In Cats, Chaos and Condo Board Wars, Hilary Brandt is an up and coming event planner who has made her mark in the industry by sheer hard work and dedication to her clients. Author Nikki LeClair brings us this tale of a successful, thirty-something woman who struggles with the eternal life balance between career and potential romance. Living in one of the city’s top condominium buildings, courtesy of her late grandfather’s bequest to her, with roommate and BFF Luna, Hilary and the rest of the tenants are dogged by an autocratic, Condo Board Chairwoman in the face of Mrs Glover, who it seems has been the tenant’s nemesis for almost forever. Incredibly unfair and favoring certain tenants over others, Mrs Glover has long been the bane of many of the condo’s residents. A group of them decide it is time to overthrow the ogre and Hilary, with her well-known organizational and people skills is the obvious person to do it. When Mrs Glover forbids Hilary from eating “very smelly” Indian Takeout in her apartment and makes her sit outside in the pouring rain to eat, that is the straw that breaks the camel’s back for Hilary and she throws herself headlong into the nasty, backbiting struggle to win the tenant’s support in the upcoming elections.
Cats, Chaos and Condo Boards is an unpretentious chick-lit romance that stands out primarily for the depth of characters that author Nikki LeClair manages to infuse into her story. I am probably as far removed from LeClair’s target audience as you can get and yet I found myself entranced by the political backbiting and general nastiness of this minor election. The author does a great job of instilling humour into the tale to give it an excellent balance between the drama and the fun. The relationship issues that Hilary has with both her friends and her potential love matches are genuinely funny and well-written. If you are looking for a break from the horrors, drama and angst of much of today’s offerings in both reality and the book world then this book will give you that. It is well-written and flows seamlessly from one dilemma to the next. As a character, I wanted to slap Hilary for being “too nice” and slap Eli for being “too camp” and that, in my opinion is the mark of an excellent author; one who can raise emotions within the reader. This is no literary masterpiece but what it is, is a fun, enjoyable romp away from reality that leaves the reader grinning to him/herself at the end and that is what we all look for in a romantic comedy. Kudos to Nikki LeClair and I am tempted to read more from this author.