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.Rosa Guerrero beat the odds as she rose to the top of the corporate world. An attractive woman of a certain age, the longtime chief of human resources at Ellery Consumer Research is still a formidable presence, even if her most vital days are behind her. A leader who wields power with grace and discretion, she has earned the devotion and loyalty of her staff. No one admires Rosa more than her doting lieutenant Leo Smalls, a benefits vice president whose whole world is Ellery.While Rosa is consumed with trying to address the needs of her staff within the ever-constricting limits of the company’s bottom line, her associate director, Rob Hirsch, a middle-aged, happily married father of two, finds himself drawing closer to his "work wife," Lucy Bender, an enterprising single woman searching for something—a romance, a promotion—to fill the vacuum in her personal life. For Kenny Verville, a senior manager with an MBA, Ellery is a temporary stepping-stone to bigger and better places—that is, if his high-powered wife has her way.Compelling, flawed, and heartbreakingly human, these men and women scheme, fall in and out of love, and nurture dreams big and small. As their individual circumstances shift, one thing remains constant—Rosa, the sun around whom they all orbit. When her world begins to crumble, the implications for everyone are profound, and Leo, Rob, Lucy, and Kenny find themselves changed in ways beyond their reckoning.Jillian Medoff explores the inner workings of an American company in all its brilliant, insane, comforting, and terrifying glory. Authentic, razor-sharp, and achingly funny, This Could Hurt is a novel about work, loneliness, love, and loyalty; about sudden reversals and unexpected windfalls; a novel about life.

This Could Hurt Details

TitleThis Could Hurt
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJan 9th, 2018
PublisherHarper
ISBN-139780062660763
Rating
GenreFiction

