Peregrine 12's Reviews > The Forgery of Venus

The Forgery of Venus by Michael Gruber
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's review
Dec 31, 2010

bookshelves: books-i-gave-up-on
Read from December 27 to 30, 2010

I just wanted a compelling story, but I got halfway through this one and had to give up. When the mental effort required of a story is greater than the pleasure extracted from reading it, then I have to throw in the towel.

Was the plot original? Yes. Was the main character real, likable, human? Yes. Did you care about the characters? Yes again, but... well, the stories-within-stories-within-stories required a lot of effort and ultimately became a bit wearing. I really just wanted to know what happened to the main guy; I could live without knowing the details of his first divorce, who painted what chapel in Italy in 1645 and how the mortar was mixed by hand, how cute his kids are, or all the name dropping of New York artists, etc. So much of all that didn't seem to contribute to the PROBLEM, the CONFLICT, also known as THE STORY, which is why one reads novels in the first place. Man, this could've been a good one. (Yeah, I'm a little frustrated.)

Maybe I'm way off base here, but this was a lot like reading Time Traveler's Wife - lots of details just getting in the way of things. In both cases I wanted to be swept along, but I just couldn't.

Kirk out.

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