In Her Shoes () is a work of Jewish American literature by Jennifer Weiner. It tells the story of two sisters and their estranged grandmother. The novel was a. In Her Shoes book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. Rose Feller is thirty; a successful lawyer with high hopes of a rel. Weiner, whose debut novel Good in Bed was an instant bestseller, is back with another exuberantly confident offering. Twenty-eight-year-old.
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In Her Shoes: A Novel [Jennifer Weiner] on saicumspecsacont.gq *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. From Jennifer Weiner comes a story of two sisters with nothing in. PART ONE In Her Shoes ONE "Baby," groaned the guy Ted? Tad? something like that and crushed his lips against the side of her neck, shoving her face. Elaine Showalter salutes In Her Shoes, a sensitively written second novel from Jennifer Weiner.
Ella closed her eyes. She should go outside and tell them not to be afraid, that the chameleons had more to fear from their clumsy, sweaty boy-palms and boy-fingers than the boys had to fear from the chameleons. She should go and tell them to stop shouting before Mr. Boehr in 6-B came out and started yelling about his insomnia. Instead, she turned her face from the window before she let her In Her Shoes 35 self open the blinds and look at the boys. Children hurt.
Ella set her lips in a tight line and walked resolutely toward the bathroom. She wouldn't go down that road today. She wouldn't think about the daughter-who-wasgone, or the grandchildren she would never get to know, about the life that was snatched away from her, excised as cleanly and completely as a tumor, leaving not even a scar for her to cherish, to remember it by.
Sure, she knew that everyone thought his or her boss was crazy. But now, filing into the conference room for the pep rally that Don Dommel had instituted as a Friday afternoon ritual, Rose was once again faced with the possibility that one of her firm's founding partners wasn't just eccentric or odd, or any of those polite adjectives reserved for powerful men, but he was actually honest-to-God nuts.
He had frizzy gingery hair and his skin, pale as skim milk, was a badge of honor in this place, the sure sign that he was making his minimum bill In Her Shoes 37 able hours and, hence, not getting out much. Simon Something, Rose thought. Rose shrugged at him, and slumped in her seat. How many law firms had pep rallies, anyhow? How many associates had received custom-made skateboards with the words "DOMMEL LAW" painted on the top, instead of the customary cash, for their holiday bonuses last year?
How many managing partners delivered weekly speeches couched almost exclusively in sports metaphors, followed by an overamplified rendition of "I Believe I Can Fly"?
How many law firms had theme music at all? Not many, Rose thought sourly. Rose gave another shrug, hoping, as she did each week, that Dommel's Xtreme gaze wouldn't fall on her. Don Dommel had always been a jock, Rose knew. He'd jogged through the seventies, felt the burn during the eighties, even finished a few triathalons before plunging headlong into the brave new world of extreme sports and taking his law firm along with him.
At some point past his fiftieth birthday he'd decided that conventional exercise, no matter how strenuous, just wasn't enough. Don Dommel didn't just want to be fit, he wanted to be edgy and hip, radical and cool. Don Dommel wanted to be a fifty-three-year-old lawyer on a skateboard.
Don Dommel, apparently, saw no contradiction between those two things. He bought two specially-made skateboards and found a semi-homeless kid who seemed to live in Love Park to coach him technically, the kid worked in the mail room, but nobody'd ever seen so much as the tip of his dreadlocks down there. He constructed a wooden ramp inside of the law firm's parking garage, spent every lunch hour on it, even after he'd broken his wrist, bruised his tailone, and developed a limp that had him lurching through the firm's halls like an imperfectly rehearsed drag queen.
And it wasn't enough that he himself wanted to become an urban warrior. Don Dommel had to extend his vision to the entirety 38 Jennifer weiner of the firm. One Friday, Rose had come into work and found a nylon jersey shoved into her mail slot, with her last name on the back above the words I Can Fly! A firm-wide e-mail said that all associates should wear them every Friday. The week after that, once she'd reluctantly tugged the jersey over her shoulders, Rose had put her mug under the coffee dispenser only to find that it, plus all of the firm's water-coolers and soda machines, were dispensing only Gatorade.
