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Small Admissions

de Amy Poeppel

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2761797,909 (3.72)9
Fiction. Literature. Humor (Fiction.) Despite her innate ambition and Summa Cum Laude smarts, Kate Pearson has turned into a major slacker. After being dumped by her handsome, French "almost fiance," she abandons her grad school plans and spends her days lolling on the couch, leaving her apartment only when a dog-walking gig demands it. Her friends don't know what to do other than pass tissues and hope for a comeback, while her practical sister, Angela, pushes every remedy she can think of, from trapeze class to therapy to job interviews. For reasons no one (least of all Kate) understands, she manages to land a job in the admissions department at the prestigious Hudson Day School. In her new position, Kate learns there's no time for self-pity during the height of the admissions season. Meanwhile, Kate's sister and friends find themselves keeping secrets, hiding boyfriends, dropping bombshells, and fighting each other on how to keep Kate on her feet. On top of it all, her cranky, oddly charming, and irritatingly handsome neighbor is more than he seems. Through every dishy, page-turning twist, it seems that one person's happiness leads to another's misfortune, and suddenly everyone, including Kate, is looking for a way to turn rejection on its head, using any means necessary-including the truly unexpected.… (mais)
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Mostrando 1-5 de 17 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
Hysterical. Smart. A welcome diversion. Perfect for the summer or if you're looking for something light. ( )
  jj24 | May 27, 2024 |
This was a well written witty book with some characters I liked yet I didn’t if that makes sense. It was definitely a page turner which intrigued me. ( )
  TheReadingShed001 | Mar 1, 2023 |
This was a well written witty book with some characters I liked yet I didn’t if that makes sense. It was definitely a page turner which intrigued me. ( )
  TheReadingShed01 | Feb 25, 2023 |
Small Admissions. Amy Poeppel. 2016. Kate loses it when she is dropped by her French boy friend Robert, drops out of grad school, and spends the year on a sofa moping. Thanks to her sister she gets a job in the admissions department of a spiffy private school in NY City. Kate interviews prospective students and their aggressive parents. She gradually realizes that the relationship with Robert was a mistake begins to come into her own as a person. There is not much to this book even though the reviewers found it hilarious. The only laugh-out loud parts were the descriptions of Kate’s parents who are college professors in the social sciences. She really hit the nail on the head, so much so that it almost worth reading the book just for that. ( )
  judithrs | Feb 23, 2023 |
Kate is the child of flighty academics, all set to go off and get her PhD and be part of academia herself (or maybe she'd already gotten her PhD? I wasn't paying close enough attention). She enjoys her research and lab work...and then she meets a handsome French guy named Robert, forgets all her plans and goals in favor of her "almost fiance", and is completely wrecked when he dumps her. She falls into a deep depression and can barely function. Her friends and sister want to help her out of her funk but have different ways of going about it. Chloe, Kate's friend and Robert's cousin (who feels partly responsible for the way Robert wrecked her), sets up a fake dating profile for Kate and goes on dates on her behalf, trying to find the perfect guy for her. Angela, Kate's control freak sister, helps set her up with a place to live, meals, and a dog walking job. If I remember right, she also gets her a job interview for a position in the admissions department of Hudson Day School. Vicki, Kate's elegant and high-powered friend...does something to help, but I can't remember what. Mostly I remember her agreeing to meet with Robert, dressed all sexy while telling herself that she was doing something good for Kate.

This is one of the books I got in a blind bag at Book Bonanza 2019 (I think the bag was labeled "comedy"). This is technically a DNF. I read up to page 160, spending most of that time hating the characters, and then I followed some advice I was given and skipped to the last 50 pages and read those. I missed out on some character relationships (Kate ended up with the guy I was expecting her to end up with, but I didn't see any of their on-page relationship), certain characters apparently took a turn for the likeable (Kate appeared to have become less frustrating), and some big events happened, I didn't feel like I missed enough to go back to page 161 and give the rest of the book another go.

The way the story was told was confusing. It wasn't linear - scenes from the past were mixed in with scenes from the present, and sometimes the progression of time wasn't clear. There were also italicized portions from Chloe's POV and emails from other characters mixed in. Some of this was done, I think, to mask certain information from the reader, but that doesn't negate the fact that the results were a little confusing.

Kate's relationships with Chloe, Vicki, and Angela made me think of a Nora Roberts novel gone wrong. Chloe and Angela clearly wanted to be supportive but came on way too strong (even considering that's potentially what Kate needed, since her depression was bad enough that she had zero desire to take care of herself). Vicki told herself she was being supportive but was actually just awful. I'm not sorry at all that I missed out on her relationship developments with Robert.

I have no idea why Kate was offered the admissions job at Hudson Day School. Maybe it was one of the revelations in the 150 or so pages I skipped. She showed up to her interview completely unprepared and then proceeded to say everything that entered her head, including some things that came across as borderline offensive. She had zero experience working in schools and zero admissions experience. She didn't actually do any research on those topics until after she was offered the job. It felt like some kind of "white woman failing up" storyline, and it really bothered me.

Based on the last 50 pages, yes, at some point Kate became extremely good at her job and did her best to help the more sympathetic characters. I'm sure her relationship with the guy she ended up with was cute (but definitely not the point of the book). It sounded like some of the ways she reacted to Robert (both when she was in a relationship with him and after he dumped her) were due to unrelated things she was working through that she hadn't told anyone else in her life about. That vaguely interested me, but again, not enough for me to go back and reattempt the 150 pages I skipped.

I don't generally rate DNFs, but at around page 160, my gut was going with 2 stars. It didn't necessarily seem like a bad book, but I hated most of the characters too much to want to rate it higher.
  Familiar_Diversions | Jun 5, 2021 |
Mostrando 1-5 de 17 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
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Fiction. Literature. Humor (Fiction.) Despite her innate ambition and Summa Cum Laude smarts, Kate Pearson has turned into a major slacker. After being dumped by her handsome, French "almost fiance," she abandons her grad school plans and spends her days lolling on the couch, leaving her apartment only when a dog-walking gig demands it. Her friends don't know what to do other than pass tissues and hope for a comeback, while her practical sister, Angela, pushes every remedy she can think of, from trapeze class to therapy to job interviews. For reasons no one (least of all Kate) understands, she manages to land a job in the admissions department at the prestigious Hudson Day School. In her new position, Kate learns there's no time for self-pity during the height of the admissions season. Meanwhile, Kate's sister and friends find themselves keeping secrets, hiding boyfriends, dropping bombshells, and fighting each other on how to keep Kate on her feet. On top of it all, her cranky, oddly charming, and irritatingly handsome neighbor is more than he seems. Through every dishy, page-turning twist, it seems that one person's happiness leads to another's misfortune, and suddenly everyone, including Kate, is looking for a way to turn rejection on its head, using any means necessary-including the truly unexpected.

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