by Naomi Neale

June 2006
ISBN: 0-505-52686-7
Reviewer Graphic Button Making It
Mass Market Paperback

Cathy Voorhees is enjoying her life as a successful ad exec for Motive. She’s living the good life and she’s sure she’s about to get a promotion. After all, nothing can beat her exciting ad campaigns. However, she’s aghast to find out she’s been passed over. In fact, she’s been fired!

Depressed and bitter to say the least, Cathy heads home to recoup and decides to eat dinner. A frozen dinner in the microwave leads to something she never expected. An explosion rends her unconscious and when she awakens, a strange man is leaning over, addressing her as Miss Voight. How strange! Stranger still is the realization that Cathy has suddenly jumped back in time to 1959! Talk about a bad day. Cathy is no longer Cathy Voorhees, successful career woman. Now, she’s known to one and all as Cathy Voight, successful recipes creator for Richmond Better Home Publications, and first class…snob. How in the heck has Cathy got into this situation, and how can she get out of it? How will she succeed without modern technology and appliances, and how can she get her cute landlord to ask her out? These are just a few of the dilemmas Cathy faces in Naomi Neale’s ingenious I Went to Vassar for This?

Humor and complications explode in this tantalizing taste of the past. Cathy Voorhees is a modern woman in a decidedly un-modern time. As she experiences what she believes to be the primitiveness of an earlier generation, Cathy learns that sometimes the past should not be forgotten. Naomi Neale doesn’t force lessons of the past on the reader, but rather, she shows that sometimes the simple can be for the better. Cathy learns some valuable lessons about herself during her times in the fifties, but she also has a lot of fun while doing it. Cathy puts her own spin on the life of Cathy Voight, imbuing her job and life with some very contemporary ideas. The engaging love story between Cathy and her landlord adds yet another satisfying layer to this story.

I Went to Vassar for This reads like a truly pleasurable history lesson. Cathy shines as she tries to get used to this new time period. Her wit, off the cuff remarks, and insightful queries make her a true star. Naomi Neale continually explores the bounds of chick lit romances, and this story truly takes the Tiny Minnie Snack Cake!

Reviewed in July 2006 by Sarah.

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