Review: When You Read This by Mary Adkins
|When You Read This|
Genre: epistolary novel (told through letters/email), contemporary fiction
This novel was brilliant. The story is told through blog posts and emails of many different characters, primarily Smith and his former secretary Iris, her sister Jade, and Smith's company intern, Carl.
We learn at the beginning that Iris has died of cancer and has left Smith her blog posts to publish as a book after her death, her blog written while she was ill and undergoing chemotherapy. Smith's public relations company is failing but things begin happening when he hires Carl, the college student intern, to replace Iris for a summer. Carl sets things in motion, through bumbling, interfering, and general nosiness about his boss, the business, and about publishing Iris's blog.
The novel has a lot of humor, as in the emails and readers' responses to Iris's blogs. It also has pathos, sentimentality, and is in part a love story. It will have the reader crying and laughing at the same time, and is a book that I would call brilliant, excellently written and conceived.
Thanks to the publisher for an advance copy for my possible review.