March 10, 2009 - Don't Let It
Be True
released to bookstores.

March 10, 2009 - New website

March 16, 2009 - Book Signing

Don't Let It Be True

This smart, sassy novel is Barrett’s third, and it promises to live up to the enormous success enjoyed by the author’s previous, internationally published books, The Men’s Guide to the Women’s Bathroom, and This Is How It Happened (Not a Love Story).

This time, Jo gives us glimpse into the uppercrust world of modern Texas oil barons. Kathleen King is the last remaining heir to the King Dynasty. She lives in a penthouse (funded by boyfriend), and runs with Houston’s most fashionable crowd (“the Gucci’s”)—but the truth is, she doesn’t have a penny to her name. Her exquisite “designer” clothes are actually vintage finds. When her grandfather died, Kat donated her entire trust fund to the founding of a pediatric cancer charity. She hates living a sham, but in order bring in money for her foundation, she must preserve the King family name.

Things get complicated when Dylan (who has been Kat’s boyfriend since high school and still hasn’t popped the question) finds out his dead father lost all the family’s money in a poker game. And his movie-star-handsome (yet hopelessly immature) younger brother, Wyatt, is in major trouble with a Las Vegas bookie.

Kat must call upon her sharp wit and womanly charms to untangle herself (and the men in her life) from financial destruction—while also coming to terms with yet another secret that threatens her biggest dream of all.

Christine Maddalena
Publicist, Avon Books

Attorney-Authors' Books Empower And Entertain
By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys
Texas Lawyer
Monday, March 10, 2008

Jo Barrett, a lawyer who lives in Austin and writes full time, says her goal is making the readers of her romantic comedies laugh. "I wanted women to read and get a laugh a page, almost how comedians do," she says.

Writing takes a lot of discipline, says Jo Barrett, the writer living in Austin whose second published novel, "This Is How It Happened (Not a Love Story)," came out in January. "You just have to sit down and actually do it. No one is going to do it for you."

Barrett, who graduated from the University of Texas in 1993 and Georgetown University Law Center in 2000, says she wrote her first novel, a political thriller, about 10 years ago. She started the novel while working as a congressional aide on Capitol Hill and while going to law school at night.

That book is unpublished, but Barrett says it's a "constant work in progress," and she hopes it will make it into print.

In 2000, after graduating from law school, Barrett moved to New York City, where she worked at Cardozo School of Law as assistant director of a corporate governance program. In 2005, she moved to Boston to write but returned to Texas in 2007.

Barrett's first book, "The Men's Guide to the Women's Bathroom" was published in 2007, and she's working on a new novel that should come out within the next six months.

While she writes women's fiction, Barrett says her books are not Chick Lit, which she says typically involves the standard girl-meets-boy format. "This Is How It Happened (Not a Love Story)" is a comedy about a spurned woman who hires a hit-man to get revenge on her ex-fiancÈ, but she ends up schooling the hit-man in female mind games, Barrett says.

Barrett says her books differ from Chick Lit. Her first book focuses on the character of a woman in transition while in the second book the main character comes to realize success is the best revenge and she always has the tools for success within herself.

Publishers Weekly:
At the start of Barrett's very funny second novel (after 2007's The Men's Guide to the Women's Bathroom), Madeline Piatro, a powerhouse marketing whiz, vows to kill her ex-fiancé, Carlton Connors, the sexy but selfish son of an equally self-absorbed millionaire. Soon after meeting as students in the University of Texas (Austin) M.B.A. program, Maddy and Carlton move in together. She falls for his sappy "I intend to marry you" proposal, helps him graduate and creates Organics 4 Kids, a lunch program for parents on the go that his father bankrolls. Four years later, the unfaithful and deceitful Carlton dumps and fires Maddy after the company built on her program takes off. Maddy recognizes her part in the debacle, but Carlton is such a jerk, readers can't resist cheering her on as she experiments with poisoned brownies and retribution spells. Help comes from an unlikely source, a memorable hit man who provides a juicy cherry on the top of a creamy, dreamy revenge treat. (Feb.)

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