The Good Mayor – Andrew Nicoll

It’s been a while, but that’s cause 1) I didn’t have Internet for over a month at the apartment I rent in Warsaw! 2) I had to move (hence the lack of Internet for a while) 3) I had to study (yes, I’m a student – again). 4) I was trying to read two novels that are completely out of my taste. One of them being “The Good Mayor”

This one was recommended to me by a colleague, but I sort of lost eagerness to read it after another colleague said she didn’t like it at and almost didn’t finish. Also, this is a freaking love story, and I’m done with love stories since I stopped reading Harlequins like 15 years ago. Of course I can’t judge a book before I give it a try, so reluctantly after it spent a month or two in my drawer at work, I finally gave it a try.

Well, as I already said it’s a love story, but it’s also a “magic realism” or a “realistic magic” or call it whatever you want to. It involves a witch, food and music – besides the love, of course. So, the story is like this – there’s a forgotten town called Dot, and it has a great mayor called Tibo Krovic. The mayor has a secretary, who’s a lonely woman, despite being married. The mayor is in love with the secretary, but feels he can’t express these feelings because of already mentioned fact that the woman of his dreams is married. Then, one day, due to an unexpected event, everything changes.

The premise is not very original, and I must admit neither is the novel. It doesn’t automatically make it bad – at least not in my opinion. Nowadays I feel nothing is truly original, and probably neither is any of the books I’ve written or have tried to write, so let’s drop this one. The problem I had with this novel, though, is that it was a little hard to read for me. The beginning (like the first two chapters) was okay, very smooth and I got through it with no problems, then it got a little harder. It sort of felt not much was going on in this book, and the characters were too plain, flat if you may. I didn’t attached to them at all, which is probably the main reason why I put this down after having read only 1/3 of it. Also, the details. They are important – but not when there are too many of them and are told in not-so-fascinating way.

The interesting part, though, was that it was told by a ghost of some saint, who wasn’t so saint as she is thought to be.

I don’t know what my problem is with this book. I simply couldn’t finish it and gave up. I seem to be losing too much time giving up on books I started. Yeah, well. At least I’m not losing time forcing myself to finish them.


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