THIS COULD HURT
A funny and deeply felt novel that illuminates the pivotal role of work in our lives—a riveting fusion of THE NEST, UP IN THE AIR, and THEN WE CAME TO THE END that captures the emotional complexities of five HR colleagues trying to balance ambition, hope, and fear as their small company is buffeted by economic forces that threaten to upend them.
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.
ADVANCE PRAISE & REVIEWS
The workplace novel has long been the territory of male novelists—well, no more. Medoff’s provocative, comic portrait of modern American office life is a study of power, and how having it and wanting it, tests the bonds coworkers share far beyond the break room. It not only upends female stereotypes like a cheap desk, it also earns Medoff a place at the table. And all for seventy cents on the male dollar.
—ELISSA SCHAPPELL, author of BLUEPRINTS FOR BUILDING BETTER GIRLS
Jillian Medoff is one of those talented writers who make other less talented writers (myself) want to write flattering blurbs. Funny, painful, and ultimately redemptive, THIS COULD HURT is a beautifully drawn canvas of corporate America in all its lunacy…
—JOHN KENNEY, Thurber Prize-winning author of TRUTH IN ADVERTISING
You wouldn’t expect a corporate HR department to house a thrill-ride of a novel, but Jillian Medoff pulls off the impossible here. Funny, searing and wholly original…Medoff knocks this one out of the park.
—DARIN STRAUSS, author of MORE THAN IT HURTS YOU and HALF A LIFE
Clear your Outlook calendar and have tissues at the ready for this huge-hearted page turner that reaffirms the healing power of plain old kindness.
—COURTNEY MAUM, author of TOUCH and I AM HAVING SO FUN HERE WITHOUT YOU
Tender and compelling, Jillian Medoff’s THIS COULD HURT reveals what happens when the ties that bind us start to fray and we are called upon to care for each other. That these relationships are among coworkers in an HR department makes them as unpredictable as they are hilarious but always real and always entertaining.
—GEORGE HODGMAN, author of BETTYVILLE
Searing, sexy and surprisingly funny, Jillian Medoff’s THIS COULD HURT burns through the pages. No one is safe in this cruel but compassionate take on corporate America. I loved it.
—MARCY DERMANSKY, author of THE RED CAR
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.