Apr 21, 09
Read in April, 2009
** spoiler alert **
This book wraps a simple but interesting story in a book-long description of the college admissions process. It follows Portia, an admissions officer at Princeton, through a school year admissions season. This is the backdrop for everything in the book, including a complicated relationship, an affair, tales of a complicated youthful decision, a stunning realization, and a life-altering decision in response.
The plot was strong enough to keep me reading to the end. However, while at first it is quite interesting to read about the inner-workings of college admissions (I work at a university), the descriptions and irrelevant details go on and on and eventually become an annoying distraction from the story. By the end of the book I was skipping whole paragraphs because they weren't moving the plot forward. A minor annoyance throughout the book was an overuse of adjectives. For example, I cringed after the first 'sinewy,' but by the third or fourth I was ready to scream.
I'm giving it three stars because this book has some good writing and a fun plot, but it reads like it hasn't seen an editor yet.