Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Review: Holly's Inbox - Scandal in the City

Summary: Dear Holly, isn’t it shocking…? Things are finally going Holly Denham’s way: she’s in love, she’s getting the recognition she deserves at work, and her friends and family have graciously opted to avoid disaster for the moment.

Just when Holly is starting to settle into her new life, scandal erupts and Holly finds herself—and her in box—at the center of a gossip whirlwind that threatens everything she’s worked so hard for.

Written entirely in emails, this follow-up to the UK smash hit Holly’s Inbox will keep you glued to its pages as the scandal running rampant in the city threatens to ruin Holly’s hard-earned and long-awaited happiness. -- Sourcebooks Casablanca

Last summer, I read and reviewed a very cute book called HOLLY'S INBOX by Holly Denham. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this very chick-lit story about a woman who was a secretary at a bank! I think one of the main reasons I liked the novel so much was that the story was presented in such an original way -- the entire book was written in the form of emails. I also think that the author's very funny sense of humor helped a bit too!

I was very excited when I heard that there was a sequel to HOLLY'S INBOX called HOLLY'S INBOX: SCANDAL IN THE CITY. I admit that I feel a little bit in love with Holly's character in the first book and I was very curious about what happened to her. I wanted to learn if the relationship with her boyfriend worked out, and how things went with her job and co-workers. Plus, I so enjoyed her crazy friends and all of their antics.

I'm very happy to say that I did enjoy SCANDAL IN THE CITY as much as the first novel! The book definitely met my expectations for entertainment, and I just adore reading about all of the office politics and fighting (especially among the catty women!) While the book is certainly a lot of fun and a wee bit satirical, many of the workplace emails (with all of the backstabbing) were all too familiar. Thank goodness I'm done with the corporate world and get to focus on books!

HOLLY'S INBOX: SCANDAL IN THE CITY is an ideal summer read. Despite the book's size (almost 550 pages), I managed to read it in less that three hours -- so it's perfect for a day at the beach or an afternoon by the pool! Once again, I found myself laughing at so much of the communication between Holly and her friends, but I also enjoyed Holly's interactions with her family. In fact, the emails between Holly and her mother and her brother were a riot. Having said that, I also really liked reading about the ups and downs of Holly's relationship; and I appreciated that there were a few surprises thrown into the end of the story. Needless to say, I liked so many things about this book -- it's just sheer fun and pure escapism!

I remember when I read the first book that it did take me a few pages (well maybe more than just a few) to actually follow the style of writing. Once I got used to it, I could fly through the pages! It's strange, but when I began SCANDAL IN THE CITY, I had the same issue. The characters weren't fresh in my mind and it took me a short while to catch back up to the story as well as the format of the book. I think because using emails to tell a story is so original that my brain just needed a little bit of time to catch on -- or maybe it's just because I'm getting old!

The Holly's Inbox books are actually written by Bill Surie. Holly Denham is just a pen name! He is the owner of a placement service for receptionists and secretaries in London so I'm sure he's seen his fair share of office politics. If you are interested in getting a glimpse of Holly's email, then you should check out the website that Mr. Surie created. It is adorable because it actually does look like an email inbox!

It's probably not necessary to read the original HOLLY'S INBOX first before SCANDAL IN THE CITY, but I do recommend it. There is some background about Holly, her job and her friends that I liked knowing when I started the second book. If you enjoy chick lit (and especially British chick lit), then I highly recommend the Holly's Inbox series!

Thanks to the publisher for sending me a copy of this book.


rhapsodyinbooks said...

I'm glad you like this series so much - they do sound like fun! And what a surprise about the identity of the author!

Sandy Nawrot said...

I still have Holly's Inbox sitting on my shelves. It intimidating me by how darned thick the book was, so it is encouraging to hear about how quick you can get through it. Sounds like a perfect book for a day by the pool! I'm sure I'd love it. I worked in the corporate world too, and boy do I remember all that nastiness! Women were so awful to each other.

bermudaonion said...

I felt the same way - this book was tons of fun!

Beth F said...

I have been wanting to read these since you first mentioned them last summer. They sound like the perfect vacation read.

The Book Chick said...

I really enjoyed this one as well- I read it on the beach in an afternoon! I agree with you about the beginning, though. It took me a bit to get reaquainted with all of the characters and figure out exactly what was going on!

Anonymous said...

I loved this book! It's such a fun, fast read, and like you, I recommend reading the first book first. The office politics aspect is hilarious and reminds me of some of the crap I deal with on a daily basis!

Amused said...

I'm so glad to hear you like both of these books as I am just about to read them both...soon!

S. Krishna said...

I actually didn't enjoy this one as much as the first! Holly's drinking really got to me, I felt like she was immature. However, I did like the ending and thought it was satisfying!

Karlie said...

I still need to read the first one, but now I'm going to put it at the top of my reading list so I can read this one too!