Under the Influence

This is a very fun read, especially if you are like me and will read any book about influencer culture. This one was more about self help influencer culture (so different from my world, think Rachel Hollis maybe?) and it was FUN – like a Devil Wears Prada for the digital age. I read it on my overnight flight to Venice and did not want to put it down to sleep (I continued to read it when I got to Venice — ultimately finishing it at a sidewalk cafe while I waited for my boyfriend to arrive). Harper is smart but unlucky with work; laid off from her last job and totally broke, struggling to pay rent. When she is offered a job working for a self-help influencer (Charlotte Green) where she’ll be paid triple her old salary, she jumps at the offer even though it means moving to Nashville. Charlotte is charismatic and optimistic, and has built a cult-like following. But some things are too good to be true. What starts out as a fun, refreshing workplace (afternoon dance parties and group bonding activities!) quickly turns toxic. The book explores some of the darker sides of the industry: assistants who don’t get credit, plagiarism, toxic positivity, I could go on. I really enjoyed this.

Updated to add: semi juicy: I stalked the author a bit and realized she actually worked for The Hollis Co. for two years. I wonder how autobiographical this is!

Author: Noelle Crooks