Sourcebooks, Inc. - Fiction/British Chick Lit?
From: Charlie Denham
Good luck on Mond. If he looks at ya, let me know and e'll be swimming with the daisies.
To: Charlie Denham
Got your email--but did you mean pushing up the daisies, or swimming with the fishes?
From Charlie Denham
Was wasted on Sunday. I think when I wrote that I was even slurring a cockney accent--the one I usually use when I'm negotiating with plumbers and sparkies (so they think I'm a bit streetwise and don't just rip me off).
To: Charlie Denham
You told me they're always ripping you off.
From: Charlie Denham
Of course they are, because they see some middle class knob putting on a fake cockney accent and instantly double their prices. You seen Toby this morning yet?
Holly's Inboxis written entirely in emails, as you see in the example above. I've read a couple of email books -- I think by Meg Cabot -- and loved them. It's surprising how much character development one can create through a series of emails. But, at a massive 665 pages and given the fact that Holly Denham is a fictional character created by a man, I admit that I was a tiny bit skeptical that I'd enjoy it. It took about two pages to lay that skepticism to rest.
Holly's Inbox is miserably, painfully addictive. I started reading it on Wednesday evening and the pages just kept turning. I didn't want to put it down!! Finally, I decided I'd better try to get some sleep and set it aside at about 2:00 am. Well. That didn't work at all. By then, I was so far into the soap opera of Holly's world that I was a wee bit wired. Plus, my husband was in freight-train snoring mode. I ended up giving up on sleep at around 4:00 in the morning and just stayed up, typing and then reading until I reached the end of the story.
At the beginning of the book, Holly is starting a job as a receptionist at a corporate bank. The two receptionists can't be seen chatting, so they email each other. At first, Holly has trouble keeping up and Trisha seems a bit of a snob, but then the two receptionists become fast friends and allies. Meanwhile, Holly deals with uppity bank employees, chats with her wacky friends and dysfunctional family members, and develops a secret romance with one of the upstairs bankers.
A little bit of a mystery brews when a man named Toby begins working at the bank. Holly and Toby have a history, but it's very, very slowly revealed along with the rest of her past and how Holly, who has a decent education and apparently an upper-middle-class background, ended up working as a receptionist.
Holly's Inbox is unbelievably, compulsively readable. It's very much like peeking into someone else's mailbox, but not quite so cryptic as real-life emails can be. It's a well-rounded story, often funny, sometimes poignant. There's a lot of sex talk and sometimes it gets a little rude, but never enough that I was tempted to put the book down. That would be my only complaint with the book. With a sex addict as a character (Holly's friend, Aisha) and an office romance, you have to expect some rude sex talk. Holly herself is a sweet, lovable character -- very much like the heroines in Jill Mansell's books.
4.5/5 - Excellent, nearly impossible to put down, with great characters, loads of laughs and a little scandal.
Thank you those of you who took the time to tell me your preference for numerical ratings!!!
Coming soon: Two new giveaways!!
Many thanks to Jeanne for the Heartfelt Award! I'm also unable to copy and paste the image, Jeanne. The link, above, apparently goes to the originator of the award.
I want this on one of my walls:
That's a hooked rug, I believe, and it hung behind the reception desk at the hotel in which we stayed in Monteverde, Costa Rica. Isn't it beautiful?
Sounds like a great read. I've always loved epistolary novels (crazy voyeur type that I am) so an e-mail novel is right up my alley.ReplyDelete
I don't always love epistolary novels, but sometimes I do. I guess it just depends on the story. This is a good one. Loads of fun. :)
I really enjoyed the Meg Cabot ones, I think I'd like this too. Like you, I'd worry about it being so long but you make it sound like that isn't an issue.ReplyDelete
The length is only an issue if you start it too late in the evening because it's impossible to put down. It's a really quick read and awfully entertaining. :)
I'm not a big fan of chick-lit, but I love the epistolary style, so I'm definitely keeping this on my radar. Thanks!ReplyDelete
I wish you lived next door. I'd just hand you the book and let you flip through it, so you could see if it's your thing. I like good Chick Lit and I do think British Chick Lit is still the best. This one's right up there with Jill Mansell's books because the heroine is a really nice person. It's so much more fun reading about a decent heroine, don't you think?
I took a look at this title a little while ago, and somehow ended up on the blog. Something about the whole format just threw me off- I didn't find it appealing. Maybe the book form would be better.ReplyDelete
Kind of like peeking into someone's intimate life, huh? My grad friends and I sent a ton of emails back and forth while we were in school and we thought it would be funny to put them into a book of sorts, but I'm not sure if everyone else would think our 4:00 am sleep deprived must finish this paper by 8:00 am foolishness was funny. :) I haven't read anything by Cabot, but I'll keep this one in mind!ReplyDelete
I looked at the blog and it just made my head hurt. I couldn't figure out how you read anything. The book is perfectly straightforward and breezy reading. Sometimes one set of emails will interrupt another, but that's part of the fun.
