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Once Upon A Bookshelf

Where Fiction and Reality Meet

The Cubicle Next Door

Author: Siri L Mitchell
Originally Published: 2006
Publisher: Harvest House Publishers

The Cubicle Next DoorJackie Harrison is a civilian working for the US Air Force Academy. She loves her job and her office, but then discovers that she will have to share her office as soon as the new history teacher starts at the Academy – a Lt Col Joseph Gallagher. Jackie is most annoyed by this new development, but both her annoyance at and her fascination with Joe grow as they spend more time in their office together.

When her anonymous blog gets mentioned on the news, Joe’s obsession with this blog (and the blog’s author) begins, and Jackie is worried that he’ll discover she’s the blogger behind The Cubicle Next Door.

The past two weeks have been absolutely insane, and I haven’t really had a chance to even read. Thursday evening I needed a quick read for escapism. As I remembered Rachel mentioning that she got through this in one sitting, and as it looked like complete fluff where I wouldn’t have to think about at all while reading, The Cubicle Next Door won out over all my other possible reads.

Yes, I did get through it in one evening. And I didn’t have to think while reading it. So it was a successful read. Though under different circumstances, I don’t know if I would’ve liked it.

As far as chicklit goes, it wasn’t too bad. The characters were all fairly likable. Jackie was relateable, and her grandmother and grandmother’s friends were completely charming – in fact, I would go so far as to say that the moments that made the book for me involved her grandmother and grandmother’s friends. The main guy, Joe, was alright, but he just seemed to be lacking a little bit of a spark for me. Also, for some reason he actually reminded me greatly of Lt Col Cameron Mitchell from SG-1 (which certainly was not a bad thing).

As far as premise of the book goes, it wasn’t exactly believable. I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why the main character’s blog was so popular or why it made it onto the local news. Even for a humanities story. It didn’t seem realistic, and goodness knows I wouldn’t read it if it were a real blog (though most of the blogs I all read are very topic-specific – books, graphic design or geek culture, so perhaps I’m not the best person to judge that). The blog entries were the weak point in the book and lacked the wit of the rest of the book.

Then there was a bit too much mention about God and religion for my liking. Some Christian books can pull it off well, in that it’s not too in-your-face (like Susan Meissner’s The Shape of Mercy), but in The Cubicle Next Door, it was mentioned so frequently, and characters automatically assumed that other characters were Christian, and it just so happened that they all were – which just came across as completely unrealistic to me.

But other than that, it wasn’t too bad as far as chicklit goes. It was predictable, but it was pure fluff, which is exactly what I needed.

The Bottom Line: It’s not something I’ll read again, and I don’t know if I’ll attempt any of Mitchell’s other books, but it was a good escape from a crazy week.

Posted by Courtney Wilson @ 4:39 pm May 17, 2009.
Category: Chick Lit
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  • http://myreadingbooks.blogspot.com Kailana

    Sometimes all you need is a good escape. That’s why books like this sells, right? :)