The reading slump marches onward, as do I. I almost feel like the poster child for one of those anger management classes where we discuss our feelings and the source of our discontent and why we have problems dealing with our emotional issues and why we can’t get along and actually be productive, contributing members to society. I don’t have a valid reason for my current behavior, other than to say I’ve been disappointed and repelled with the current crop of books that has made its way onto my Kindle. Most of it is of my own doing, but I couldn’t say no to free books, and I wanted to broaden my horizons a bit with some different reads. I’d like to apologize in advance as I attempt to control my out-of-synch behavior and reach that happy place—that book loving utopia—that I know is out there waiting for me, but alas, I will not find with THE BONES OF PARIS.
That’s not to say this tale is a bad or horrid or evil or wicked or corrupt read. Oh, no, this novel held promise and writing talent and dangled both in front of me like the proverbial carrot, as my jaws snapped at the proffered present, and I clenched nothing but air between my teeth. I tried and tried and tried again to end up sucked into a world where Paris, France stood tall and proud and larger-than-life with characters who felt realistic and hopeful and truthful, and I ended up flat on my back with my legs sticking straight up in the air in a sort of bike pedaling motion.
Harris Stuyvesant proved to have one-too-may sticks up his bunghole, and try as I might, I couldn’t pull them all out without removing most of his personality in the process. While he was certainly an admirable character, I never felt emotionally connected to him, almost as if he stood at a distance, while I stood at an easel and politely provided a portrait. Nancy Berger and Sarah Grey, however, proved much more to my liking and every bit as entertaining as I had hoped poor Harris would be. The rest of the cast of characters proved both interesting and a bit off-putting in a snooty sort of air that left my feathers more than a bit ruffled.
The main plot proved engaging, but the sidebars and sidetracks and subplots and runaway tractor trailers kept me from ever being fully engaged in this tale. Instead, I stood on the side of the road with my thumb pointed upward, as this tale passed me by without even a second glance in my direction. And for a while the writing was good enough that it didn’t matter, but about a third of the way through I began to have my doubts that only snowballed downhill faster than a Model T.
*BEGIN SPOILER* The climax and resolution left me more than a bit underwhelmed. To have the villain blame the machine for the rather fantastical killing spree seemed just a wee bit much to me. And what kind of a name is Le Comte Dominic de Charmentier? He sounds as pompous as a proud politician, but yet he’s this criminal mastermind that pretty much spouts at the mouth like a fountain telling Bennett Grey the reason for his actions, and then he’s going to off himself with his own gun. It all seemed a bit too Candy Land for me. *END SPOILER*
I received this book for free through NetGalley.