Reader Girls are the hosts today for J'Adore New York Book Tour.
Book blurb: Catherine Lambert loves fashion and the law. One of only three applicants, out of a pool of thirty, selected to transfer from Edwards & White's Paris office to its Manhattan headquarters, and the only one assigned to the corporate group, Catherine is determined to continue impressing her bosses with her diligence and legal prowess. Meeting the firm's billable hours quota means long days and short nights, especially when two heinously spiteful secretaries are conspiring to undermine Catherine's reputation and efforts to please both the firm's clients and partners.
Making matters worse, one of the firm's particularly powerful and obnoxious clients propositions her, actually referring to her as his "favorite little lawyer." When she refuses his advances, he accuses her of becoming intoxicated at a charity event and embarrassing him, several colleagues, and their wives. His behavior places Catherine into a quagmire and threatens to derail her career.
Things start looking up when yet another client, Jeffrey Richardson, seems to show genuine interest in her. But is he too good to be true? She is just starting to believe that she might be able to "have it all" when Jeffrey requests that she engage in unethical conduct on his behalf that could ultimately lead to her disbarment and serious consequences for the firm. Did Jeffrey ever really care for her or was she merely his means to a financial end? Yet again, Catherine finds herself at a crossroads, questioning her career choices to date ... and what shape she wants her future to take.
About the author: Isabelle worked for over ten years in Toronto, New York City and Montreal as a lawyer in a large law firm and on Wall Street. In 2005, she was responsible for the business affairs of a fashion designer where she developed a penchant for haute couture. She enjoys running, skiing, and walking her pooch Leo.
J'ADORE NEW YORK is her first novel and she's currently working on its sequel, J'ADORE PARIS. Author blog
Paperback: 400 pages
Publisher: Harper; Original edition (October 4, 2011)
Our review: J'Adore New York has the fashionable glitz of Sex and the City with a truly realistic adult storyline about a talented female lawyer dealing with the machinations of the corporate world while trying to stay true to herself. Think of Miranda as a fully fleshed out character at work more than at play. Catherine is a stylish Parisian lawyer who transfers to her company's Manhattan office. We know she is driven and smart from the beginning--out of three (reduced from thirty) who applied for the position, she is chosen. Once Catherine is living in the glitzy mecca of New York City, she discovers life in the Big Apple is not at all what she envisioned.
Laborious hours, backstabbing and gossiping coworkers, a mean boss and corrupt clients, Catherine has a tremendous amount to deal with. Still, her enthusiasm may waver but never falters, and that makes her a charming and believable character, a woman to root for. Lafleche shows us a working woman actually working (which so many other stories seem to pass over) and we are never bogged down in law terms. Catherine knows what she wants, is determined to make partner, and doesn't let her workload shift her passion to succeed. And her ability to toss one liners throughout makes this story lively and enjoyable."I need a new pair of shoes like Paris needs more traffic" she tells her secretary, Rikash, another character I liked. Their conversations made me chuckle throughout and embued a serious story with a playful sense of humor and plenty of heart.
Just when Catherine thinks she has found a true New York romance with a client, Jeffrey Richardson, this man of wealth and power bursts her bubble and threatens her career as well. Yes, Catherine is the new girl in a new town, but author Isabelle Lafleche creates such an invigorating woman, the reader simply doesn't care if this is a tried formula. I'll admit I was surprised by Catherine's name and her ability to know so much American slang as she did being a Parisian. I expected a stronger sense of her background but having her character this way may have helped the story flow and keep the fast pace.
J'Adore New York works so well because of its well defined characters, involving story and strong plot, with a healthy dash of humor and fashion. Fans of chick lit may delight in this book.
Rating: Liked it.
Favorite excerpt: "Rikash approaches the counter as I pull out my wallet. "You're not going to like what I'm about to say, buttercup, but have you done a bit of background research on Jeffrey?"
"What do you mean?"
"Into his past. I just want to make sure he isn't another one of those players you find in the Hamptons. There's more out there by the square foot than privet hedges."
Catching me off guard, my back goes up. Why would Rikash say something like that a few hours before I leave?
"Rikash, this is no time to plant any doubts in my mind, I'm already nervous enough about the weekend as it is. Do you know something I don't?"
"I just don't want to see you get hurt.""
Cover comment: Lovely! The pink of Catherine's dress immediately grabs your eye and the way her head is tilted up as if looking up at Manhattan's skyline, is so symbolic to her struggles in the book.
Book source: Received from publisher for my honest critique.
Reader Girls has one paperback copy of J'Adore New York to give away to one reader. This contest is open to US residents only (sorry).