Which, the last time Rose had checked, wasn't caffeinated. Which meant it was going to do her no good at all. So now she sat miserably in a seat in the center of the third row with her fly jersey pulled over her suit jacket, sipping warm sports beverage and wishing desperately that she had coffee. Did you actually just say 'psst'? Are we in a detective novel?
Rose's nose twitched at the scent of coffee. Her mouth watered. She hesitated, looked around, considered the breaches of etiquette involved in sipping someone else's coffee, then decided that if she didn't get some caffeine, she'd be a jittery, worthless mess for the rest of the day.
She ducked her head and gulped.
He nodded, just as Don Dommel's white-hot gaze fell upon him. A ripple of laughter started in the back of the room. Don Dommel stood on the stage looking bewildered, as if his audience of loyal associates had suddenly turned into donkeys. I'd be happy to play guard," Simon continued.
Don Dommel opened his mouth, then shut it, then lurched across the stage. Rose had pulled her jersey off over her suit jacket and wadded it into her purse before his mouth was shut. She caught up with him by the receptionist's desk. He closed the door and whirled her into his arms. Rose was gone. Maggie walked to the bathroom, where she drank thirty-two ounces of water and continued with her in-depth examination of her habitat, starting with the medicine cabinet, where the shelves were so well-stocked it seemed as if her sister expected a dire medical emergency to befall Philadelphia, and that she alone would be called upon to play Florence Nightingale to the city's entire population.
Here was a girl who made good use of the coupons at CVS, Maggie thought, as she sorted through Ace bandages and multivitamins, calcium tablets and dental floss, rubbing alcohol and hydrogen peroxide, prescriptionstrength benzoyl peroxide and four unopened toothbrushes. Where was the eyeliner? Where were the blush and the concealer that her sister so desperately needed? Maggie hadn't found anything cosmetic except for a single half-used lipstick.
What did Rose think? That somebody was going to sneak into her apartment in the dead of night, tie her up, put makeup on her face, and then leave? It was probably on sale, Maggie snorted, helping herself to a bottle of Midol. The bathroom was also minus a scale. Which wasn't a surprise, given Rose's history with bathroom scales. When they were teenagers, Sydelle had taped a laminated chart on the girls' bathroom wall. Each Saturday morning, Rose would stand on the scale, her eyes shut and her face impassive, as Sydelle recorded the number and then sat on the toilet seat, quizzing Rose about what she'd eaten during the week.
Even now, Maggie could hear her stepmother's too-sweet voice. You had a salad? Well, what kind of dressing was on it? Was it fat free? Are you sure? Rose, I'm only doing this to help you. I've got your best interests at heart. Yeah, right, Maggie thought. As if Sydelle was ever interested in anyone but herself, and her own daughter.
In the bedroom, Maggie pulled on a pair of her sister's sweatpants and continued her inventory, gathering what she called Information. Fried used to tell her, back in elementary school. Fried, with her gray curls and impressive shelf of a bosom, with her beaded eyeglass chain and knitted sweater vests, had taught Maggie what was euphemistically called "enrichment" and what was known to the students as "special ed" from second grade through sixth.
She was a kind, grandmotherly woman who'd become Maggie's ally, especially during her first months in a new school, in a new state. So if you don't know what a word means, what do you do? Fried smiled. It's all about finding solutions. Solutions that work for you. Would you go home?
Skip the concert? No," Mrs. Fried had said, before Maggie'd had a chance to ask her who was playing at this theoretical concert so she could figure out how much effort it was worth. And you're smart enough to do it really well. Fried's alternative strategies taught Maggie to add numbers if she couldn't multiply them, to chart out a paragraph's meaning, circling the subject, underlining the verbs.
In the years since school, Maggie had come up with a few new strategies of her own, like Information, which could be defined as knowing things about people that they didn't want or expect you to know. Information was always useful, and it was usually easy to come by. Through the years Maggie secretly perused credit-card bills and diaries, bank statements and old photographs. In high school, she'd located a battered copy of Forever between Rose's mattress and box spring.
Rose had turned over her allowance for almost an entire school year before deciding that she didn't care if Maggie told her father how she'd dog-eared the pages with sex scenes.
