Entry Level by Julie McIsaac

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...McIsaac pushes them into a laboured, stage-managed scene where the reader cannot empathize. But McIsaac is capable of letting the characters do the work for her: In the second-to-last story, “Sam,” the characters are not stock.
-National Post arts

Synopsis

Entry Level is a graceful and thought-provoking sequence of stories with a flair for the comedy of the workplace. Each story is intense in its way; McIsaac explores the costs of being female, often in the work force.

A group of women telemarketers deal with the escalating absurdity of management’s rules and restrictions; a seasonal-help cashier in a bustling toy store encounters hostile co-workers, perverted customers and fake fifties, and her parents just don’t understand; a preteen girl takes revenge on her lecherous neighbour; two chambermaids clean a hotel room turned upside down in Niagara Falls, Ontario.

Each story turns on the revelation of emotional connections that emerge, often to the surprise of the main character, and the reader. Told in a sparse and taut writing style, Entry Level is a top shelf collection.
 

About Julie McIsaac

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Julie McIsaac graduated with an MA in creative writing from Concordia University in 2011. She has previously published work in Matrix and is currently completing a PhD in English literature at Rutgers University.
 
Published April 15, 2012 by Insomniac Press. 164 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Entry Level
All: 2 | Positive: 0 | Negative: 2

National Post arts

Below average
Reviewed by Sara McCulloch on Jul 20 2012

What ties us down are rules we are expected to obey, and that was where McIsaac faltered as well: Effective writing doesn’t have to tell, it should show.

Read Full Review of Entry Level | See more reviews from National Post arts

National Post arts

Above average
Reviewed by Sara McCulloch on Jul 20 2012

...McIsaac pushes them into a laboured, stage-managed scene where the reader cannot empathize. But McIsaac is capable of letting the characters do the work for her: In the second-to-last story, “Sam,” the characters are not stock.

Read Full Review of Entry Level | See more reviews from National Post arts

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