Book Review

THE PLOT by Jean Hanff Korelitz

I received a complimentary ALC of THE PLOT by Jean Hanff Korelitz thanks to Macmillan Audio and Netgalley.

Rating: 4 / 5

Publication Date: 5/11/2021

THE PLOT follows struggling author Jacob Finch Bonner. After the release of a reasonably well received novel, he has struggled to follow it up. In the meantime he is teaching in an MFA program dealing with the next generation of writers who think they’ve got the story that will turn the publishing world upside down. When meeting one on one with an arrogant student, it turns out that he may not be wrong. From the moment Jake hears Evan’s truly unique plot idea he can’t get it out of his head.

Years later, Jake is feeling even less secure in his writing career, spending more time running a writing retreat than actually writing. He’s never seen his former student’s novel come out, so he does a bit of internet stalking. It turns out his student died not long after Jake met him which likely means he never even wrote the book. Jake convinced himself it’s a story that needs to be told and soon he is topping the best sellers lists. Problem is someone knows that the story idea wasn’t his and they are out to tell the world.

A book within a book, a writer protagonist and a twisty dark read all rolled up in one? This is my kind of book! The question of ownership over a plot idea was an interesting one. Jake is accused of plagiarizing the book, even though he did write every word himself. Jake walks himself through some mental maneuvering to convince himself that it is his obligation as an author to put this story out there, but his desperate need to keep the idea’s true origin a secret clearly shows that he knows he wasn’t entirely in the right.

I really enjoyed how the author wove bits of Jake’s book in with the plot of the THE PLOT, as Jake looks into his student’s past and the original source materials he drew from. While I did see part of the the major plot twist coming, I didn’t expect everything the author did along the way and I found it an incredibly gripping read. The audiobook was well done as well and the narrator did a good job delivering the story!

Overall, this is one to watch out for! THE PLOT is out tomorrow on 5/11/2021!

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