Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Book Review: The Metropolitan Affair, by Jocelyn Green

 This is a challenging review to write.

As a creator myself, I know how hard it is to make anything and put it out in the world. I don't review books as a critic. I review as a writer, artist, and passionate reader. I don't like to publicly say anything negative about something someone has created.

But I received this book on the condition that 
I'd post an honest review, so here we go.

On the plus side: In The Metropolitan Affair, Jocelyn Green has created a lush and vibrant world. 1920's New York City, the Egyptology department of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Central Park, and the Italian neighbourhoods are decadent! I revelled in the detailed settings of cafes, hotels, and restaurants. I loved the well-researched details of museum life, 1920's police procedures, and even the workings of the early subway. 

But when it came to the story, it fell flat. To be clear, there's no issue with the actual plot. But it was way too slow.

And here's where to get to my overall complaint with so many recent books:

They're all too long!

Don't get me wrong - there's nothing wrong with a long book, but it has to be long because it tells a long story, not because there are too many pages!

Recently, I've read so many 400 page books that could easily have been 350 or even 300 pages long!

I feel like publishers are so eager to get out the "next great thing" that they're missing a really crucial editing phase. Stories and pace are getting bogged down by way too much filler.

Vacuum that story! Get out the fluff! Make it tight!

If The Metropolitan Affair had been 300 pages, it would have been a smart, tense historical thriller with a great dose of romance and family drama. Instead, it was a narrative slog in a beautiful world.

So, I'm sorry to have to write this review, but there you go. 

Honesty. It can be a pain in the butt sometimes.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.

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