This Could Hurt
Thursday, January 18, 7pm
Authentic, razor-sharp, and achingly funny, THIS COULD HURT is a masterful novel about work, loneliness, love, and loyalty; about sudden reversals and unexpected windfalls; a novel about life.
Against all odds, Rosa Guerrero became a high-ranking corporate executive. By wielding power with grace and compassion, the longtime HR chief at Ellery Consumer Research has earned the devotion and loyalty of her senior staff.
With the economy in the tank, and unemployment on the rise, Ellery’s future looks grim. While Rosa fights to insulate her people from these harsh business realities, they’re facing crises of their own. Unlike Leo Smalls who has no life outside of Ellery (or Rosa), Rob Hirsch’s existential dread pushes him closer to his “work wife,” Lucy Bender, a brainy, ambitious VP who’s desperate to find meaning in her life. For Kenny Verville, a Wharton MBA, Ellery is merely a stepping-stone to better places—that is, if he can get out of his own way.
Day after day, these heartbreakingly flawed coworkers scheme and dream, fall in and out of love, and chase dreams big and small. But when Rosa, their guiding light, begins to unravel, Leo, Rob, Lucy, and Kenny find themselves challenged in ways beyond their reckoning.
Jillian Medoff’s fourth novel, THIS COULD HURT, is a hilarious dissection of corporate culture offering an insider’s look at five HR colleagues grappling with professional and personal challenges in the aftermath of the 2008 financial collapse.
Along with writing novels, Jillian has a long career in management consulting. She’s worked for a range of employers, including Deloitte, Aon, Revlon and Max Factor. Now, as a senior consultant with a professional services firm in NYC, she advises clients on communication strategies for all aspects of the employee experience, such as workforce engagement, performance management and professional development. She’s fluent in HR practices and procedures, with deep subject matter expertise in benefits and pay programs. (Which means, basically, that she uses phrases like “driving behavior” and “increasing ROI” without irony.)
Jillian is the acclaimed author of I COULDN’T LOVE YOU MORE, HUNGER POINT (both national bestsellers) and GOOD GIRLS GONE BAD. HUNGER POINT was adapted into an original Lifetime movie starring Christina Hendricks and Barbara Hershey.
The eldest daughter of a traveling salesman, Jillian moved 17 times by age 17. She has a BA from Barnard and an MFA from NYU, where she studied with such luminary writers as Mona Simpson, Jonathan Dee, Robert Coover and Alice Walker. She also attended Master Classes with Toni Morrison, Joyce Carol Oates, and Grace Paley. While these authors continue to influence her novels in myriad ways, she suspects few, if any, remember her. A former fellow at MacDowell, Blue Mountain Center, VCCA and Fundacion Valparaiso in Spain, Jillian is hard at work on her next novel, a 21st century BONFIRE OF THE VANITIES.
ADVANCE PRAISE & REVIEWS
INDIE NEXT Pick: “Who knew that a novel about a faltering company’s HR department could be so gripping and compassionate? Anyone who has worked in a company with other people will appreciate the resentments, friendships, and competitions that develop in a long-time team. Medoff does a great job of making the reader care about each and every character.” —Susan Taylor, Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza, Albany NY
SHELF AWARENESS brings big love to THIS COULD HURT: “Corporate America during nine months of the Great Recession is the setting of This Could Hurt, Jillian Medoff’s shrewd and deeply affecting fourth novel …Medoff has a spot-on grasp on the often cutthroat nuances of office politics…She skillfully reveals the modus operandi of the staff as they vie to keep their jobs. Sharply drawn intimate details about the lives of each character add even greater depth and broaden the timeless appeal of this very smart, thoroughly absorbing story..”