• Carmen Milligan

I just put down another book, for heaven's sake.

I'm starting to feel like I am not really giving books a chance. True, my mom has to be grabbed right away or she will put a book down. I try to employ the "hundred page rule", where I commit to reading 100 pages before I decide to abandon a book. But sometimes I just can't.

The book in question this time is "Who Is Vera Kelly?" by Rosalie Knecht. I was perusing the eBook catalog from my local library, and this one came up. Because I am a sucker for a great cover, I checked it out and started reading. Isn't that a great cover?


Shifting between 1962 New York City and 1966 Argentina, this is the story of how a financially-struggling young woman is recruited by the CIA, thanks to her technical prowess, quick wit, and sharp tongue. Great storyline, right? According to reviews I read, a lot of people loved it, but for very different reasons.


Vera is a gay woman, and she hasn't fully embraced her sexuality in 1962, but has in 1966. Now, understand that I am gleaning all of this from reviews.


Side note to book reviewers: You should really talk more about why you like a book rather than revealing storylines that may or may not be considered spoilers. Because they usually are. Tell us about the character development, the writing style, the point of view, etc. Not that she was chasing the wrong people the whole time.


Back to the reviews: a lot of people like it because they see themselves represented in an intelligently written spy novel, and not some sappy romance where being gay is the main struggle. A lot of people like the historical fiction aspect of the Argentinian coup in 1966. A few who didn't love the story loved the writing, calling it "lyrical" and "melodic". Basically, this book seems to have it all, and it packs it in in less than 300 pages.


But it didn't grab me, and I checked it back into the electronic library. I may pick it up again later. I think it would be a good "palate-cleanser" the next time I need one, so I am going to keep it on my TBR, albeit listed on the "put down" shelf, as well.


Reading now: "Malibu Rising" by Taylor Jenkins Reid. And it's a SIGNED copy!!

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