“Ocean’s Eleven meets The Devil Wears Prada” (The Skimm) in this hilarious, razor-sharp debut novel about a group of overeducated and underpaid women who decide they’ve finally had enough...
Rule #1: All important men have assistants. Rule #2: Men rule the world. Still. Rule #3: There is enough money. There is so much money.
Tina Fontana is a thirty-year-old executive assistant to Robert Barlow, the CEO of Titan Corp., a multinational media conglomerate. She’s excellent at her job and beloved by her famous boss—but after six years of making reservations and pouring drinks from bottles that cost more than her rent, the glamour of working for a media company in New York has completely faded, but her student loan debt has not.
When a technical error with Robert’s expense report presents Tina with the opportunity to pay off the entire balance of her loans with what would essentially be pocket change for her boss, she hesitates. She’s always played by the rules, but this would be a life-changer. As Tina begins to fall down the rabbit hole of her morally questionable plan, other assistants with crushing debt and fewer scruples approach her to say that they want in. Before she knows it, she’s at the forefront of a movement that has implications far beyond what anyone anticipated...
If the characters from HBO's Girls were capable of larceny and blackmail, they could be the main characters of Perri's sharp first novel. At age 30, Tina Fontana is the executive assistant to media titan Robert Barlow (think Rupert Murdoch, but with a Texas accent) in New York City. A clerical error on her expense account results in a $20,000 check for Tina, enough to pay off her student loan, which she impulsively decides to do. When a colleague, Emily Johnson, stumbles onto Tina's once-only scam, she talks Tina into performing the same financial prestidigitation for her. Emily also ends up becoming Tina's roommate. In no time, they become the victims of numerous blackmail attempts as other assistants want to have their college loans paid off courtesy of an unknowing Barlow. Things escalate beyond Tina's control, ultimately threatening her relationship with her new boyfriend, Kevin, a hunky lawyer who is also in Barlow's employ. How Tina extricates herself from the situation forms the moral crux of this entertaining slice of millennial life. Perri has a gift for the glib one-liner, and reserved Tina and glamorous Emily make for a great pairing, resulting in smart and fresh novel.