar that it's enough to make you ill.

"The ending only added to the sweetness and it just made me groan."

But another was full of explosive praise: "Salman Rushdie, move over, Britney Spears is here and she is the greatest writer EVA!!!"

There was even one reader who found surprising depths in the book.

"Spears thematically depicts the Marxian-Existential conflict in her moving work, and she does so with characteristic artistic ingenuity."

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