In an unnamed New York-based company, the employees are getting restless as everything around them unravels. There’s Pru, the former grad student turned spreadsheet drone; Laars, the hysteric whose work anxiety stalks him in his tooth-grinding dreams; and Jack II, who distributes unwanted backrubs–aka “jackrubs”–to his co-workers.
On a Sunday, one of them is called at home. And the Firings begin.
Rich with Orwellian doublespeak, filled with sabotage and romance, this astonishing literary debut is at once a comic delight and a narrative tour de force. It’s a novel for anyone who has ever worked in an office and wondered: “Where does the time go? Where does the life go? And whose banana is in the fridge?”
Praise for PERSONAL DAYS
"Witty and appealing...Anyone who has ever groaned to hear 'impact' used as a verb will cheer as Park skewers the avatars of corporate speak, hellbent on debasing the language....Park has written what one of his characters calls 'a layoff narrative' for our times. As the economy continues its free fall, Park's book may serve as a handy guide for navigating unemployment and uncertainty. Does anyone who isn't a journalist think there can't be two books on the same subject at the same time? We need as many as we can get right now." — The New York Times Book Review
"Never have the minutiae of office life been so lovingly cataloged and collated." —"Three First Novels that Just Might Last," — Time
A "comic and creepy début...Park transforms the banal into the eerie, rendering ominous the familiar request "Does anyone want anything from the outside world?" — The New Yorker
"The modern corporate office is to Ed Park's debut novel Personal Days what World War II was to Joseph Heller's Catch-22 —a theater of absurdity and injustice so profound as to defy all reason....Park may be in line to fill the shoes left by Kurt Vonnegut and other satirists par excellence."—Samantha Dunn, Los Angeles Times
"In Personal Days Ed Park has crafted a sometimes funny, sometimes heartbreaking, but always adroit novel about office life...Sharp and lovely language." — Newsweek
"A warm and winning fiction debut." — Publishers Weekly
"I laughed until they put me in a mental hospital. But Personal Days is so much more than satire. Underneath Park's masterly portrait of wasted workaday lives is a pulsating heart, and an odd, buoyant hope." — Gary Shteyngart, author of Absurdistan
"The funniest book I've read about the way we work now." –William Poundstone, author of Fortune's Formula
"Ed Park joins Andy Warhol and Don DeLillo as a master of the deadpan vernacular." —Helen DeWitt, author of The Last Samurai
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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|Title of Suspense & Thrillers eBook: Personal Days|
|Release Date: 05-13-2008|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
|Publisher: Random House Publishing Group|
This eBook download is available in the following formats:
|Parent title||Personal Days|
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On the surface, it’s relaxed. There was a time when we all dressed crisply, but something’s changed this summer. Now while the weather lasts we wear loose pants, canvas sneakers, clogs. Pru slips on flip-flops under her desk. It’s so hot out and thus every day is potentially casual Friday. We have carte blanche to wear T-shirts featuring the comical logos of exterminating companies, advertising slogans from the early ’80s. Where’s the beef? We dress like we don’t make much money, which is true for at least half of us. The trick is figuring out which half. We go out for drinks together one or two nights a week, sometimes three, to take the edge off. Three is too much. We make careful note of who buys a round, who sits back and lets the booze magically appear. It’s possible we can’t stand each other but at this point we’re helpless in the company of outsiders. Sometimes one of the guys will come to work in a coat and tie, just to freak the others out. On these days the guard in the lobby will joke, Who died? And we will laugh or pretend to laugh.
In summer the Sprout, our boss, suggests we form a softball team. His name is actually Russell. We refer to him as the Sprout, because
Russell ->Brussels->brussels-> sprouts-> the Sprout.
No one knows who came up with the name first.
We’re incredibly mature.
Also once in a while he has a bit of comb-proof hair sprouting from his scalp’s left rear quadrant.
Jonah says it’s hard to take the Sprout seriously because he’s always using i.e. and e.g. in his sentences, vigorously but in