I was pretty disappointed in this book. It tells a year in the life of one Martin Lukes, a middle management employee, through his emails and text messages. I expected it to be very funny indeed, but at best, it was mildly amusing in places. Martin uses all the boardroom lingo cliches you can imagine – ‘blue sky thinking’, ‘thinking outside the box’, and even thinks up an expression of his own – ‘creovative’ (a mix of creative and innovative).
The main problem with this book is that the main character is completely and utterly dislikeable. One of the reviews in the inside cover says that it is like Bridget Jones….only better. I disagree – Bridget Jones may have been annoying and exasperating, but she was also sweet and endearing, and the reader rooted for her. Martin Lukes is tactless, self absorbed, and never thinks about anyone else at all. I actually found myself eagerly anticipating his comeuppance. Throughout the year, Martin receives life coaching from a mysterious character called Pandora, who clearly knows nothing whatsoever about her subject.
Perhaps due to the fact that the story was told entirely through Martin’s electronic communication explains why the character never felt properly developed. Had we seen more of his ‘offline’ life, he might have been a more sympathetic person, or certainly more well rounded. But he felt like something of a caricature – and not a particularly nice one.
I feel that the main character borrowed heavily from David Brent from ‘The Office’, but was not as amusing. Good concept, but overall the book felt like a letdown.