Book Review | First Jobs: True Tales of Bad Bosses, Quirky Coworkers, Big Breaks, and Small Paychecks by Merritt Watts

Merritt Watts
Advance Reader Copy, 234 pages
Publication date:
April 28th 2015
Received from publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Do you remember your first job? I sure do, mine was at a fairly upscale clothing store and frankly I had no idea what I was doing there at the time. Interestingly enough the company that owned the store has now declared bankruptcy, and it no longer exists.

The editors of First Jobs: True Tales of Bad Bosses, Quirky Coworkers, Big Breaks, and Small Paychecks make a fair point when they say that while the majority of us may remember where we first worked, few of us actually remember what we spent our money we made from those jobs on.

What I enjoyed with reference to First Jobs by Merritt Watts was the fact that there was a wide range of job experiences. While we hear about the experiences of numerous “regular” people, there are also a number of stories from several quite influential people in the book. It was nice to hear how these powerful and occasionally famous people got their start. I also appreciated how each story wasn’t too long, and I found that they were all unique and extremely entertaining to read. A few of the stories were inspiring while others were extra hilarious as a result of their random nature. Another remarkable thing to note was that the book was quite inclusive in that it included stories from people of different generations as a result you get to observe how work has changed over the years and how various elements still remain the same.

Overall it was interesting to discover what people took from their various job experiences i.e. skills they picked up, lesson learned etc. I also loved how the book was divided into sections like weird jobs and jobs that acted as a started point for people. All in all, First Jobs was a fascinating and highly amusing collection of stories looking at the first jobs that some people had.

Anyways to conclude this review I thought it would be fun to ask some of my friends to share their own first job experiences here:

“I was a hostess for one of Ontario’s famous buffet franchises. Although there were a small number of staff that did make my first job a little uneasy, but there were also a number of coworkers that brightened up my experience over the course of two years. I was nervous at times especially around my strict manager, even if my job sounded fairly easy.” –  June

“My first job was at Benix & Co., a kitchen store. It taught me how become a better people person and how to work with others. As a first job, it was fun and educational with a small staff that created a positive environment.” – Kat

“My first job actually begins with my mom. My mom worked in a dental office as a receptionist and because I was an only child, it was easier to bring along to work when there wasn’t really busy days. I would help with highlighting things and filing some files away. It wasn’t really a job, but it was fun to be around my mom. And as I got older, the more I would accompany her, the more I would learn. It is interesting that this is where it all began, because I am still a part-time receptionist today and everything I’ve learned begins from my early job experience with my mom.” – Christine @ Padfoot’s Library

“My first job was at Canada’s Wonderland as an Events Attendant. My job was to ensure that people who were attending the Live Entertainment events were behaving and that nothing was going wrong. I hated the job- it was so noisy and people were bossy and pushy, but my colleagues were super nice!” – Tanya @ Book Loving Hippo


Regardless of how this book came into my possession, the above review consists of my honest opinion of the book and my opinion only.


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