"Sly and satirical...Rarely has cubicle culture been depicted in such griminess or with such glee."
–Publishers Weekly, STARRED review
“Darkly humorous and sharply observed satire…Wells has brilliantly crafted an obnoxiously opinionated, delusional, yet sympathetic raconteur, tightly holding the reader's attention while exposing existential dread gleaned from petty human drama. And it's so inappropriately fun to read.” –Booklist, STARRED review
"A suspenseful... examination of one woman’s delusion. This gripping, sometimes shocking novel relies on quiet twists to keep the reader guessing."–Kirkus Reviews
"Razor-sharp . . . Biting and compulsive." GRAZIA
"A darkly funny tale." RED MAGAZINE
"[A] compulsively readable workplace satire." The iPaper
An offbeat, darkly clever debut novel about a night cleaner who discovers a toxic secret about her company’s CEO—and decides to take matters into her own hands
Every night, she cleans. On the fourth floor of an unnamed office in an unnamed city, the night cleaner comes and does what she does best—sorts out the messes of the daytime employees. None of them know her, but she knows everything about them: Sad Intern’s dreams to get promoted, Résumé Woman’s nasty flight-risk behavior, Mr. Buff’s secret smoking habit (not very conducive to his fitness journey).
She's the office mastermind, the one everyone needs, and no one even knows she exists. And tonight, while scrolling through your emails, she’ll discover the secret you’ve been hiding—the one that will put everyone’s job at risk.
But protecting the employees is her responsibility: whether it’s from rats and window smudges or from the sinister CEO who may be driving the company into ruin. And you’re about to find out that, sometimes, your most powerful enemy is the one you don’t even see.
“What total delight it is to roam this (almost) empty building with Brandi Wells’ cleaner who is always peering (and neatening) the surfaces of people’s lives and finding so much depth in there to mess with-- Here’s a new and key addition to office fiction and a thrilling novel debut by a propulsive voice."
—Aimee Bender, author of The Butterfly Lampshade
“A sharp and toothy portrait of a life devoted to the convenience of others . . . Cleaner skilfully satirizes the work-place novel, offering cutting insights on the hypocrisy and empty ambitions of grind culture."
—Isle McElroy, author of People Collide and The Atmospherians
“Brandi Wells’s Cleaner is a fantastic office novel, a keen evocation of our deep desire for dignity in the workplace and for recognition of a job well done. It’s also a smart thriller about what the essential workers you choose not to see might right now be thinking about you—and a sharp reminder that you ignore the people upon whom your good life depends at your own peril.”
—Matt Bell, author of Appleseed
“A richly crafted delusion of a novel. I couldn’t put it down — one hell of a book!"
—Sarah Rose Etter, author of Ripe