Book Review: The Broke Ass Brigade by: Don Romonov

Rating: 4/5

Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

Publish Date: August 26, 2012

Origins: From Author for Review

Format: Trade Paperback

Order From:  Amazon / Barnes & Noble

Synopsis: The Broke Ass Brigade is a sarcastic account of the employment of The author Don Romonov in one of the larger retail chains in the world. Don entered the workforce as a young man barely out of High school, full of enthusiasm and Idealism. He was soon to receive an abrupt reality check of what corporate America is all about. Raised in the middle class, Don believed in the value system of working an honest day’s work for an honest wage. That by doing what was “right” and working hard he had no choice but to succeed. The Company Store however had other plans for Don and his coworkers- the American working class. Terrorized by crazy and vindictive bosses Don manages to maintain his sanity and sense of humor while dealing with the masses that frequent the Company Store. Illuminating the day to day interactions of the employees of the Company Store, Don details the devastating effects of poor wages, continued false promises of promotion, threats to employees that call in sick or have life threatening disabilities, and stagnate leadership that make up the culture of the Company Store. Born with Aspergers syndrome Don brings an unusual and witty perspective to the everyday events of the Company store. While employed at the store he encounters a group of crusty and hardnosed veterans who refer to themselves as “The Broke Ass Brigade”. While talking to Don one day they spell out the demise of the American worker in the Company Store and point out the incredible injustice the corporation has handed out to the employees. Relevant in today's “Occupy Wall Street” environment, The Broke Ass Brigade was written over a period of eight years and chronicles the lives and relationships of the workers of the Company Store. Join Don as he goes where we all have been and wondered, “Are these people for real?” Don is about to show you in a painfully sarcastic and funny way, Yes they are Very Real.

Review: Welcome to ‘The Broke Ass Brigade’, a novel/diary about life working for the Company Store. This book is very much stream of consciousness and as such, some readers may feel as if the book jumps around a lot yet the subject changes make perfect sense. I laughed out loud at some of the events and had to read then aloud to my spouse (then we were both cracking up!). Through a unique point of view, Mr. Romonov highlights a majority of what is wrong in this country right now. From the slave-driving and incompetent managers, the overworked and underappreciated employees, and the ridiculously sad customers, the author has truly captured what it is to work in one of the largest retail chains in the world. I thought some of my experiences in the retail world were bad, but they doesn’t even compare. ‘The Broke Ass Brigade’ is funny, sad, and touching – a must read! Be warned: there is graphic language and situations which are not appropriate for children. This is definitely an adult-only book.

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