The Assistants

Cute, implausible beach read of a book if you have a couple hours to kill. It’s every low-paying wage worker’s fantasy—to somehow tap into that shower of gold that lines the executive’s pockets while they bark orders at you and you cut limes for their noon-time drinks.

Tina is the 30-year-old assistant to Robert, head of a media empire who spends lavishly. When his jet is broken, he insists that she buy out first class in the next available flight and get it comped. The agent refuses to comp it and Tina puts the $20k charge on her credit cards, but the next day, the airline apologizes and refunds the money. Only Tina has already submitted the expense report, and along comes the check, which would cover the remainder of her student debt. She holds on to the check for a few weeks and then throws caution to the wind and cashes it.

Turns out Emily, an assistant in the Travel & Expenses department, figures out what Tina’s done, and wants in on it. Soon Tina is covering Emily’s college debt as well, and Emily somehow moves in with her as a non-paying roommate. You know where this is leading. Another woman from accounting wants to cover the debt of a co-worker, and they come streaming in.

It all resolves itself without jail time or even any criminal charges. Everything plays out into a nice non-profit with the help of some software written by another low-paid woman who works at the company. Parts are entertaining and it’s a decent read for anyone looking for some mindless entertainment.