Maggie snooped over to her sister's desk. There were gas bill, electric bill, phone bill, and cable bill, all neatly paper-clipped together, the return envelopes already bearing stamps and address labels. Here was a receipt from Tower Records, which told her that Rose had downloadd and worse, paid full price for a copy of George Michael's greatest hits. Maggie pocketed it, sure that it would be useful, even if she wasn't sure how.
A receipt from Saks for a pair of shoes. Three hundred and twelve dollars. A schedule of classes at the gym, six months out of date. No surprise there. Maggie closed the drawer and moved on to what was sure to be the depressing terrain of Rose's closet.
She flipped through the hangers, shaking her head at the In Her Shoes 43 clothes that ranged in shade from black to brown, with the occasional gray sweater thrown in for fun. Drab, drab, drab. Boring suits all in a row, and dowdy sweater sets, a half-dozen skirts designed to hit Rose in the dead center of her calves, as if she'd picked them out to give her legs the illusion of maximum thickness.
Maggie could have helped her. But Rose didn't want help. Rose thought her life was fine. Rose thought it was everyone else who had the problems. There was a time, when they were little girls, that people thought they were twins, with their matching pigtails and identical brown eyes and the defiant way their jaws poked forward.
Well, not anymore. She had shirts in her closet from Lane Bryant, which Maggie didn't even want to touch, although she knew that fat wasn't contagious. And Rose just didn't care. Her hair, shoulder-length, was usually shoved into an untidy bun or ponytail or, worse, done up in one of those plastic clips that everyone else in the world had tacitly agreed to stop wearing five years ago.
As always, what she saw dazzled her and made her feel sick, like a little kid who'd gorged on too much Halloween candy. Rose, fat, lazy, unfashionable Rose, Rose who couldn't be bothered to exfoliate or moisturize or polish her fingernails, had somehow managed to acquire dozens of pairs of the absolutely most perfect shoes in the world.
There were flats and stilettos and high-heeled Mary Janes, suede loafers so buttery soft you wanted to rub them against your cheek, a pair of Chanel sandals that were little more than a slim leather sole and wisps of gold wire and ribbon.
There were 44 Jennifer weiner knee-high Gucci boots in glossy black, ankle-high Stephane Kelian boots in cinnamon, a pair of crimson cowgirl boots with hand-stitched jalapeno peppers winding up the sides.
Maggie held her breath and eased them on.
It wasn't fair, she thought, stalking into the kitchen in the Pradas. Where was Rose going to wear a pair of shoes like these, anyhow? What was the point? She scowled and opened a cabinet.
Whole Wheat Total. Golden raisins and brown rice. Jesus Christ, she thought, wrinkling her nose. Was it National Healthy Colon week? And there were no Fritos, no Cheetos, no Doritos. Ice cream had always been her sister's goto comfort food, Maggie thought, grabbing a spoon and proceeding back to the couch, where a section of newspaper sat at the center of the coffee table, with a red pen laid beside it. Maggie picked it up. Today's classified ads, thoughtfully provided by big sister Rose.
Of course. Well, she thought, this was a pretty pass. That was one of the things Mrs. Fried used to say. Fried would clasp her hands across her chest and shake her head until her eyeglass chain rattled and say, "Well, this is a pretty pass!
Fried couldn't have predicted this, thought Maggie, eating ice cream with one hand and circling classified ads with the other. Not even Mrs. Fried could have seen Maggie Feller's downfall coming as swiftly as it had, so that Maggie still felt as if In Her Shoes 45 somewhere between the ages of fourteen and sixteen she'd walked off the edge of a cliff and had been falling ever since. Elementary school and junior high had been fine, she remembered, spooning the cool creaminess even faster past her lips and not noticing when she accidentally dropped a chocolate-covered walnut on the shoe.
She'd had to go to "enrichment" during recess three days a week, but not even that had mattered much, because she was still the prettiest, most fun girl in her class, the girl with the cutest outfits, the best Halloween costumes that she'd make herself, the most interesting ideas of what to do during recess. And after her mother died and they'd moved to New Jersey, when her father would be at work in the afternoons and Sydelle would be off at some volunteer committee thing and Rose, of course, would be busy with the chess club or debate team, she'd been the girl with access to an empty house and an unlocked liquor cabinet.
