Tuesday, December 26, 2006

The Nanny Diaries by Nicola Kraus and Emma McLaughlin

Author: Nicola Kraus and Emma McLaughlin
ISBN # 014100892X

Publisher: Penguin

First Published: 2002

306 pages

Rating: 7/10

Nan, in her early twenties, goes to work for the wealthy X family to help put herself through college, and is shocked by their antics. Between raising the X's son Grayer, keeping on top of her studies, moving house and ensuring Mrs X's day runs smoothly, it's a wonder Nanny ever finds time to hang out with the gorgeous HH on the sixth floor. With divorce on the cards, Nanny finds herself caught up in the X's embittered world of power plays, lies and deciet. As communication rapidly breaks down, will Nanny be able to maintain the mental health of Grayer, despite the onslaught of Personal Problem Consultants, macrobiotic nutritionist and bilingual meals?

This book isn’t going to tax anyone’s brain, but sometimes a light bit of fluff is exactly what’s needed, and this is a fun look at a certain kind of family who hire a regular girl to look after a kid in a home that’s as child-unfriendly as can be. There’s a wry sense of humour here and one gets the feeling that the authors really are drawing from personal experience here, looking back on their own careers an nannies and having a good laugh about the ridiculous situations that are presented to the modern working girl.

It’s written in such a way that you can flick through it a few pages at a time during coffee breaks or on a commute, without ever feeling lost and has enough giggles included to consistently entertain. It’s not high comedy, but it has a gentleness to it, almost an innocence, that is quite appealing in an age where it’s more fashionable to read hard-hitting, gory, murder-mysteries.


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