Blind Submission: A Novel
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Spurred on by her aspiring-writer boyfriend Malcolm, Angel takes a job as personal assistant to powerful San Francisco literary agent Lucy Fiamma. Lucy, who gained prominence by discovering the wildly successful Alaskan memoir Cold! But Lucy is no fool, and she quickly discovers that Angel, who worked in an independent bookstore until it closed, has a natural gift for finding promising manuscripts and whipping them into shape.
Angel has a few more promising manuscripts in process when she receives an anonymous submission, a novel called Blind Submission , about a literary agency. Angel recognizes that the book is trashy but highly saleable, and Lucy quickly decides to represent the still-anonymous author. Then the chapters Angel begins receiving by e-mail have an increasingly familiar ring. Meanwhile, she and Malcolm break up after his book is rejected by the agency. Angel becomes involved with Damiano. As the chapters of B. Who is the author and why is he or she out to get Angel? Ginsberg comes across as an insider who is having a lot of fun skewering the seamier aspects of publishing.
There was a problem adding your email address. On the bright side, Ginsberg does provide some actual scenes of Lucy Fiamma making a hard sell, instead of just telling us. Still, it feels like Debra's trying to hard to draw attention to that fact. Oh, look, I can write a smooth-talking hard seller! Now she's researching her boss's sleep habits. Plot makes small reappearance. How on earth does one do yoga in a skirt? Still a slow-moving book. I have to say, I don't always like the main character. She can be petty and annoying, though generally sympathetic. Just realistic flaws, I guess.
Ginsberg's done a remarkably great job of characterising Angel, I'll give her that.
In fact, she's done a good job on Damiano-or-whatever-his-name-is, too. Shame that the book is so boring that I skipped ahead at about page I now know whodunnit. Should I spoil it for you? Wasn't expecting employer nudity there. And yet, it happened. Chalk up yet another point against Lucy Fiamma being a well-rounded character. With emphasis on the well. It feels like the book is moving very fast, and yet it's going nowhere at all. You can actually use the Dan Brown technique here and still know what's going on. Okay, okay, I coined the term 'Dan Brown technique' myself, but let me explain it anyway.
The Dan Brown technique is when you read every third page or paragraph of a novel and it still makes sense. Okay, I got my metafiction. So far, I'm enjoying the novel-within-the-novel more than the book. Something is wrong, here. Wow, freaky emotionally manipulative boss. Plus, Malcolm's fully just turned from sweetheart boyfriend to Anger Boy. Yeah, that makes sense. Dare I say it, but the transformation seems just a little forced.
Yeah, this girl spends way more time than she should angsting about how to deal with female co-workers who have not actually asked her out yet. And probably never will. She's been doing it throughout the whole book, but I haven't mentioned it until now. Geez, Angel, get a grip! So, apparently Lucy's little towel-dropping thing was forced foreshadowing.
And also, dare I say it, stupid. Excuse me whilst I read with my eyes shut. I'll get back to you later. You know, I'm still not sure how she figured out that Lucy did it, just from that little encounter Malcolm just seemed to flick the switch from 'nice' to 'awful' very suddenly.
And Angel does the same from aggressively competitive and petty to overly nice. Maybe they're both bipolar. No offence to those with bipolar syndrome. Dami's romantic tricks were a little corny and over-done. I mean, come on. He gave her angel-hair pasta, some Angelica wine or something, an angel fish isn't the rule that you never give a person you like something that they have to feed or water?
He's a pastry chef, so he baked her angel-food cake. Go read something else. View all 5 comments. Oct 08, Leah rated it it was ok. Not to go on a feminist rant, but does every chick lit novel have to have a young woman go to humiliating lengths to please her unbelievably demanding female boss? Why do all women in power have to be bitchy, unsympathetic and slightly insane? I bought this book because I thought it would be fun to see someone poke a little fun at the industry I work in, but besides the goofy query letters, there wasn't too much resembling a real "insider's look" at publishing.