Yes, exactly. Oh, who knows if rambling student emails would be funny. They very well could be. I used to write long, newsy emails and several of my email pals told me they thought I ought to write a book, just based on my anecdotes. I thought that was kind of crazy. LOL You've never read anything by Meg Cabot? I have a love/hate thing with Meg Cabot. You read her books and think, "I could do this." Of course, that's not true or she wouldn't be rich and famous, but they're very light and silly and fun.
I'm not usually a chick-lit person, but I love epistolary novels, and I think this sounds like a lot of fun! I could use a good laugh, maybe I'll get this. Thanks!ReplyDelete
This looks like fun! I am not a big chick-lit reader, but I might have to add this to the list for when I feel the need for something fun. :)ReplyDelete
This book sounds hilarious. I'll have to add to my ever growing list.ReplyDelete
This sounds like my kind of book but will put it on my list for later. :) I am finally posting a new blog. :)ReplyDelete
Well off to more reading! :)
Holly's Inbox looks good--I'll have to read it at some point.ReplyDelete
This one is on my list, but I'm still not sure. How rude/graphic is the sex talk?ReplyDelete
It's loads of fun and definitely a great book for when you need something fun and uplifting. :)
I don't read chick lit very often, either. I went through a chick lit phase, though, and I still think British chick lit is the best. This one's British and I really enjoyed it.
You've got a new blog? Where? I think you'd like Holly's Inbox. It's very, very light and fun.
You would love Holly's Inbox, I'm certain.
Well, it can be a bit on the gross side -- some of the suggestions the gay friend makes and the comments by that sex-addict friend. I tried to ignore the sex talk and it still bugged me a bit, but I loved Holly. She's a great character, very sweet, and she does have an affair but she doesn't sleep around or talk dirty, so the heroine is really quite lovable. It really just depends on how much you can tolerate. I was so in need of an upper that I chose to just work at ignoring the rude bits. It's definitely an upper -- very fun reading.
Sorry, I totally zipped over your comment. It's a really fun book and I highly recommend it, even with the quantity of sex talk (which, I don't think is that far off from real life if you've got a sex addict involved, LOL). Those wish lists can get pretty ponderous, can't they? I call mine a wish brick, sometimes.
I wish I'd read your review before I put in my online order at Chapters the other night - this book sounds like a great read. I really enoyed Meg Cabot's email novels, and I think I'd really enjoy Holly's Inbox.ReplyDelete
Why, thank you. That sounds like quite a compliment! I love Meg Cabot's email novels, too. This one is huge but I still managed to finish it in just two readings! You won't believe how completely sucked into Holly's story you'll become. Next order, then, eh? :)
Not a new blog, a new post. :) I am that tired. lolReplyDelete
I can see where this concept would work. I love epistolary books and emails are the new letters. Sounds like a fun book.ReplyDelete
Meg Cabot has written some email epistolary books and they're quite funny. This one was great. I actually appreciated the length because I didn't want to leave Holly's life.
You have got to stop talking about this book, Bookfool! You are driving me to read!!!ReplyDelete
Give in to the force, Joy. LOLReplyDelete
This sounds like something I'd enjoy! I'm going to nominate it for my book club's "fluff" read next month. Thank for the great review, Nancy.ReplyDelete
It's a great fluff read!
Thank you Bookfool - it's so kind of you to review my book - sorry it kept a few people up late.... but just love hearing that. I really wanted it to make people happier in the long run, which has been the general feeling, so I can't complain.ReplyDelete
x Thanks again
Thanks for dropping by! Now you know what a miserable (yet delightful) night I had because of you, so you can hurry up with that second book. :)
Bookfool - after sooooo many amazing comments by you - I will hurry up and get it on the shelves!!ReplyDelete
Also I feel I owe you a huge thank you when I ever get lucky enough to get to the USA - so will have to have a book party or something!
Yes, you must rush. I do get a little enthusiastic about books I love, don't I? Do let me know if you pop into my territory. :)
You do get enthusiastic - and I will definitely let you know if I ever get lucky enough to go to the States!ReplyDelete
I just finished reading this book and I loved it, but I had attempted to read it once before and could not get into it.ReplyDelete
Once I was involved I too was reading until 2am and woke up the next day to get it finished. I would also like more, can we get a series here???
Once I was really into it, I couldn't resist it either! It's so funny and everything.ReplyDelete
It is written by a man? Gosh, I didn'tsee that coming. Oh, well he's good :D
I hope you remember my book Holly’s inbox, you were so kind to give me a review. At last it’s been made into an ebook – and because of the book’s email format – it makes perfect reading now for an iphone or ereader (and obviously a lot lighter) And I’m hoping that’s exciting news for lots of people (and I’ve talked the publishers into halving the price!)
I’ve also had a website built for it, which gives readers the chance to see if they find it funny. I’ve added extracts of the two books which includes Jason’s amazing Break Up Guide in 5 Easy weeks, which I thought they might like as a taster… our new site is at www.hollysinbox.com If you’d like me to answer some questions or do something fun for your blog, just let me know. Xxxx (Holly / Bill)