She'd been popular. It was Rose who'd been the nerd, the geek, the loser, Rose who'd skulked around with her thick glasses hiding half her face and dandruff silting her shoulders, Rose who'd been the one the girls had laughed at. She could close her eyes and still remember one afternoon at recess. She'd been in fourth grade and Rose was in sixth.
Maggie was heading to play hopscotch with Marissa Nussbaum and Kim Pratt when Rose had strolled right through a game of dodgeball, oblivious, holding a book up to her eyes. Move, Rose, Maggie thought as hard as she could, as Kim and Marissa tittered.
Rose kept walking, not picking up the pace, when another one of the big boys picked up the ball and threw it at her, as hard as he could, grunting with the effort. He'd been aiming for her body, but his aim wasn't good, and he hit Rose in the back of her head.
Rose's glasses went flying. Her books flew out of her arms as she staggered forward, got her feet tangled, and fell flat on her face. Maggie's heart stopped beating. She stood as if she'd been 46 Jennifer weiner frozen, stood as still as the circle of sixth-grade boys, who'd looked at each other uneasily, as if they were trying to decide whether this was still funny, or whether they'd really hurt this girl and could get in trouble.
And then they were all laughing, all the sixth-grade boys, and then all the kids who'd been watching, as Rose, of course, started to cry, and then wiped the snot off her face with a palm that was bleeding from her fall and started groping around for her glasses.
Maggie had stood there, part of her knowing she shouldn't let them do that, and part of her thinking, cruelly, Let Rose figure it out. She's the one who's such a loser. She brought this on herself. Plus, Maggie wasn't the one who fixed things. Rose was. So she'd stood, watching, for what felt like an unbearably long time, until Rose found her glasses. One of the lenses was cracked, Maggie saw, as Rose lurched to her feet, gathering her books, and.
Her sister's pants had split right down the back and Maggie and everyone else could see her underwear, her Holly Hobbie underwear, which raised the pointing and laughing to a hysterical pitch. Oh, God, thought Maggie, feeling sick, why did Rose have to wear those today? The laughter built. Rose's eyes swept the playground, past the kickball game, past the kids on the swing sets and jungle gym, through the big Sids, the fifth and sixth graders shrieking and clutching each other as they laughed at her, until finally she caught sight of Maggie, standing between Kim and Marissa on the little section of grass beside the flower bed that was, by unspoken consent, reserved for the most popular girls.
Rose squinted at Maggie, and Maggie could read the hatred and misery in her sister's eyes as clearly as if Rose had walked over and shouted in her face. I should help, a voice inside of her whispered again. But Maggie just stood there, watching, listening to the other kids laugh, In Her Shoes 47 thinking that this was somehow some dark part of the bargain that had made her the pretty one.
She was safe, Maggie thought fiercely, as Rose wiped her face, gathered her books, and, ignoring the taunts and laughter and the singsonged catcalls of "Hol-ly! Maggie'd never make the mistake of wandering through a dodgeball game and she'd certainly never wear cartoon-character underwear.
And then, as fast as a dodgeball flying through the air to whack her unsuspecting head, everything changed. When, exactly? Her fourteenth year, at the tail end of eighth grade, in the gap between junior high, where she'd ruled, and high school, where everything had fallen apart. It had started with the standardized assessment test.
Fried's junior-high replacement had said in a falsely cheerful voice. The new "enrichment" teacher was ugly, with caked-on makeup and a wart next to her nose. She'd told Maggie that she could take an untimed version of the test. You're a smart girl, Mrs. Fried had told her a dozen times. But Mrs. Fried was gone, back in the elementary school.
High school was going to be different. Results kept confidential! She wasn't supposed to have seen her scores, but her teacher had left a copy on the desk, and Maggie had peeked, first trying to read the words upside down and then just grabbing the thing and flipping it around so 48 Jennifer weiner that she could read it.
