James Smale is thrilled to learn that his debut novel, The Quarantine, has caught the interest of someone at Doubleday. When he goes for a meeting at the editorial office, James cannot believe that the person who wants to edit his book is none other than Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. Jackie is captivated by his portrayal of a complicated mother-son relationship; however, she feels the ending needs work and sends James on a very personal mission that will require him to confront his own mother. James eventually exposes his mother’s long-kept secret, learning that his homosexuality may not have played a role in his parents’ divorce as he has always believed. What he learns instead is shocking. Meanwhile, James’ friendship with Jackie continues to grow over shared drinks and meetings in her own home. Ultimately, what he learns from Jackie is invaluable.
Although Stephen Rowley’s second novel has very little plot, the book itself is never dull. This can be credited to Rowley’s rich writing, which offers a fine balance between humor and sentimentality. Rowley is unafraid of exploring the growing cracks in a true to life family, doing so with finesse. Unfortunately Jackie’s character feels insincere at times, but overall Rowley’s imaginative depiction of her is a delight. The Editor will charm readers who appreciate nuanced characters with a lot of heart.
|Page Count||320 pages|
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