The Green-Eyed Monster

The Green-Eyed Monster - Mike  Robinson

I really liked the basic idea of this, and I even liked the concept behind how the book was organized, but in the end, this really didn't work for me.


One of my biggest stumbling blocks is our "main" characters. They aren't present throughout the novel. Some of that is probably due to the way the story is told primarily through the eyes of those around them, but Martin and John are known for being charismatic and hard-to-ignore in-story and yet it is remarkably easy to forget that they are supposed to be the center of things while reading. They somehow feel like one of the least interesting parts of the story. People talk about them, and it is suggested they are causing some things, but it is rarely seen at any point and it's hard to care much about the ramifications of the opening scene of the novel when it is so hard to care about these two men.


Now I get to stumble around trying to come up with words to explain something I almost never talk about in books, curiously enough: language. As far as I am concerned, if I am not actively highlighting it on my Kindle and adding notes remarking on how ridiculous I find it, the language is fine.


There were lots of notes here.


Things just did not ring true in places. The metaphors were overwrought and didn't hit the ideas clearly, the dialogue varied between "serviceable" and "nobody says that and nobody should say that," and I just kept getting pulled out of the story to wince at something I had just read. It is not the worst I've ever read, certainly, but it is one of the few times my immersion has been so constantly broken because it wasn't always awkward, but when it was, it was really awkward.


The book stumbles a bit at figuring out what it wants to be. The genre is fluid, which does keep the reader guessing and wanting to get to the end, but also means quite a few things seem to come out of nowhere. If I had been more attached to the characters or the world, it probably would have been either very annoying or really fun, but without that connection I was left faintly bemused by the whole thing.