The words hit her like a hammer. Rose, sitting in the corner of Sydelle's white-on-white living room, had looked up from Watership Down. I don't even care. And why'd you have to tell her? Fried had always said. No, she didn't need a tutor, no she didn't want to go to private school, she had friends, unlike some people she could name, she had friends and she wasn't stupid no matter what the test said, and plus even if she was stupid, she'd rather be stupid than ugly like four-eyes in the corner, even if she was stupid, that was okay, it was no biggie, she'd be fine.
But she wasn't fine. When she started high school, her friends were placed in the honors-level courses, and Maggie had been sent to the remedial classes, with no friendly Mrs. Fried to tell her that she wasn't a dummy or a retard, that her brain just worked a little differently, and that they'd figure out tricks to get her through.
Cavetti, who wore cockeyed wigs and too much perfume, or Mrs. Learey, who'd give them in-class reading assignments and then spend the entire period filling photo albums with endless pictures of her grandchildren. Which in this fancy town were often interpreted as the same thing.
Well, Maggie figured, if she was someone's punishment, she'd act like punishment. She stopped bringing her books to class and started toting a toolboxsized makeup kit instead. Multiple-choice quizzes were all these teachers ever came up with. Maggie would shake her head without lifting her eyes from her makeup mirror. And her friends moved farther and farther away from her with each new school year. She tried for a while, and Kim and Marissa tried, too, but eventually the gap got too wide.
They were playing field hockey, they were joining student council, they were taking SAT prep courses and visiting colleges, and she'd been left behind. By sophomore year, Maggie decided that if the girls were going to ignore her, the guys certainly wouldn't. She started wearing her hair piled high and her cleavage leveraged higher by lace underwire bras that peeked through her shirts.
She'd arrived for the first day of school in low-slung jeans that barely clung to the ridge of her hips, high-heeled black leather boots, and a consignment-store lace bustier beneath the army jacket she'd swiped from her father.
She took her cues from Madonna, whom she idolized, Madonna, who was just starting to have her videos played on MTV. They both had dead mothers. They were both beautiful, both talented dancers who'd studied tap and jazz since they were little girls. They were both street-smart, with sex appeal to spare. Boys buzzed around Maggie like flies, downloading her packs of cigarettes, inviting her to parties where no parents were present, keeping her cup filled, holding her hand, walking her into an unused bedroom or the backseat of a car when it got late.
It took a while for Maggie to notice that they weren't calling, or asking her to dances, or even saying hello to her in the halls. None of them were worth her tears. And they'd all be sorry, ten years down the road, when she was famous and they were nothings, stranded in this shitty little town, fat and ugly and unfamous, not special at all. So that was high school. Cringing around the edges of the popular crowd like some kicked dog still holding on to the memories of the days when they'd petted and praised her.
Parties on weekends at the house of whoever's parents were away. Beer and wine, joints or pills, and they'd be drunk and, eventually, she figured it was easier if she was drunk, too, if things were a little blurry around the edges and she could imagine seeing what she wanted in their eyes. And Rose. But she did change in smaller ways. She stopped having dandruff, for one thing, thanks to Maggie's not-so-subtle trick of leaving large bottles of Head and Shoulders in the shower.
Rose was in the honors classes, Rose got straight A's. Maggie would have dismissed all of those things as further signs of her sister's social hopelessness except that those accomplishments had started to matter.
Maggie had just rolled her eyes in an unspoken "whatever. Like Rose was the only person who'd ever succeeded in spite of a dead mother. Well, Maggie had a dead mother, too, but did she get extra points for that? No, she did not. She just got questions. From neighbors. From teachers. From everyone who knew her sister. So Rose graduated from Princeton while Maggie put in a few half-hearted semesters at the local community college.
Rose had gone to law school, and Maggie had waitressed at a pizza parlor, done baby-sitting and housecleaning, dropped out of bartending school when the instructor tried to stick his tongue in her ear after the lesson on martinis. Rose was plain, and fat, and frumpy, and up until this morning Maggie had never known her to have a boyfriend except for, like, ten minutes in law school. Yet somehow she was the one with the great apartment well, the apartment that could have been great if Maggie had decorated it , and with money and friends, the one people looked at with respect.
