Every once in awhile a book comes along that gets good buzz but that I just didn’t like. Samantha Shannon is supposed to be the next J.K. Rowling and signed a 7-book deal, but I couldn’t get through a preview copy of the mega-hyped The Bone Season. Unfortunately, this is also the case with Melodie Johnson Howe’s City of Mirrors. I was able to finish it but found it difficult to do so; it just wasn’t interesting to me at all.
The subtitle of the novel is A Diana Poole Thriller #1; Howe is on record saying that there will be more. Poole is living in her deceased mother’s shadow, as her mom was a very famous actress, and Poole struggles to get roles. However, she is starring in a movie with young starlet Jenny Parson, who Poole later finds murdered. Not content to rest on her acting chops, she of course plays detective and winds up getting caught in a dangerous web of lies and deceit. Along the way, there is a forgettable cast of characters such as Diana’s love interest, her best friend, and the movie’s director.
As a book reviewer, I am usually reading three or more novels at a time. I found myself hurrying up with this one so I could get to the other ones I’m reading nowadays. While Howe admirably fills in the big puzzle and doesn’t leave any holes, I just didn’t care about any of the characters; none were likable, including the murdered Jenny. And without any redeeming qualities, the characters didn’t make me that interested in this murder mystery.