Monday, November 2, 2020

Book Review: Perfectly Impossible

By Cindy Roesel

"Make sure nothing unexpected ever happens." The answers to her dozens of tasks had to be "not simply correct, but perfect." These were the job descriptions for an assistant in Elizabeth Topp's debut PERFECTLY IMPOSSIBLE.

Anna is a Yale educated MFA painter and collage artist who is the assistant to the Park Avenue Von Bizmark family. She oversees their ten thousand square foot duplex, Hampton's castle called Coolwater, staff, property, vendors, it's practically a whole economy unto itself.

Anna works her days putting out fires here and there when its announced that the megarich, Bambi Von Bizmark will be honored by the New York City Opera. It will finally put Bambi on top of the Upper Eastside social hierarchy of matriarchs and philanthropists. All Anna and her staff have to do is arrange a pre-gala luncheon for one-hundred woman and the gala hundreds will attend. How hard can that be?

Anna is constantly battling an inner fight to believe in herself as an artist, have a real relationship with her boyfriend, Adrian and for her older sister to see her as accomplished. She submits her work to a gallery but her paintings are rejected putting her in the dumps. She decides to put everything she has into the pre-gala luncheon and the Opera Ball. This she can control. Not.

Anna oversees a cast of divas all gathered to work to get this event produced, including helicopering all one-hundred women guests from Manhattan to the luncheon at Coolwater in the Hamptons. Then she needs to get them to write checks, while they're getting drunk from drinking grain alcohol (a mix-up) and attendees are slowly baking, because the heating is on the fritz. It's hailed a success because no one can remember it.

Then it's on the Gala, where all three-and-a-half hours of THE MARRIAGE of FIGARO goes off without a hitch. Afterward, it's onto the dinner. I'm going to leave you there.

PERFECTLY IMPOSSIBLE will show readers what some assistants do and how we should be more grateful that we aren't one. If you are an assistant, go get them! Events go haywire throughout the novel making for great fun. There are a cast of characters that you'll love and some you might love to hate. But hopefully after reading, PERFECTLY IMPOSSIBLE, you'll take your day to day life a little less seriously and love yourself a lot more.

Thanks to Blankenship PR for the book in exchange for an honest review.

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