Anna's Reviews > In Office Hours

In Office Hours by Lucy Kellaway
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's review
Apr 21, 11

bookshelves: audio
Read from March 17 to April 12, 2011

Apparently there was some study that showed that a quarter of British office workers had some kind of inappropriate relationship with a co-worker. Lucy Kellaway is a columnist for the Financial Times so she knows these sort of things. Seems pretty astonishing to me but since I don't know any details of the study and its methodology, I can't pass judgement on that. Bella is a single mother and a personal assistant having an affair with her boss, James. Stella is middle-aged, married and a hard-nosed corporate executive having an affair with a young Welsh trainee (intern, I assume), Rhys. They both work at a global oil company in London. Bubbling below the surface is the risk-taking and rosy forecasts recently exhibited in the business practices of large companies - this is the most interesting part of the book and presumably, something Kellaway knows a lot about. The most annoying part is that these folks are constantly away from work in hotels or on the roof snogging. Personally, I have to be at work during work hours. I rather liked the character of James, overwhelmed by desire one minute and in office mode the next sending emails and texts that read more like business memos than love letters. Texting and emailing feature large in these romances and that works pretty well on audio. I liked Alison Reid - she sounds a bit upper class and a bit aloof but keeps these women distinct which I gather isn't so easy when reading the book. I have no idea if Rhys actually sounded Welsh or not but the voice was entertaining anyway.
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