This Could Hurt Review

  • Ron Charles
    January 1, 1970
    Jillian Medoff knows corporate America intimately. She once worked for Deloitte, the multinational professional services network that exists so that Don DeLillo doesn’t have to invent it. In addition to three previous novels, Medoff’s résumé includes stints as a management consultant, a communication strategist and all manner of related workplace necromancy. The cover of her new novel, “This Could Hurt,” is an employee termination checklist.The story opens in 2009, amid the wreckage of the Great Jillian Medoff knows corporate America intimately. She once worked for Deloitte, the multinational professional services network that exists so that Don DeLillo doesn’t have to invent it. In addition to three previous novels, Medoff’s résumé includes stints as a management consultant, a communication strategist and all manner of related workplace necromancy. The cover of her new novel, “This Could Hurt,” is an employee termination checklist.The story opens in 2009, amid the wreckage of the Great Recession. At a small market-research firm in New York, the HR department has already been cut in half. “Despair had set in,” Medoff writes, but HR Director Rosa Guerrero is optimistic. Rosa had “elevated HR from a ragtag bunch of clueless clerks into a team of professionals,” and she knows they can get through this rough spot if they’re smart and nimble.Unfortunately, they’re not smart or nimble. They’re human, which is to say they’re scared, self-interested and indebted. Among Rosa’s employees is a depressed VP of operations who’s skimming. . . . .To read the rest of this review, go to The Washington Post:https://www.washingtonpost.com/entert...
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  • Marcy Dermansky
    January 1, 1970
    I am lucky to have gotten the chance to red Jillian's new book before its release. I even blurbed it. This is what I wrote -- and mean every word.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.
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  • Jill
    January 1, 1970
    It’s obvious that Jillian Medoff knows whereof she writes. Anyone who has ever been in a corporate environment will instantly recognize the truths that serve as the foundation for this plot. Many of us have either worked at a company like Ellery Consumer Research Group or have known friends who have.So, if the characters seem just a tad bit stereotypical, it’s for good reason. Rosa Guerrero is the widowed and childless HR Chief who is fiercely loyal to her staff, who serve as substitute family t It’s obvious that Jillian Medoff knows whereof she writes. Anyone who has ever been in a corporate environment will instantly recognize the truths that serve as the foundation for this plot. Many of us have either worked at a company like Ellery Consumer Research Group or have known friends who have.So, if the characters seem just a tad bit stereotypical, it’s for good reason. Rosa Guerrero is the widowed and childless HR Chief who is fiercely loyal to her staff, who serve as substitute family to her. She oversees a gaggle of employees: Rob Hirsch, her burnt-out protégée in danger of being laid off, Lucy Bender who seeks both a promotion and a man who is worthy of her, Kenny Verville with his MBA from Wharton, and Leo Smalls, her overweight and sometimes overwrought surrogate son.All these characters wrestle with the economic turbulence that threatens their job security and the insecurities of their marriages or lack of meaningful relationships. The small and not-so-small dramas are played out: the betrayal of a trusted friend being groomed for succession, the semi-crush on the co-worker, the New Year’s Eve spent with co-workers, and so forth.Jillian Medoff writes in an entertaining and compelling style that draws in the reader. I believe that a good editor would have done wonders; the book can be repetitive, drumming home some of the same points over and over. That being said, it’s a fun and authentic read and a worthy addition to books about corporate America.
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  • Cindy Roesel
    January 1, 1970
    THIS COULD HURT (Harper) by Jillian Medoff is an inspired satire on something we all (well, mostly all) have to do daily! Go to work! For the people working peeps in the Human Resources department of the Ellery Consumer Research Group, sometimes it’s a good day, sometimes bad, but at Ellery, it's never boring! Five somewhat dysfunctional people work hard, hoping to stay employed while the economy shifts making layoffs more realistic than ever being told, "Good job." Rosa Guerrero, Chief Executiv THIS COULD HURT (Harper) by Jillian Medoff is an inspired satire on something we all (well, mostly all) have to do daily! Go to work! For the people working peeps in the Human Resources department of the Ellery Consumer Research Group, sometimes it’s a good day, sometimes bad, but at Ellery, it's never boring! Five somewhat dysfunctional people work hard, hoping to stay employed while the economy shifts making layoffs more realistic than ever being told, "Good job." Rosa Guerrero, Chief Executive VP, oversees the entire employee experience and it's not a job for a wimp."Being Chief at Ellery in 2009 was like running air traffic control during a typhoon. It was up to Rosa not only to guide each pilot to safety, she also had to protect the people on the ground and maintain the airport's profitability."Working at Ellery is being part of a family. Rosa is the strong mother who has been around a block or two, protecting and nourishing her babies. Each brings their own mishegas, and Rosa’s there to call for “time outs,” when necessary. THIS COULD HURT is set in 2009 when many people were being laid-off and changing their career paths, not necessarily on their own volition. Anybody hoping to take home a paycheck was fearful that the stock market may drop … again! Medoff’s narrative puts readers on the 9th floor of a converted lower west-side warehouse, where employees can’t help, but feel like commodities being put on and taken off the shelf.Jillian Medoff’s narrative and pithy dialogue reads fast, its smart and makes her fans smile, hoping she writes another novel, sooner rather than later!
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  • switterbug (Betsey)
    January 1, 1970
    This has to be the only novel I know of that centers on Human Resources, a department in the workplace that is often mystifying to me (especially as I’ve worked at some places where HR personnel were the most brutal and unkind). I found it an original idea, so decided to check it out. Medoff does is effective at solidifying characters so that they leap from the pages. Also, the manner in which your work family can be supportive, dysfunctional, or betraying, just like a home family, is a clear th This has to be the only novel I know of that centers on Human Resources, a department in the workplace that is often mystifying to me (especially as I’ve worked at some places where HR personnel were the most brutal and unkind). I found it an original idea, so decided to check it out. Medoff does is effective at solidifying characters so that they leap from the pages. Also, the manner in which your work family can be supportive, dysfunctional, or betraying, just like a home family, is a clear theme that stands out.My problem with the novel was its tendency toward repetition, redundancy. There are times I just wanted the author to get on with it. Although Rosa Guerrero is a poignant example of someone who is married to her job and whose identity merges with her position, I feel that she or the narrative ran out of steam for me somewhere in the middle. Medoff is a skilled, witty, and nuanced writer but I finished the book a bit weary of it all.
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  • Ettore
    January 1, 1970
    Warm, funny, enchanting, intriguing... What words of praise could one not use about this book? Jillian Medoff takes what seems on its face a rather mundane topic--corporate human resources--and fashions a tale about the behind-the-scenes machinations that's thoroughly engaging yet heart-achingly and gut-bustingly real. The characters are so fully formed and well written that you'll come to feel you've truly spent time with these people. This is a can't-miss read whether you've worked in the corp Warm, funny, enchanting, intriguing... What words of praise could one not use about this book? Jillian Medoff takes what seems on its face a rather mundane topic--corporate human resources--and fashions a tale about the behind-the-scenes machinations that's thoroughly engaging yet heart-achingly and gut-bustingly real. The characters are so fully formed and well written that you'll come to feel you've truly spent time with these people. This is a can't-miss read whether you've worked in the corporate world or not.
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  • KBev
    January 1, 1970
    Really loved this book. Super cute & let’s be honest - we all work with people like Rob, Lucy, Leo and Rosa! We know them all! It’s like a Book version of The Office, but with more heart & less Dwight.
  • Emily
    January 1, 1970
    Jillian Medoff is one of my favorite writer. Her new novel is a warm, witty look at modern office life that anyone who has ever come near corporate politics (and even those who haven't) will adore. Her quirky characters and their all-too-human relationships will stay with you long after you finish the book.
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  • Karen Bergreen
    January 1, 1970
    I was obsessed with this book from page one. Medoff reminds me of Franzen, although she is less judgmental in her writing. At first read, I felt as if I were spying on a bunch of very psychologically interesting characters. And then, all of a sudden, I found myself very emotionally attached--both to them and the story. A day after I finished, I found myself missing the characters.
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  • Courtney Maum
    January 1, 1970
    Absolutely heartwarming!
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