Review: Speak Easy

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Speak EasySpeak Easy by Catherynne M. Valente
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have mixed feelings about this on a first read. While Cat Valente’s writing style is always luscious and overflowing like a fountain, perfectly capturing the slang, essence, and style of the 1920s, I don’t think it helped favourably the pacing and narrative of the story. Barely over 140 pages, it felt enormously longer to read. What seemed to be the story of Zelda turned out to be the story of Frankie – which follows the obvious parallel between Frank Scott Fitzgerald and Zelda Sayre maybe a little too close for narrative delight. And like the innumerable rooms where the action takes places, it seems this book is a whole lot of beginnings, until we get to the basement and rush to the end so fast that you barely noticed you got there at all.

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