Most helpful critical review
Interesting topic; tiresome attitude
on 21 May 1998
Although the notion of life as seen by a housecleaner is interesting--how much do our homes reveal about our "secrets"?--and the style is mildly entertaining, the chip on the author's shoulder detracts from the book. An example--she freely admits that she "overcharges" a lot of clients for various services, but then counsels those who use housecleaners to leave little uplifting notes like "you're amazing!" She wants top pay *and* ego-stroking for doing her job? Nice work if you can get it.
In one nearly repellant episode, while cleaning for a commercial service she considers exploitive, she notices that the home's owner has many books on his shelves about the exploitation of labor. Interrupting him as he works, she waves one of the titles at him and expects him to join her in a discussion of the plight of certain workers, especially those in the cleaning business. The poor man is, understandably, less than enthused at this prospect....he was hoping for clean floors; instead he's being harangued about social issues by some woman he's never seen before, one who's being paid to dust the books, not wave them at him.
The book is breezy and mildly entertaining, but the author's attitude is tiresome, and her manners are appalling (inviting your boyfriend over to make use of a client's bed when no one is home, and then charging someone for the privilege?). It's enough to make you scrub your own bathroom.