HELP WANTED, DESPERATELY

Ariel Horn, Author . Avon $12.95 (342p) ISBN 978-0-06-058958-5

Alexa Hoffman, the 21-year-old University of Pennsylvania senior at the center of Ariel Horn's debut novel, has got exactly seven months, three weeks and two days before her initiation into the real world. Determined to secure a job in New York City, she embarks on a life-altering journey from one bizarre interview to the next. As a last resort and to avoid moving back in with her parents, she signs up to become an English teacher on the Third World island of Majuro while continuing her search for a job that will prevent her from actually having to go there. Over the course of this witty and wise coming-of-age novel, Alexa interviews for every imaginable position—earthworm breeder, deodorant sniffer, phone sex operator—evoking all the expectations and anxiety of the modern-day career search. Each chapter ends with a list of "Lessons Learned" comprising such hard-learned aphorisms as "Never assume your mother believes in something you plan on doing simply because she doesn't say otherwise" and "Do not—under any circumstances—interview for Internet jobs listed as 'other' ever again." Blithe and fresh-voiced, this book covers almost every tribulation of entering adulthood, forging a career and falling in love, against the odds. Agent, Jeff Kleinman. (Oct.)

Reviewed on: 09/27/2004
Release date: 10/01/2004
Ebook - 352 pages - 978-0-06-201163-3
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