I also found it somewhat ironic th Not to go on a feminist rant, but does every chick lit novel have to have a young woman go to humiliating lengths to please her unbelievably demanding female boss? I also found it somewhat ironic that the heroine is supposed to be this whiz-kid book doctor, yet the book itself leaves some major character arcs completely dangling what the heck is going on with Craig?!
I started out giving this book 3 stars because I did like the suspense angle and it did engross me enough to keep reading to findout what was going to happen. But the more I wrote, I realized I really didn't think this one was that great. Jan 24, John rated it liked it.
For obvious reasons, I'm always a sucker for novels set in the book trade, so this was a natural for me. Angel Robinson, at the urging of her would-be-writer boyfriend Malcolm, gets a job as dogsbody at the prestigious Lucy Fiamma Literary Agency, ruled in tyrannical fashion by Lucy Fiamma herself.
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Very soon Angel shows herself to have a good eye for marketable manuscripts, and Lucy starts taking her views seriously and giving her extra responsibility and pay -- a mixed blessing, because Angel For obvious reasons, I'm always a sucker for novels set in the book trade, so this was a natural for me. Just to add to Angel's problems, an unpublished author who insists on anonymity has started submitting piecemeal a novel: In the ordinary way and in real life , this'd present no difficulties, because Angel would simply reject it; unfortunately, she senses it has the makings of a bestseller.
What's frightening, though, is that it's set in a busy literary agency not unlike Lucy's, and the central character seems to be based on Angel herself, complete with details that only those closest to her should know. The last novel I read was Joyce Carol Oates's Jack of Shadows , likewise set in the book trade, although the focus is on an author rather than a literary agency. The premises of the two books are different but they i. The books themselves don't -- in fact, their feels could hardly be more disparate. Ginsberg has chosen to so overstate the busyness of the agency and the illogical ruthlessness of its principal that the effect is almost like one of those old Hollywood screwball comedies.
It's the same, for me, with Blind Submission. The plot pulled me along, I enjoyed the extracts from the various "literary works," Angel herself was a character whose company I much enjoyed there's just enough self-interest hiding beneath her external likability to make her a real, appealing person , but I grew frequently tired of bloody Lucy being unreasonable the whole time, Devil Wears Prada -style, and irritated by the obvious fallacy of people getting through great slabs of work while never being given long enough without distraction to actually do any of it.
There are lots of good things in this book, and perhaps I'm being unfair in stressing the aspects that irked me; I'm quite prepared to believe others will love it. Nov 22, Christina rated it really liked it Recommended to Christina by: I packed the book for my trip to Boston and Philly but read all pages on the drive from Amherst, Massachusetts to New Jersey.
I really enjoyed this novel. While the horrible boss theme has been done before The Devil Wears Prada , the e-mailed murder novel is a nice twist. I loved the smoothness and bright colors of their jackets. For me, a stacked, unread pyramid of books was one of the sexiest architectural designs there was. Because what I loved most about books was their promise, the anticipation of what lay between the covers, waiting to be found.
May 09, Nancyc rated it it was ok Shelves: Another addition to the Chick Lit genre which takes place in the publishing industry, Blind Submission is The Devil Wears Prada, set in a literary agency. Also similar to Prada, rumor has it that this book is a roman e clef. Just as Miranda Priestly is rumoured to be born in the image of Anna Wintour in Prada, the publishing doyenne recently fired from Harper Collins, Judith Regan, is purported to be the inspiration for boss-from-hell, Lucy Fiamma, in Blind Submission.
Blind Submission has all the ingredients which make Chick Lit fun. The main character is likeable and humorous. She enters an employment situation which seems to be a shining opportunity and embodies the perfect job to match her personal interests…except for the fact that the job is located squarely in hell. She gets her jollies by reducing her staff to tears and enjoys pitting them against each other and manipulating them to dissolve their working relationships.
Except for it being a remake of another widely popular book, Blind Submission is an entertaining read. I will look for Debra Ginsberg on reading lists in the future. Jan 29, Gayle rated it it was ok Shelves: This first novel from Debra Ginsberg has an intriguing premise. As she learns to deal with Lucy's outrageous demands and her own crumbling personal life, Angel discovers she has a flair for spotting and refining talent.
