Thank you, NetGalley, for providing an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
I’m about to do something I really don’t like to do: give a book one star. Unfortunately, I felt really backed into a corner on this one, and I just ended up having a pretty poor reading experience. As always, with reviews of this kind, I want to note that my rating is simply the opinion of one person, and there will certainly be people out there who enjoy the story. I firmly believe that every book has an ideal audience that will love it, but as much as I wanted to be a part of that audience, I am not.
My main issue ended up being the predictability of the story, in which case every “reveal” was actually something I guessed long before. I think much of this had to do with the fact that the author clearly had a bone to pick with a certain political party. I’m not naïve. I know modern politics are included in a lot of books, no matter the genre. But I think those points can be included while also surprising the reader by not making the “bad guy” the most obvious person possible.
I was really hoping for a grand surprise at the end, and for a moment I thought I got one. Then, there was a further surprise that ended up being exactly who I had pegged as the ultimate villain from about 10 percent of the way through, simply from gleaning the author’s political leaning. (A bit of a bummer.)
I also found many of the characters unlikable. There was such a focus, by everyone, even the main characters I was probably supposed to like, on the color of people’s skin, that I found it difficult to form any kind of connection with them. When the anti-gun, anti-violence, (stereotypical “girlboss”) white female protagonist has a whole inner monologue about whether a man is Asian, Pakistani, or Bangladeshi-Irish (or something like that), while there’s a dead person out there, I find it hard to sympathize or understand her train of thought.
All in all, I can honestly say this is not the book for me, but I do hope it finds its way into the right circles.