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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Bad Heir Day by Wendy Holden

Bad Heir Day: A Comedy of High Class and Dire StraitsPublisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
ISBN: 1402240619
Pages: 352 pgs
Genre: Romance/Humor/Comtemporary
Challenges-Read’n’Review Challenge, 100+ Reading Challenge

Summary from Publisher:
Anna's boyfriend is impossibly handsome, impossibly rich, and generally just impossible. When he inevitably dumps her, she vows to give up men and throws herself into her career as an aspiring novelist. Which is how she ends up working for Cassandra.

The social climber from hell, Cassandra has a huge mansion, a philandering rock star husband, Satan for a son, and a bestselling writing career that has massively stalled.

So when dashing Jamie, charming heir to a castle in Scotland, offers Anna an escape beyond her wildest dreams, she can't believe her luck. And she probably shouldn't...

My Review:
I was really looking forward to this one when I pulled it up on my Sony Reader. It looked like just the type of book I love.  British humor with a touch of romance. But there was something missing from this one. I liked it and couldn't put it down while reading but there were just some things that didn't work so well for me.

I have never met a book where the main characters annoyed me as much as in Bad Heir Day. Anna was a doormat. Always getting abused by her moron, Mummy's boy boyfriend and then by her narcissistic and overbearing boss. I hoped that she would gain a backbone and tell everyone off but she never did. Cassandra, Anna's boss, was perhaps the most evil and self-serving character I have ever come across--even on the level of Voldemort, Cruella Deville and Ursula from the Little Mermaid. She was loud, obnoxious, and selfish. She is also neglectful of her husband and son and treats those around her life trash. I never thought I would say this but I can understand why her husband sleeps with the nannies. However, I did find her interactions with Anna to be quite hilarious because Anna is normal, almost too normal, and Cassandra is a psychopath in the Joan Crawford "Mommie Dearest" kinda way. Now I must get to the real reason for my disappointment with this book...Jaime. I was expecting a dashing, debonair laird but I got a doddering and dimwitted man with more mummy issues (Nanny issues really) than her previous boyfriend. It really shocked me because I was expecting him to be the hero of this book because it seemed from the start that he would be. The real hero is even more of a shocker but spoilers are bad.

I was expecting this book to make me chuckle and it did...a lot. Anna had me cowering in embarrassment in a way that only Bridget Jones had succeeded before, Jaime was just a pathetic piece of inept man and Cassandra had rage episodes that had me in full blown laughter.   I also love the British type of self-effacing and sarcastic humor. It really is the only stuff that can make me really laugh. I was not expecting to be shocked and flabbergasted by Bad Heir Day. In my romance novel world, there is one hero and one heroine and when the hero whisks his heroine to his Highland castle it is not for any other reason other than he wants to marry her and have lots of kilted babies with her and if it is an "arrangement", it is not one for very long. But contrary to my norm, I was so happy when the romance with Jaime did not happen. Anna deserved so much better than that wussy, whimpy specimen of genetic fail.

Overall, this was one great read. Not because it does what you expect it to do but because it is surprising and hilarious. It also causes some extremely responses. If you don't have a strong reaction to the characters, I wonder about you.
*A copy of this book was provided to me by the publisher for review. My opinion is my own and has not been influenced in any way and any monies made from associate or affiliate accounts are recycled back into the blog.

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