Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Book review: Romance Is My Day Job: A Memoir of Finding Love at Last by Patience Bloom

I was so excited to read what was essentially a meld of chick lit, a  memoir, and a book about editing! It is possibly that this combo of three of my favorite things lead to slightly unrealistic expectations. So it ended up being a case of a good, well-written book about things I like... that I found disappointing. Which basically means you should ignore me because I don't make sense.

Patience grows up in Connecticut, moves to Ohio, then to New Mexico, but does eventually end up in New York City, working as an editor at Harlequin, which she absolutely loves. She is in love with love. Idealistic and dewy-eyed, she reminded me of a baby deer wandering into traffic, and I worried about her in the city, but she seemed to navigate that aspect okay. But her love life was just one disaster after another. always looking for The One, she barrels through a string of inappropriate boyfriends. And yes, it is ironic that she's a romance editor and can't get her own love life sorted out. But of course things do end on a happy note.

I really wanted to read about her experience as an editor, and I found it much more congenial, collegiate, and cooperative than I remember. Her coworkers are awesome, her authors never seem to disagree with her suggestions, and Harlequin sounds like an awesome place to work. That said, it seemed pretty unrealistic and I was disappointed she perpetuates the dream of editing at the office (instead of at home) and neglects to mention the meetings, paperwork, and disagreements, but if this is her experience, I'm envious.

The book is light, breezy, enjoyable, and has a happy ending, so I do recommend it. It wasn't exactly what I was looking for, but that's not a fair bar to hold Ms. Bloom to.

I borrowed this book from a friend.


Katherine P said...

This sounds like a fun book but I can see where the smoothness of her job would be frustrating to someone who has experience in the editing world. I've read books about subjects I have experience with and no matter how well written it is if the experience isn't authentically done it's jarring. I don't necessarily need a walk through of every meeting but some tension or frustration would be nice!

Carin Siegfried said...

Exactly, Katherine! It felt like a true dream job and everyone knows there's no such thing. Some authors are difficult, some parts of the job are tedious, but I didn't get any of that, instead yet another unrealistic view of the publishing world to get 22-year-olds hopes up and not prepare them for the reality.