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This chic read is sure to take the fashion world by storm, although the literary world may find it lacking. Weisberger, former assistant to Vogue editor Anna Wintour, has created a fictionalized tell-all la Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus's The Nanny Diaries. Andrea is a nice Jewish girl from suburban Connecticut who, as Weisberger repeatedly tells us, lands "a job a million girls would die for" as assistant to Miranda Priestly, the imperious editor of Runway magazine. But the job is more like indentured servitude with a one-year contract; 14-hour days are de rigueur and encompass such delights as sorting Miranda's laundry, fetching her lunch, and responding instantly to such commands as "Ahn-dre-ah, hand me a scarf." The carrot at the end of the stick is the promise of a dream job with The New Yorker, which somehow makes palatable Miranda's invectives and the ensuing downhill slide of Andrea's personal life. This fast-paced black comedy has enough dirt to please any fashionista but should serve as fair warning for every girl who dreams of working at a fashion magazine. Despite the pedestrian writing, the prepublication buzz on this novel is big, so buy for demand. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 2/1/03.]-Stacy Alesi, Southwest Cty. Regional Lib., Boca Raton, FL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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Most recent college grads know they have to start at the bottom and work their way up. But not many picture themselves having to pick up their boss's dry cleaning, deliver them hot lattes, land them copies of the newest Harry Potter book before it hits stores and screen potential nannies for their children. Charmingly unfashionable Andrea Sachs, upon graduating from Brown, finds herself in this precarious position: she's an assistant to the most revered-and hated-woman in fashion, Runway editor-in-chief Miranda Priestly. The self-described "biggest fashion loser to ever hit the scene," Andy takes the job hoping to land at the New Yorker after a year. As the "lowest-paid-but-most-highly-perked assistant in the free world," she soon learns her Nine West loafers won't cut it-everyone wears Jimmy Choos or Manolos-and that the four years she spent memorizing poems and examining prose will not help her in her new role of "finding, fetching, or faxing" whatever the diabolical Miranda wants, immediately. Life is pretty grim for Andy, but Weisberger, whose stint as Anna Wintour's assistant at Vogue couldn't possibly have anything to do with the novel's inspiration, infuses the narrative with plenty of dead-on assessments of fashion's frivolity and realistic, funny portrayals of life as a peon. Andy's mishaps will undoubtedly elicit laughter from readers, and the story's even got a virtuous little moral at its heart. Weisberger has penned a comic novel that manages to rise to the upper echelons of the chick-lit genre. Agent, Deborah Schneider. (Apr. 22) Forecast: Author readings in New York, the Hamptons, Dallas, Miami, Boca Raton, Atlanta, San Francisco and L.A. should target moneyed young women, as should a photo of the author's youthful face on the book's back cover. The publisher's hoping this will be the next Nanny Diaries, and with all the promo and pre-pub chatter in the New York Observer, Salon and elsewhere, it just might. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
In this debut novel (part of a wave of exposes about bad bosses that is sweeping the publishing world), former Vogue assistant Weisberger provides a telling account of life as an underling at the fictional Runway magazine. Here we meet Andrea Sachs, a recent Ivy League graduate hoping to break into the magazine business, with her ultimate goal being a job at the New Yorker. She accepts an entry-level position at Runway as personal assistant to the editor, Miranda Priestley (rumored to be based on Vogue's Anna Wintour). However, her new job has nothing to do with writing or editing, and everything to do with predicting and fulfilling every outrageous whim her prima donna boss might have. While the job makes incredible demands on Sachs' personal life, the perks are undeniable: rubbing elbows with celebrities, being outfitted in designer clothes, and jetting off to Paris for fashion shows. Yet Weisberger's characters are all uniformly shallow and two-dimensional, and she seems to be worshiping this lifestyle at the same time that she is supposedly skewering it. However, the book is garnering lots of press, with a film deal also in the works, and Weisberger's dishy style will appeal to many readers. Kathleen Hughes