Heart and Sole: The Shoes of My Life
Eldershaw is mad for shoes. In this light-hearted memoir, the Australian native and shoe diva guides readers on a tour through her notable footwear, from the first T-straps she teetered in as a toddler to the favorite gold slides and versatile black leather pumps of adulthood. A magazine writer and illustrator, she playfully begins by laying out her""shoe lineage"": her main influences were her staid mother, who had two-toned oxfords in every color scheme, and her flamboyant aunt, who had a penchant for stilettos. Eldershaw moves through pivotal go-go boots, platform shoes and career heels, finally culminating in a middle-age embrace of sneakers. Joining her in the feverish quest for the perfect pair is a gang of well-heeled""Imeldas,"" her friendly shoe fanatics named for the""patron saint of footwear, Imelda Marcos."" When Eldershaw sticks to her life and comic advice, the book is fun. She asks in half jest, ""Did you know this morning, before seeing these hot-pink stilettos, that they were all it took to make your life meaningful and complete?"" Sometimes, though, her familiar observations and gender stereotyping sound flat and shallow (""Shoes are not mere accessories. Shoes are the meaning of life"" or ""Men buy, women shop""). Still, the author's self-deprecating stories about her""footwear follies"" keep this book from being just a cliched celebration of shoes. Scattered throughout are a number of shoe shopping and care tips as well as the author's own cartoon drawings. 64 four-color illustrations.