Mr. Peanut by Adam Ross – Review

This is going to be short, but I feel like I need to get back on the horse a bit with this blog. It’s supposed to be about books, writing, etc., and I think the last two or three posts is about me wrestling with a toilet. This is probably going to continue, as my life changes my interests and responsibilities shift, but I’m not going to abandon the lit thing entirely. so, on to Mr. Peanut.

For one, it’s a good novel, especially a first novel. At the same time, I couldn’t read the whole thing. It bogs down in the middle where I just lost interest. I ended up literally skipping pages because nothing was really happening. This sounds horrible, and I know it might turn people off entirely, and that I don’t like giving negative reviews (and sort of promised not to, especially for new authors, etc.) but it’s still a good read. It’s still worth picking up, and it might just not be up my alley as far as style and genre goes.

So, what is it about? It’s about a husband and wife, the trials of being married, and each trying to find happiness, purpose, etc. The husband tries it through secretly writing a novel about a husband secretly wishing his wife was dead and devising ways for it to happen but not be culpable. The wife eats a lot, and then tries to change that. there’s also a story about a detective whose past mirrors that of the main character’s current life in many ways.  The wife, of damn near everyone, ends up dead, and unraveling the hows and whys make up the last 3/4 of the novel.

As I said, I just got tired around halfway through and started skimming/skipping. Part of the problem was the novel, but part of the problem has also been the amount of time I’ve been able to allocate to reading.  It was read in twenty minute bursts, and it made reading it drag out. at the same time, I feel that probably a hundred pages or so could have been cut off and it would have been all the stronger for it.  It drags. It repeats. The bit with the detective/doctor is labored. There are times where it feels like Mr. Ross had two ideas for where the novel could go, and instead of picking one and running with it, he tried to fuse them together. it just didn’t work for me.

anyway, not a glowing review, but I encourage anyone to check it out.  It at least tries to do something, it’s a bit risky with its form, and it’s a decent read.

Go buy Mr. Peanut from Barnes and Noble.

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