Stupid and Contagious
Twenty-six-year-old Heaven Albright is a failed PR executive turned embittered waitress. Twenty-nine-year-old Brady Gilbert is a struggling independent music producer with no bands and a get-rich quick product idea: “Cinnamilk”–a delicious beverage derived from leaving cereal in the bowl too long. What do these two people have in common? Not much–except for a shared dislike for one another as neighbors. You see, Heaven has an annoying habit of opening Brady’s mail. The tide turns, however, when she rescues Brady from an awkward encounter with his psycho ex-girlfriend, sparking an unlikely friendship and a united quest to pitch Cinnamilk to the founder of America’s biggest coffee chain. But will Brady and Heaven’s fortune-seeking adventures also brew romance?
From Publishers Weekly
This funny duet pairs two New York City 20-something neighbors: Heaven Albright, whose reversal in fortunes transforms her from über-PR exec to bumbling waitress, and Brady Gilbert, an aspiring music producer with problems navigating the bright lights of the big city. The story of their personal and professional travails unfolds in alternating chapters, appealingly narrated by zany Heaven and wry Brady. The two meet-cute downstairs at the deli, and even if the novel’s arc is familiar (it’s instantly obvious that Heaven and Brady’s initial distaste for each other can never last), Crane’s giddy, playful prose feels fresh. When Heaven inevitably gets fired from the restaurant, she joins Brady on a trip to Seattle, where he hopes for a face-to-face meeting with Starbucks founder Howard Schultz to pitch him an idea for Cinnamilk (the flavor left after you’ve eaten cinnamon cereal). The adventures that play out from New York to Seattle as the two pursue their idealistic dreams prove so much fun that a touch of predictability hardly matters. TV writer Crane heavily spices her debut with pop culture references from the ’80s to the present day and keeps the story moving with snappy dialogue, a combo likely to entertain legions of (gum-popping) readers.
With this winning romantic comedy, former MTV head writer Crane delivers a first novel reminiscent of Laura Zigman’s best-selling Animal Husbandry (1997). The story is told in alternating chapters by 29-year-old indie record producer Brady, who could have stepped right out of a Nick Hornby novel, and 26-year-old PR maven turned surly waitress Heaven, a veritable modern-day Lucille Ball. The two meet when they become neighbors, and Heaven keeps receiving Brady’s mail, which she promptly opens and reads. But irritation soon turns into attraction as the two eventually take a wacky road trip to Seattle, where Brady waxes enthusiastic about signing a young band and attempts to land a meeting with the founder of Starbucks about his idea for a new drink. Crane makes light comedy, usually so difficult to create and sustain, look effortless. Laden with references to cool bands and obsolete snack foods and full of witty repartee, this will elicit knowing smiles from MTV and pop–culture devotees.
“Hilarious and spirited debut”
- TimeOut New York
“Stupid and Contagious is the irresistible story of a brilliantly inept waitress and a star-crossed record producer whose individual manias are outmatched only by the hilarious insanity that erupts when they come together.”
- People Magazine, “People, Places and Things”
“Winning romantic comedy… Crane makes light comedy, usually so difficult to create and sustain, look effortless.”
“I’ve often said that the trick to chick lit (or chick flicks, too, for that matter) isn’t in writing an original story- it’s in taking the usual story and making it fun again. And Caprice Crane does that with flair- such flair, in fact, that you don’t even have to be a chick to enjoy it.”
“A truly exceptional book – funny, twisted, clever, mean, and always brilliant.”
- Anna Maxted, author of Getting Over It
“Insanely funny and outrageous, Stupid and Contagious effortlessly captures the glorious awkwardness of becoming who you are, finding that special someone who drives you crazy, and ultimately following your dreams wherever they may take you.”
- Erica Kennedy, author of Bling
Buy This Book
Stupid & Contagious is partly about the enduring love affairs we all have with music. Check out the playlist of Brady Gilbert, S&C’s leading man…