And then an anonymous manuscript appears and everything changes. I liked it at first.
The characters are distinctive enough, the plot moves This first novel from Debra Ginsberg has an intriguing premise. The characters are distinctive enough, the plot moves along and the milieu is fascinating. I was just going to read the first chapter, and some time later realized that I was half way through the book. Guess I'll have to finish it.
Soon after that, I tripped over an Obligatory Sex Scene, which bores me to death, so I lost interest, and took a peek at the end to see whodunnit. But this chick lit subgenre is getting old for me. Energetic young thing takes a demanding job from an over-the-top boss, loses or nearly loses everything, then pulls it together and triumphs in the end, or gets fired, parting ways from Devil Boss Lady usually , who continues wreaking her satanic will on hapless subordinates, but at least not on Our Heroine.
I'm done with this genre. Sep 23, Robert Palmer rated it liked it. A blind submission is when a person submits there manuscript without using an agent and without contacting the publisher at all,in other words just dropping it in the mail out of the blue. Angel seems to have a gift for finding the best A blind submission is when a person submits there manuscript without using an agent and without contacting the publisher at all,in other words just dropping it in the mail out of the blue. Angel seems to have a gift for finding the best manuscripts and getting them into shape to become a bestseller.
The plot was okay,the characters were interesting up to the point when I began to loose interest. I'm not recommending this book to anyone! La lettura era solo una parte del piacere che ricavavo dai libri. Provavo una piacevole ebbrezza sentendo tra le mani il peso e la consistenza di un nuovo libro, e un godimento sensuale alla fragranza e al fruscio delle pagine. Adoravo i colori brillanti delle copertine lucide. Jul 15, Denise rated it it was amazing. An unexpected page turner. Aug 13, Serena rated it really liked it.
Debra Ginsberg's Blind Submission is another book I found through the book blogging world, and it qualifies for the Irresistible Review Challenge. I read the review of this book at Book Escape. While this book was deemed a mystery, I found it less mysterious than I originally expected. Whether that is because I am overly analytical, I don't know.
I did figure out the ending among the first mentions of the mystery manuscript, Blind Submission, but I was eager to see how the mystery unfolded. Her boyfriend and writer, Malcolm, pushes her to apply to the famed Lucy Fiamma Literary Agency, one of the only literary agencies on the West Coast. Angel half-heartedly applies and goes to the interview, which she aces. Angel is beside herself that she interviewed successfully, but when she gets to the office, she feels a bit nervous about her ability to perform the tasks before. Angel quickly comes to realize that her boss is hard-nosed and a bit bipolar.
She tells her to complete tasks one way and then complains when they are not completed the other way. Eventually, Angel gets a handle on her job and grows a bit more confident in her position at the firm. She rustles the feathers of her co-workers. One of whom is named Kelly, but Lucy refuses to call her Kelly--Lucy calls her Nora and expects everyone to do the same. Nora-Kelly is an anorexic beauty, with little brains, while the other co-worker, Anna, is lazy and eager to please. Angel seems to be the only one excelling at her job. Meanwhile, the money man, Craig, takes the reins of the office in his hands to ensure the agency runs smoothly and the workers stay in line.
Meanwhile, Angel sells a major book, which Lucy takes credit for She breaks up with her boyfriend, becomes paranoid, and spends many sleepless nights reading over a manuscript that eerily mirrors her life. However, in the process she finds love and direction to her life. The mystery of the Blind Submission manuscript unravels quickly toward the end of the book.
It was a worthwhile read, and I hope to see more from this author. I recommend that other pick it up and try it out. Jul 01, Michele rated it really liked it. The Devil is a Literary Agent This is a page-turner and I am the perfect audience for a book like this. Read further to see if you may be as well. It's very well written. Debra Ginsberg has an easy way with words, moves the plot forward with each page, and develops her characters, such as they are, beautifully.
