“It’s hard to reproduce those kind of results if — oh, sorry,” Jen said, realizing a beat too late that the rest of the room had gone quiet.Break in Case of Emergency, Jessica Winter, HarperCollins 2016
Good gods, absolutely everything and everyone about/in this story is/are annoying. I’ll own up to my responsibility though: I borrowed a book described as a satire.
Break in Case of Emergency tries to merge two different stories, which leads to all of that annoyance. One story is about a start-up, probably the satire part. It’s about ‘feeling’, ‘expanding’, ‘dreaming’, but no-one can give the protagonist a clear assignment because that would just be limiting. The lingo used is straight out of every #GIRLBOSS/life coach-pamphlet, so well done on that. But good gods, how annoying.
The other story is the wish for a child and all the hubbub to get one if it doesn’t come naturally. Of course, stress at a weird work place doesn’t help with that, but it’s the language used that’s so confusing that it took me several chapters to even understand what was going on.
On top of all that, the protagonist has such a bad view of herself that is just plain exhausting. As a reader I can’t fight satire and drama without finding support somewhere.
Often in a story, there’s too little plot or it’s spread out too thinly. This could easily have been two novels with plenty of moments to breathe added.