Real Amazon Reviews

One star for Laura Lippman’s Baltimore Blues:

A Letdown for Rowers, January 11, 2010



This review is from: Baltimore Blues: A Tess Monaghan Novel (Tess Monaghan Mysteries) (Hardcover)

I read about one novel per decade. I picked up this one, having heard that it has characters who are rowers. (I myself row.) I was astonished, however, to encounter on page 10 a passage in which two rowers are in singles and one reaches out to touch the other. This is simply impossible to do! In fact, because of the way the oars and riggers stick out, it is impossible for two boats, side by side, to be more than eight feet from each other, and even then, there would be danger of capsizing one or both boats in subsequently separating them. Conclusion: the author, who has made her main character a rower, knows next to nothing about rowing! She has thus violated the cardinal rule of Creative Writing 101: write what you know about. I stopped reading.

This won’t, I realize, be an issue for non-rowers, but rowers who seek a novel about rowing would be well advised to look elsewhere!