Once again, I'm reading a book that I'm not sure I'm into. I was really looking forward to this book, mostly because of the setting--it's in a time and place that I find very interesting but is a bit unusual for historical fiction. Also, the main character is very different from me, and I was looking forward to a different viewpoint.
None of that
is the problem. The problem is the plot. As in, there isn't much of one.
I reached page 50 wondering why I wasn't more enthusiastic about this
story, and then I realized: What story? Nothing's happening. We
had descriptions of the main character and descriptions of where he
lives and where he works and where he hangs out when he is not working,
and there were descriptions of his relatives and his boss and his
acquaintances, but by page 50 none of these characters had done much of
anything to warrant all this ink.
I have been more willing lately
to abandon books unfinished if they're not holding my interest, but I
decided to give this one a bit more of a chance for the sake of the
setting. Also, it's very well written on the sentence-by-sentence level,
so I know this writer has some chops, and I'm hoping that persistence
will pay off in the end. There are times I will stick with a difficult
book to challenge myself, and I'm willing to challenge myself a little
Fortunately, things picked up a bit between pages 50
and 60, so we'll see how it goes from here. I'm not yet committed to
finishing, but I'll see how the next 20-30 pages go. Also I am using
this experience to remind myself that as a writer, I must never let a
story go on anywhere near this long without some change, some progress
in the conflict.