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(e #1)

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  2,607 ratings  ·  291 reviews
A fast-paced, wickedly funny tale of office back-stabbing and corporate intrigue that unfolds in a succession of escalating e-mails.

Carla Browne-1/5/00, 3:05 pm
to: All Departments
re: I'm leaving now . . . but before I go there are some things you should know . . . !!!!

Set in a London ad agency desperate to land a coveted big account, e follows the bureaucratic bunglin

Paperback, 1st, 352 pages
Published September 4th 2000 by HarperCollins (first published 2000)
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4.06  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,607 ratings  ·  291 reviews

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May 18, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fun
Great fun, this book! It's entirely written in emails to and from employees of an advertising agency, where a lot of things are going on.... hilarious!!!! Remember laughting my *** off at the campfire in Canada/US last year.
May 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: junk-food-reads
'e' was a very entertaining read. I was impressed at how Beaumont managed to juggle so many main characters and still keep their email personalities quite distinct, save for two men who I couldn't tell apart (which is pretty normal when you think about it). As for those who say that real people don't actually talk the way the 'e' characters do in emails--they're wrong. I've worked online for 10+ years and Beaumont's representations are -exactly- how people talk. As for info that Beaumont occasio ...more
May 24, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: british
okay so let's discuss. I like this book. I mean it isn't going to win a nobel prize or anything but I was thoroughly entertained walking by the hudson river reading it. My feet hurt at the end but I don't blame that on the book.

Okay so here is the thing about this book, there is nothing truly outstanding about it. I mean is there ever in a british novel. No not really. Not to say I don't love them, as Karen knows I commonly buy a book solely because it says the author is british and the queen m
Mar 21, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anglophiles with a sense of humor
This is one of the funniest books I have ever read. It's about a London ad agency trying to land a major Coke campaign and it's set entirely in email. It's brilliant and each time I read this book, I laugh out loud.

The above was written in 2007. Every couple of years, I pick this one back up when I'm in need of a boost. This week I needed some serious laughs, so I decided to dive back into this hilarious story. It never, ever gets old for me, no matter how many times I've read it. Be
Apr 24, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: english, humour
Q: What’s the difference between „The Godfather“ and „e – A Novel”?
A: The sequel of “e – A Novel” (i.e. “E²”) is better.

Ok, the book is still funny, the characters are dumb, ridiculous schemers, and the bosses are self-righteous arseholes.
Very entertaining, and very hard to put down. The book mostly consists of e-mails, sms’ and private messages so you have to reconstruct the stories behind all these messages. Confusing in the beginning but it doesn’t take too long to recognize the voices and t
Jan 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I read this book when it first cae out, years ago - before Twitter, before Facebook, before Google. Yes folks, it's that old. I think there are even references to fax machines. But it was hilarious - I was laughing so much reading it on the tube that people even started conversations with me. It's that good. Younger readers may not get all the references, but, despite the format, the technology isn't the key thing. It is just so funny and so well observed. The best book about working in a contem ...more
Apr 13, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Mary by: Alison Green
A fast read -- funny, inappropriate, clever
Anastasia Garcia
Told in the form of short e-mails, Matt Beaumont details the events of Miller-Shanks, a London-based advertising agency, as they pitch to Coca-Cola.

Initially the e-mails are difficult to sort through because it takes a while to organize the characters, the character voices, and their motivations. I drew up a tiny character chart that helps keep things in order. (See below) Once you do organize the characters their e-mails are easy to read and you zip through them, hurriedly flipping pages uncov
Mel Humphris
May 13, 2018 rated it it was ok
I originally read this when the book was released in the early 2000s and thought it was hilarious, clever, witty and original. Now on re-visiting it I am struck with disappointment and disdain for its lazy use of tropes and casual sexism and even a dash of homophobia / transphobia. There are definitely still elements of clever wit and humour, and the concept of writing it as a series of emails is a touch of genius, but it just made me go "ugh" too many times now. It hasn't aged well as a novel, ...more
Oct 03, 2011 rated it it was ok
The Epistolary format has been used as narrative method in many novels. Some others have parts of it written as letters. John Barth went as far as making the characters of his previous novel write letters to each other in his novel 'Letters'. But times have changed and so the epistolary novel too had to be changed. That's what matt Beaumont has done with his novel 'e', which consists entirely of emails sent by the characters of the novel. Published in 2000, this is said to the first novel to be ...more
May 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, humor
Told exclusively in emails and set in the early days of 2000, this is the story of three weeks or so at a London ad agency. REALLY good at differentiating characters, and yes, we've all got some of these characters in our inboxes at work. However, this is also dated in the sense that the humor is sometimes horribly sexist, and the female characters seems to be a bit unbelievable.

Oh, well, I will probably look up the sequel to see if it's as much fun. Very much schadenfreude -- thank God no one
Sep 13, 2015 rated it it was ok
This is an interesting book written entirely by e-mails. I had mistakenly thought it was e-mails between 2 people, but instead it is the e-mails of an entire office of an advertising agency. It's written so that you can follow what's going on from a number of angles, and easily spot all the backstabbing and office politics going on.