And this guy, 52 Jennifer weiner Jim Whatever, was cute in a semi-nerdy way, and Maggie just bet that he was rich, too. It wasn't fair, thought Maggie, stalking back to the kitchen. It wasn't fair their mother had died. It wasn't fair that she'd somehow used up her handful of good years by junior high and was now living in her sister's shadow, doomed to watch Rose get everything she wanted, while she got nothing at all.
She crumpled up the empty container of ice cream, gathered the newspaper, and was getting ready to toss them both when something in the paper caught her eye.
It was the magic word: Maggie dropped the icecream carton and turned her full attention to the newspaper. She scanned the story as rapidly as she could. December 1. Open call. In New York. She could be there! She'd tell Rose she had a job interview, which was technically sort of the truth, and she'd get Rose to lend her money for a bus ticket, and clothes.
She'd need an outfit. She'd have to download something new; she could see that instantly; nothing she had was even remotely right. Maggie folded the newspaper carefully and hurried to her sister's closet to see which shoes she'd wear to the Big Apple. Sobel perched on a chair, crossed her ankles, and clasped her hands in her lap. She was a tiny woman with blue hair and a blue wool cardigan sweater and blue veins pulsing in her hands.
He gave her what he hoped was a reassuring smile. She gave him a tentative nod. Sobel could see what her review looked like, laid out on the page. Sobel gave another trembly little nod. It looks like it should be easy to get to, but my husband, Irving, had a very difficult time making the left-hand turn. Sobel gave another nod, this one slightly more assertive. Lewis kept reading. The air conditioner is turned up very high, so you should bring a sweater if you go to Mangiamo's. The minestrone soup was not the way I make it.
It had kidney beans, which neither I nor Irving enjoy. The Caesar salad was good, but it is made with anchovies, so if you are allergic to fish, you should get the house salad instead. Sobel was leaning forward eagerly, nodding along, repeating the words in a low, breathless whisper. I had the spaghetti and meatballs, because I thought Irving would eat that. Sure enough, the chicken was hard for him to chew, so he had my meatballs, which were soft. Sobel, who was leaning forward, eyes bright.
Sobel repeated. Sobel drew herself up straight, a trembling reed of indignation. Like, the air-conditioning, and telling people to bring a sweater. That's a very, very useful detail. But the section on the soup. He thought it probably would. He wasn't a handsome man, he knew. He had a mirror, and while his eyes weren't so great anymore, he could still tell that he was much more Walter Matthau than Paul Newman.
Even his earlobes had wrinkles. But the smile was still working. Sobel sniffed. But she was looking decidedly less offended. Rabinowitz decide whether to go there for dinner. Ella, Lewis noticed with great relief, neither trembled or nodded. She wasn't nearly as ancient, or fragile, as Mrs. She had clear brown eyes and reddish hair that she wore pulled back in a twist, and he'd never once seen her in polyester pants, which were preferred by most of the Acres's female residents.
Lewis shook his head. Would he have had a little bit of a crush on Ella even if she wasn't the best writer at the Golden Acres Gazette? Probably, Lewis decided. Except he didn't think she was interested.
The times he'd invited her for coffee to talk about story ideas, she'd seemed happy to come along, and just as happy when the coffee was gone and she could tell him goodbye.
It was polite, Lewis thought, but it was still a refusal. Had she read that book that all the women were passing around the pool a couple years ago, the one that talked about playing hard to get and had caused eighty-six-yearold Mrs. Asher to hang up on him, mid-edit, after declaring that she was a creature unlike any other and that, as such, it was incumbent upon her to end all phone calls with men?
You're the only one who made your deadline. As usual," Lewis said. Ella gave him a faint smile and headed for the door. Maybe it was his looks, he thought glumly.
Sharla had bought him a bulldog calendar for one of the anniversaries they'd celebrated together in Florida, and he'd accused her of trying to tell him something.
