The List by Karin Tanabe

41UxUG+7mnL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX225_SY300_CR,0,0,225,300_SH20_OU01_Some books have such an interesting premise and story line that you continue reading them long after you realize that it will not satisfy. This is certainly true of The List by Karin Tanabe.

Our protagonist, Adrienne Brown gives up a career in New York as a writer for Town and Country and moves to Washington DC and joins The Capitolist, a non print, online news service. There in the Style Section she works insane hours that are standard for the new online media, writing up to 10 stories a day, sometimes on her Blackberry between appointments with the next celebrity in town to promote their cause.  Everything seems to be going great until she sees Olivia Campo, The Capitolist’s star female journalist, with a married senator in a compromising situation.  Intrigued by what she saw, Adrienne begins to investigate the biggest story of her career, even calling on her sister with whom she has a complicated relationship, to help her unravel the meaning of what she saw.

This is such an interesting premise, and there are such rich characters and relationships to be developed, but the book fails to live up to its promise.  Written in a breezy, tongue in cheek style, it is almost impossible to take Adrienne seriously, especially since she is given to such hyperbole. Everything ends with an exclamation point, and the breathless quality in which it is written, which I am sure was intended to show the fast paced life Adrienne lives, backfires and instead makes her sound vapid.  I had a hard time believing that anyone who had thoughts like Adrienne could possibly be a journalist of any caliber.

I realize the book was intended to be a witty expose of the life of a 20 something journalist in a city known for it political scandals, but it fell flat. Even “chick lit” should have some minimal literary standards, and at least some characters that you might want to spend time with or at least have coffee with.  I found that the only character that I was the least bit interested in was a peripheral character that she dumps because she is infatuated with a married man. In the end Adrienne writes the “big” story, destroys several other people’s lives in the process and solidifies her career but instead of rooting for her, I felt sorry for Olivia Campo, the supposed villain of the story, not a reaction that I think was intended.

I have only myself to blame for reading this to the bitter end… you, my dearest blog readers now have no such excuse!

Brenda’s Rating : *  (One Star out of Five Stars)  

Recommend this Book To: No one.

Book Study Worthy?: No

Read in ebook format


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3 Responses to The List by Karin Tanabe

  1. Bruce Helland says:

    Hi, Brenda. I like to read your recommendations about the books you have read. Your expressions are really to the point. You do a good job of explaining the story and then give your thoughtful critic. You held my interest and I will not read “The List” by Karin Tanabe. Love Dad.

  2. June Seat says:

    Brenda, at least your (non) recommendation was worth reading. Thanks. june

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