One admission can change your life…forever.
When ambitious grad student Kate Pearson’s handsome French “almost fiancé” ditches her, she definitely does not roll with the punches, despite the best efforts of family and friends. It seems that nothing will get Kate out of pajamas and back into the world.
Miraculously, one cringe-worthy job interview leads to a position in the admissions department at the revered Hudson Day School. Kate’s instantly thrown into a highly competitive and occasionally absurd culture, where she interviews all types of children: suitable, wildly unsuitable, charming, loathsome, ingratiating, or spoiled beyond all measure. And then there are the Park Avenue parents who refuse to take no for an answer.
As Kate begins to learn there’s no room for self-pity or nonsense during the height of admissions season or life itself, her sister and friends find themselves keeping secrets, dropping bombshells, and arguing with each other about how to keep Kate on her feet. Meanwhile, Kate seems to be doing very nicely, thank you, and is even beginning to find out that her broken heart is very much on the mend. Welcome to the world of Small Admissions.
I got an ARC of this book so long ago that I don’t really want to look up how long it’s been exactly. It sounded like something light and fun, but it wasn’t until I was in Spain recently that I finally got around to reading it. It wasn’t quite what I expected, but not necessarily in a bad way.
Even though Kate is the main character, the book is told from the various points of view of her friends and family. At the beginning this adds to the story, but eventually it seemed a little unnecessary. I think I would have been invested in Kate’s character a lot more if I hadn’t always looked at her life from the outside. That said, the best feature of this book is its emphasis on the fact that everyone has their own, unique reasons for acting the way they do, and the insights from various characters help to underline that. It’s not only Kate who has to take responsibility for her life and her actions, but also the other characters. Even though I would have preferred to read more from the protagonist’s POV, the supporting cast in this book is great.
In terms of the plot, it was difficult to determine what it actually was at first. Not that much happens until the end, but when something happens it is often not shown in much detail. It’s nice to see a book which features mostly on the characters’ development, but it did feel like important events were skipped more often than not, which didn’t help with getting invested in the characters’ lives. I still cared about the characters enough to enjoy the book though, and it was nice to read about someone going through the long process of getting back to their feet after falling apart.
I wasn’t as invested as I could have been, but I still enjoyed the book, so I’ll give it three cupcakes. If you don’t mind POV switching, I can recommend this as a nice summer read.