She'd given him a resounding kiss on his cheek and told him that while his modeling career was probably dead in the water, she loved him anyhow. Lewis shook his head, hoping to clear away the memories, and picked up Ella's poem. SIX Rose Feller leaned across the table. But every deposition she'd ever attended had started out with the lawyer in charge saying "the usual stipulations," and so she said it, too. Today I'm representing the Veeder Trucking Company and Stanley Willet, the comptroller of Veeder, who's present and sitting to my left.
Wayne LeGros refused to meet her eyes. LeGros, could you begin by giving us your name and address? In Philadelphia. In truth, she sort of felt sorry for the guy.
She'd never been deposed, except in law school, in mock trial, but she was sure it wasn't fun. Majestic," said loquacious Mr. My client is contending that you owe them I've already had the court reporter mark it as Plaintiff's Exhibit fifteen-A.
His attorney raised his eyebrows at him. Rose slid another sheet of paper across the table. Another dirty look from his attorney. Another "yeah. It wasn't the stuff of Grisham thrillers, she thought as she slogged onward, but if she was lucky it would get the job done. He ducked his head. Spun his ring.
Things they owed my dispatcher," he said, biting off each syllable. It's your turn to tell your story.
Fifth and Tasker. Ask him about how 60 Jennifer weiner she never got paid! Ask him about how when she left the company, he said he'd pay her vacation and sick days, and never did! Rose nodded. The court reporter raised her eyebrows. I could make a few calls Depositions made her nervous, and being nervous made her have to pee, and. His girlfriend used to work for your guy. As best I can tell, she left without giving notice and figured she was entitled to all of her vacation and sick pay. Veeder told her to forget about it, and I think that my guy figured he could just bill Veeder for what she said she was owed.
All of it. This has gone on for three years," said Rose. LeGros's lawyer winced. She felt like doing a dance. Instead she returned to Stan Willet, who was staring at her diplomas. The author utilizes a rather unusual technique when she tells the story through shifting points of view. How did this affect your reading of the story? Why might the author have chosen to do this?
Do you think there are insights that could only have come out through multiple perspectives, or do you think the author wanted the ambiguity and clashing perspective that shifting points of view can elicit in a reader? In many ways, this is really a story about growth, change, and transformation. Discuss the ways that virtually all of the characters alter their old, comfortable ways of being, acting, and thinking or lack of thinking, in Maggie's case throughout the course of this story.
How easy does it seem for the characters to change? Would you consider intense pain or disillusionment with a person or a job to be the main catalyst for much of this change, or do you think something else sparks it? Body image, for both sisters, obviously affects how they view the world around them.
While Rose, at least in the beginning of the story, seems almost apologetic about her body, Maggie uses hers like a weapon, moving through the novel with a confidence that borders on aggressive. In what ways do you think their physical bodies, or perhaps the reactions that they receive from others regarding their physical bodies, helps create the people that they ultimately become? Early in the novel, we get a rather painful and disturbing view of Rose's childhood during the scene on the dodgeball court.
And while we would expect, or at least hope, that her sister might step in and try to protect Rose in such a humiliating moment, Maggie stands watching, obviously in pain, but frozen. In fact, Maggie goes so far as to blame her sister, asking herself, "Why did she have to wear those [underwear] today" and reassuring herself that "[Rose] brought this on herself. Do you think that there were mitigating circumstances that help to explain this cruelty?
Forgiveness plays a central role in this story, as many of the characters struggle with their need for family and their inability to let bygones be bygones. To what degree do you think forgiveness paves the way for the story's resolution? Would you have forgiven Maggie? If you were Ella, would you have forgiven Michael Feller for having shut you out of Rose and Maggie's childhood? This certainly fit the bill.
From the get-go we have a stereotypical plot: two sisters one pretty but dumb and the other smart but plain who are insanely jealous of one another despite their bond. However, this stereotype exists because there is a component of jealousy in many same-gender sibling relationships. No matter how much the two love one another, siblings often feel as though they are being compared to one another by parents, family, friends, society at large, and examined for deficiencies that become obvious when compared against their genetic foil.
The smart one always wants to be pretty; the pretty one always wants to be smart. The athletic one secretly wants to be a book nerd; the book nerd always wants to be able to dunk a basketball. The one with curly hair always wants straight hair; the one with straight hair longs for curly locks.