Title: Small Admissions
Author: Amy Poeppel
Goodreads Score: 3.71
Summary: When ambitious grad student Kate Pearson’s handsome French “almost fiancé” ditches her, she definitely does not roll with the punches, despite the best efforts of family and friends. It seems that nothing will get Kate out of pajamas and back into the world.
Miraculously, one cringe-worthy job interview leads to a position in the admissions department at the revered Hudson Day School. Kate’s instantly thrown into a highly competitive and occasionally absurd culture, where she interviews all types of children: suitable, wildly unsuitable, charming, loathsome, ingratiating, or spoiled beyond all measure. And then there are the Park Avenue parents who refuse to take no for an answer.
As Kate begins to learn there’s no room for self-pity or nonsense during the height of admissions season or life itself, her sister and friends find themselves keeping secrets, dropping bombshells, and arguing with each other about how to keep Kate on her feet. Meanwhile, Kate seems to be doing very nicely, thank you, and is even beginning to find out that her broken heart is very much on the mend.
The Bloom (pros): Much of this novel unfolds through emails and interviews with both parents and prospective students to Hudson, and they are just as snooty and dripping with condescension as you would hope. There are families you root for, others you love to hate and (most importantly) a protagonist you will love. It’s also refreshing to find a chick lit read that isn’t centered around a girl finding her soul mate, but rather focusing on herself.
The Thorns (cons): While I loved the core storyline surrounding Kate & her new gig, some of the supporting players were forgettable. While I enjoyed the snarky sister Angela and hand-wringing BFF Chloe, Kate’s old college roommate and snooty friend Victoria left a lot to be desired. I almost didn’t care about Victoria’s secret, despite the implications for our main character.
The Bottom Line: Remember in August, when you would get the list of school supplies that you needed to purchase for the first day back – 3 highlighters, pencils, perhaps a trapper keeper? Be still my heart. If there was a national holiday for back to school supply shopping, it would tie with Christmas as my favorite holiday, I kid you not. This book made me feel the same way I do about a new planner, a not yet creased notebook, a highlighter before the black ink stains the tip. Dear God, this book was fun, and I have my fingers crossed that someone picks it up for a movie adaptation.
You can buy your own copy of Small Admissions here.