Sovotchka's Reviews > The Imperfectionists

The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman
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Apr 05, 2015

it was amazing
bookshelves: reviewstatus-reviewed, rating-5stars-fiction-nf, fav-read-2011, type-short-stories, 0
Read in July, 2011 — I own a copy

Tom Rachman is an English/Canadian journalist who has worked for international newspapers all over the world. As such, he chose to write his first novel about the workings inside the headquarters of an international newspaper based in Rome.

The book basically consists of a lot of short stories, centered on key people working for the newspaper, with some interludes to keep the main plot going. It's quite an interesting idea to build a story this way, and a clever way as well, since the reader might treat every chapter as a story of its own and will therefore have no problem in reading the book over the course of a few weeks or even months. Plus, if one character is annoying as hell, there's always the promise that at the end of the chapter you'll be mostly done with him. The fact that none of the characters are perfect (just as the title suggests) but all portrayed in a very human way means that the reader can relate to (almost) everybody in one way or another. At the very least you will have met people like the ones described.

The main plot is also rather intriguing, even if it only starts developing about halfway through the book. I didn't expect it to end like it did but maybe there was no other possible ending for that kind of story. Without wanting to spoil anything I can't say much more but it should give rise to interesting discussions afterwards.

This certainly is no book if you're looking for romance and walking off into the sunset, but it provides studies of genuine characters and does it exactly what it says on the cover. Also, even though I tend not to believe the review quotes on the back, this is a case where I'd sign every single one of them.
Plus, can I just say that I love short stories!

4.5/5 stars ... decided to round up ;).

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