Like the protagonist, Angel Robinson--a bookstore employee-turned assistant to a high-powered literary agent--I'm a voracious reader, I appreciate books and am sympathe The Devil is a Literary Agent This is a page-turner and I am the perfect audience for a book like this. Like the protagonist, Angel Robinson--a bookstore employee-turned assistant to a high-powered literary agent--I'm a voracious reader, I appreciate books and am sympathetic to authors. It may be extreme in terms of characterization and plot, but that's what makes "Blind Submission" a page-turner. And what voracious reader doesn't enjoy a book that she can read in one-to-two sit-down sessions?
All that said, this story bothered me. The agent, Lucy Fiamma, the literary world equivalent to the fashion industry's Miranda Priestly in the novel known as "The Devil Wears Prada" didn't have one likeable or redeeming quality. Everything about Lucy Fiamma is loathsome. It made me wonder why the sweet and innocent, and obviously intelligent Angel Robinson put up with her outrageous demands, her rude demeanor, and her entirely inappropriate behavior. Having experienced a boss from hell myself when I was in my late 20s and trying to get ahead, I remember putting up with a degree of humiliation, but in this story, it's so over the top that it makes Angel seem too wimpy to be a heroine I could champion.
Of course it's easy to guess that she "wins" in the end, and I'm afraid, it was obvious to me who was the anonymous author submitting poorly written almost painful to read excerpts of a novel called Blind Submission," which Lucy was hot to have published.
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I feel I ultimately kept reading because I wanted to see exactly how Angel would break free from Lucy AND I wanted to see how the "love story" would be resolved. Ginsberg does leave her reader with a satisfying ending, with all loose ends wrapped up neatly. I'm a fan of Debra Ginsberg's writing. Her memoir, About My Sisters had me completely riveted. I look forward to following her career, as I feel great things are to come.
May 22, planetkimi rated it liked it Shelves: It's not nearly as good as The Grift. Rather than the protagonist, Angel, the character Lucy Fiamma seems to be the most well-defined in the book. Actually, I got a better picture of nearly all the characters than I did of Angel herself.
Lucy is so overbearing that I actually was uncomfortable reading about the things she did sometimes - which is a triumph of characterization. On the other hand, I could barely remember that Angel is a redhead. That and the tattoo are the only two distinctive things I recall about her.
And to be fair, her work ethic stands out, too! Another strike against the book is that most of the action takes place in Lucy's office, which gets to be monotonous after a while. The entire book is mostly about Angel frantically running around with pieces of paper or typing away at her computer. On a positive note, the excerpts of the manuscripts mentioned in the book are quite inventive and interesting, and Angel's and Lucy's interactions with the respective authors is entertaining.
Nov 13, Gail rated it it was amazing. Angel Robinson yes that is her real name is a reader, she loves books and is contentedly working at a book store.
She lives frugally and loves Malcolm, a writer and waiter, she thinks is too handsome for her. When her friend, boss, and bookstore owner decides to close the store, Malcolm posts an add to work as an assitant to a legendary and flamboyant literary agent. Angel applies and gets the job and embarks on an aborbing and exhausting job with eccentric co-workers and a contradictory, ego- Angel Robinson yes that is her real name is a reader, she loves books and is contentedly working at a book store.
Angel applies and gets the job and embarks on an aborbing and exhausting job with eccentric co-workers and a contradictory, ego-centric, idiosyncratic, manipulative boss. As she reads and recommends submissions, Angel becomes stronger and finds she loves the work and working with writers. As you might guess Malcolm pressures her to submit his manuscript. That along with other submitted manuscripts create events both hilarious and frustrating.
Angel "arrives" as she finds love, learns what friendship means and boosts her own career despite some pretty mean manipulation and stupid betrayal. The happy endings, of which there are many, are cleverly relayed in a series of Book Notes press releases. A good story, well-told. Perhaps the ending was never in doubt and it was fun getting there. Dec 04, Geeta rated it really liked it. Satire about publishing set in a small literary agency in California.