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Thursday, September 26, 2013

Book Review - The Partner Track by Helen Wan

About The Book:

A young attorney must choose between the prestige of partnership and  the American Dream that she—and her immigrant parents—have come so close to achieving in The Partner Track, a riveting debut from Helen Wan.

In the eyes of her corporate law firm, Ingrid Yung is a “two-fer.” As a Chinese-American woman about to be ushered into the elite rank of partner, she’s the face of Parsons Valentine & Hunt LLP’s recruiting brochures—their treasured "Golden Girl."

But behind the firm’s welcoming façade lies the scotch-sipping, cigar-smoking old-boy network that shuts out lawyers like Ingrid. To compensate, Ingrid gamely plays in the softball league, schmoozes in the corporate cafeteria, and puts in the billable hours—until a horrifically offensive performance at the law firm’s annual summer outing throws the carefully constructed image way out of equilibrium.
Scrambling to do damage control, Parsons Valentine announces a new “Diversity Initiative” and commands a reluctant Ingrid to spearhead the effort, taking her priority away from the enormous deal that was to be the final step in securing partnership. For the first time, Ingrid finds herself at odds with her colleagues—including her handsome, golden-boy boyfriend—in a clash of class, race, and sexual politics.

My Thoughts:

As a former paralegal, I was really interested in Helen Wan's debut novel, The Partner Track - I wanted to see how close she got the politics and machinations of a law firm to being true to form - and I'm glad to say that she absolutely hits it out of the park with this fascinating story!

With a full cast of lively and interesting characters, this fast-paced, well-written story grabs the reader's attention from the very first paragraph and doesn't let go to the very surprising but very satisfying end. I loved Wan's heroine, Ingrid Yung - she's smart, kinda sexy and very savvy in both her personal life and her professional life.  I'd love to read more about her future cases and life!

There are elements of several genres represented with this novel - a little romance, a little mystery, a good bit of humor and a lot of action.  I highly recommend this debut book to anyone who is looking for a good, satisfying read.

About The Author:

HELEN WAN is Associate General Counsel at the Time Inc. division of Time Warner Inc. Before that, she practiced corporate law and media law at law firms in New York.  Born in California and raised near Washington, D.C., Wan is a graduate of Amherst College and the University of Virginia School of Law. Her essays and reviews of fiction have been published in The Washington Post and elsewhere. She lives in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, with her husband and son.

Check out her website at www.helenwan.com

My thanks to Wunderkind PR for providing the review copy of this book. I was not compensated for my opinion.

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