The Nanny Diaries
The Nanny Diaries
St. Martin's Press, Hardcover, 9780312278588, 320pp.
Publication Date: March 1, 2002
One young woman to take care of four-year-old boy.
Must be cheerful, enthusiastic and selfless-bordering on masochistic
Must relish sixteen-hour shifts with a deliberately nap-deprived pre-schooler
Must love getting thrown up on, literally and figuratively, by everyone in his family
Must enjoy the delicious anticipation of ridiculously erratic pay
Mostly, must love being treated like fungus found growing out of employers Hermes bag.
Those who take it personally need not apply.
Who wouldn't want this job?
Struggling to graduate from NYU and afford her microscopic studio apartment, Nanny takes a position caring for the only son of the wealthy X family. She rapidly learns the insane amount of juggling involved to ensure that a Park Avenue wife who doesn't work, cook, clean, or raise her own child has a smooth day.
When the Xs marriage begins to disintegrate, Nanny ends up involved way beyond the bounds of human decency or good taste. Her tenure with the X family becomes a nearly impossible mission to maintain the mental health of their four-year-old, her own integrity and, most importantly, her sense of humor. Over nine tense months Mrs. X and Nanny perform the age-old dance of decorum and power as they test the limits of modern-day servitude.
The Nanny Diaries deftly skewers the manner in which America's over-privileged raise les petites over-privileged-as if grooming them for a Best in Show competition. Written by two former nannies, this alternately comic and poignant satire punctures the glamour of Manhattan's upper class.
"a national phenomenon" --Newsweek
"[Nanny is] Mary Poppins channeling Dorothy Parker" --Time