Review: Smile and Look Pretty by Amanda Pellegrino

Author: Amanda Pellegrino
Publisher: Park Row
Released: March 8, 2022
Received: NetGalley

3 1/2 kitties

Smile and Look Pretty is the first novel I’ve seen by Amanda Pellegrino, and I love giving new thriller authors a shot. The title is chilling in a painfully familiar way – something I feel like many readers could say. That was enough to grab my attention.

Four office assistants have sworn to stick together through thick and thin. In this instance, that means they’re going to tackle to the toxic environment that is their workplace – together. Their master plan? Start a blog highlighting their experiences.

Their stories resonate with many readers, causing their blog to go viral. Women share their stories, spreading the word with each passing day. Unfortunately, their blog going viral means they’re all the more likely to get busted for what they’re doing.

“…we can’t speak up. Instead, we’re told to be invisible but look presentable. To blend in but wear more makeup. To shroud our faces but put on tighter pants. To be grateful to have a job but barely make minimum wage.”

Before I begin my review, I want to comment on something. I feel like Smile and Look Pretty is one of several books that came out in the past few months with a similar name. I had to double and triple-check my book notes before writing my review since I was terrified I would mix things up on you guys. I know book titles have trends, so it happens. Anybody else notice this?

Man, Smile and Look Pretty hits HARD. Even the title is based on something very relevant these days, which amps up its impact tenfold. The book itself hits even harder, and with good reason.

This book starts kind of slow but quickly picks up in place. I promise you that you’ll be screaming at anybody who dares interrupt your reading by the end. Totally not speaking from experience here (I swear).

As for the characters, they’re tough and in the best of ways. They’re dealing with a lot, both in their working lives and with the pressure of it all. Seeing them find a different way to strike back was refreshing; I’ll give you that much!

I liked Amanda Pellegrino’s writing style and am looking forward to seeing what she comes up with next. Here’s hoping we’ll find out soon enough.

Thanks to Park Row and #NetGalley for making this book available for review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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About Liz (AKA Cat)

I am an avid animal lover, photographer, reader, and much more. While my photography blog is feeling a bit neglected at the moment, the other sites I'm involved in are going strong. ✧I review books, comics, and basically anything else in the literary world over at Quirky Cat's Fat Stacks (of Books). ✧I review comics and books, as well as write content for Word of the Nerd. ✧I review comics for Monkeys Fighting Robots. ✧I write content for Screen Rant and CBR. ✧I write book reviews for The Review Crew.
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