Because of the way that it's written, you don't really get to know any one particular character. As such, it's difficult to get really "involved" in the book. However
Mar 11, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This very funny book is about office politics and other goings-on in London, all told in email. It's a close-up look at what we all know to be true if we've ever worked in an office of any size.

There were many individuals represented, and Beaumont kept them separate and interesting. Email has changed how we conduct our lives and business. I think today many of these messages would be sent via text, so they would be a little more private, but not nearly as much fun.
Jun 20, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was fun. The email epistolary form worked pretty well. I'm not sure if it would have worked as well not set in an office, but it worked here. I do think the book seemed longer than it needed to. Some themes just seemed to repeat instead of concluding and then concluded the way they could have earlier without persuading me they needed to go on longer or without really developing the tension much further, but I still had fun. It works for the most part.
Apr 16, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2012
This was a really great book. I love the concept that the entire story is presented through e-mails. What I found interesting about it was that I realized half-way though that I could care less about the majority of the characters, yet I still couldn't put the book down. I thought it was a fun book and I liked that everyone got what they deserved in the end.
Jamie Collins
A novel comprised entirely of email communication between the employees of a London advertising agency in January 2000. It reads like a mash-up of Mad Men and the UK version of The Office.

It was amusing at first, but it lost me when the guys took off for the island commercial shoot. Nothing about that escapade was really funny.
Judit Gonzalez
Jul 20, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: paper-books
Funny, interesting, revealing book.
I could see so many of my office peers depicted in the description of some of the characters in this book (just like in the TV show "the office"). Makes you laugh even harder when you can relate an absolutely horrible character to a person you know, and the author helps you make that transition.
Highly recommended (not so much the second book)
May 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This book is one of the ones that forever changed my outlook on fiction. Written entirely in the form of inter-office e-mails.. it was a brilliant approach to modern storytelling. Not to mention laugh out loud funny.
Rachna Dhall
Jan 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This was the first book I read in an 'email trail' format, and set within a crazy ad agency at that. I started on a friday, couldn't put down till i was done over the weekend. Hilarious.
Feb 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing
One of the funniest books I've ever read. Follow the adventures of London's Miller Shanks ad agency as they try to land the Coca-Cola account - completely in e-mail form.
Oct 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: funny
Jodi's recommendation. Light, entertaining and very, very funny.
Feb 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
I found this gem in a second-hand store and thought, what the heck, let's see what people were emailing about in the year 2000. Once I got past the initial confusion of who's who, this quickly became a page-turner. Even though I prefer my humor a bit more subtle, and some of the author's artistic liberties didn't quite feel authentic enough to add to the story (unless secretaries were regularly in the habit of using !!!!!!!!!s liberally and signing their names with at least three x-es a head), I ...more
Dec 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned-books, reviewed
There are some ideas so brilliantly simple that you wonder why no-one had thought of them before. Writing a book in the form of E-Mails was one such idea and with E-Mails now such a widespread form of communication, even more so than when “E” was first published in 2000, it seems such an obvious thing to do. You can always tell the strength of an idea by how many imitations it spawns and the release of “Who Moved My Blackberry?” five years later suggested the idea was still a popular one.

“E” fol
Jun 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
To call this book a blast would be an understatement. The story was unexpectedly amazing and must read for those who like laugh-out-loud funny stories written in email epistolary format.

Set in early 2000, the story follows Miller-Shanks advertising employees a few days after they jump into the new year. They've been called back to work because there is a big pitch for them to nail and their London CEO demands perfection if it must come with blood, sweat, and tears. What follows is outrageous ac
I currently work at an advertising agency, the Creative Director and I were discussing Mad Men and he told me I had to read this book because it captures Advertising entirely.... needless to say this book was ridiculously on point!

The book was written in 2000 so it is a little outdated, but it still manages to capture what it is like working at an advertising agency. The book is written in email correspondence amongst the worker at a fictional agency. When I just started reading, it took awhile
Maureen Twomey
Jul 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
? Maureen Twomey (
To: You
cc: Matt Beaumont (
Subject: e

(I was going to put a Twitter Symbol "mail” on the very top, not a “?”, but it won’t let me. You CAN put the symbol “mail” on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and basically anything else, so WHY can’t you put a symbol “mail” on THIS form? I don’t no.)

I was going to write something like,

"A fast-paced, wickedly funny tale of office back-stabbing and corporate intrigue that unfolds in a succession of escalat
Clare Hudson
Aug 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
2nd read...... originally read it 10+ years ago
The first time of reading (when I was still working in an office), it was hilarious, tears rolling down face type of funny! Now, semi-retired, it's funny but not that "stop, stop, I can't take any more" type of laughter.

Very cleverly written (and with husband working in design agency I can see the parallels).... thoroughly enjoyable. I believe there's a follow up book - will have to try and find a copy of that.
Valerie Pate
Jan 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book is really quite clever. The narrative is completely given through email exchange, and yet manages to tell a coherently intriguing story of office politics and ad-campaign mayhem.
Despite being nearly twenty years old it did not feel excessively dated.
A nice little break from more serious fodder.
Jan 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
I found this really enjoyable, it's not the first book I've read that includes e-mails as at least a good proportion of the story-telling, and it worked really well in this instance. I'd be interested in finding out what other books the author has written.
Lemuel Maigue
Aug 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
the funniest
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