Book Review

The Margot Affair


The Margot Affair by Sanaë Lemoine, a Book Review by @BarbaraDelinsky #TheMargotAffair #BookReview #books

Do you ever feel like not one of the books in the bookstore window appeals to you – that you’re out of the mainstream – that the “debut author” being hailed is just awful?

I feel that way about this book, THE MARGOT AFFAIR. It’s the work of a beginner, someone who has potential but needs to grow into it. And the praise it is getting from readers? I’m dumbfounded.

I’ll start with my two stars worth of praise. This book is based on a high concept – the story of a young girl in Paris who is the love child of an actress and a high-ranked politician. Her plight is portrayed well, perhaps as the author never even intended.

But it’s downhill from there. For starters, the narration of the audiobook was poor. I do lead off negatives with this, because it may be what ruined this book for me. This narrator is one-dimensional, unable to project different voices for different characters. Her voice is consistently young, like she’s 17, as the main character is, and just as self-absorbed.

What else? The story. Once past that high concept, I got bogged down in a mire of unlikeable characters, starting with the main one, who is ignorant of the consequences of her behavior one minute and, in the next, has the acute insight of a psychiatrist, understanding both of her parents, including the father with whom she never lived full time.

The relationship between the main character and her ghostwriter is weird, perverted almost.

And one scene in which the main character (remember, 17 years old) sleeps over at the home of this ghostwriter and her journalist husband, when she creeps out of her own bed at night, crouches down on the floor and looks under the door, through a crack, into their bedroom?

It is just plain dumb.  Through that crack, she sees their legs up to the knees, knows when they’re locked in each other’s arms, hears the sound of their lips as they kiss, smells their bodies? Puh-leeze.

Sorry, folks. If you’re reading this review, you likely read my books and expect a story that is believable, if not respectful, and well-paced. If I ever, ever wrote anything like THE MARGOT AFFAIR, you all would say I’d lost it.

And you’d be right!


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