If I were going to rate this book I would probably give it three point five stars out of five. But I'm not going to rate this book because I have so many thoughts on it. When I started the book I knew I wanted to give it a review but now that I've finished it I find that impossible. I gave myself twenty four hours to get my thoughts together but they're still confused. So here are my thoughts on Three-Martini Lunch not my review on it.
In 1958, Greenwich Village buzzes with beatniks, jazz clubs, and new ideas—the ideal spot for three ambitious young people to meet. Cliff Nelson, the son of a successful book editor, is convinced he’s the next Kerouac, if only his father would notice. Eden Katz dreams of being an editor but is shocked when she encounters roadblocks to that ambition. And Miles Tillman, a talented black writer from Harlem, seeks to learn the truth about his father’s past, finding love in the process. Though different from one another, all three share a common goal: to succeed in the competitive and uncompromising world of book publishing. As they reach for what they want, they come to understand what they must sacrifice, conceal, and betray to achieve their goals, learning they must live with the consequences of their choices. In Three-Martini Lunch, Suzanne Rindell has written both a page-turning morality tale and a captivating look at a stylish, demanding era—and a world steeped in tradition that’s poised for great upheaval.
I'm giving you the synopsis so you have a general idea of what the book is about. When I got the book I looked up the synopsis and saw it was about the publishing world in the 50s. I dream of being an editor in New York so of course I picked it up and started to read it. I got through the first few chapters, soaked in the first provs of each of our three main characters and kept going. After awhile I started to lose interest but something kept me reading and slowly my interest in the lives of these three different individuals piqued.
Suzanne Rendell had given us New York in the 50s from the eyes of three, completely different people. There was Cliff. A young man who had issues with his father and was trying to prove himself by becoming a writer. Eden, an ambitious girl fresh out of school in Indiana determined to become an editor despite the obstacles in her way. And Miles, a quiet guy who had a way with words and was trying to find his place in the world. All three of these characters with their different views, backgrounds, and opinions were trying to make it in the crazy city that is New York.
This book is all about the decisions and sacrifices you are willing to make to get where you want to be. Your choices in friends, hangouts, what you say, and even the way you present yourself could effect every aspect of your life. The decisions you make, whether they be good or bad, are always going to be with you. There is no redo you make the decision and you live with it. Are you going to chose to do the right thing or the wrong? Are you willing to pretend to be someone else to get what you want? Are you okay to use your friends, and family as a stepping stone to achieve your goals? Are you selfish enough to put yourself and what you want out of this life before everything and everyone you have?
There is a saying that you either make it or you fake it till you get there. New York was the place to be if you wanted to be someone. But it was also an unforgiving, ruthless place where if you couldn't hold your own you might as well leave. All the characters in the book quickly learn this and start to adapt themselves to fit in and/or make it to the top. There is a lot of pressure in this world to be a certain way or say certain things. A lot of times anymore you here people say "embrace your body" or "be as weird as you want to be" or some other thing like that. But if we're honest they're not being serious. You walk into places like Victoria Secret and see the flawless models on the wall or you go out with people and immediately know that if you say that they will see you differently. The world is a very judgmental place and so is everyone in it. And if you want something you had better be the person they want you to be.
All in all this book is one that makes you think. There were moments whilst reading when I'd just set the book down and stare at the wall, letting the words I'd just read sink in. The characters were people you could see on the every day street. People like you and me who wanted to know where their place was and who they were. You could see the wild, crazy streets of New York and smell the stale coffee and hear the scratch of a pen as you read this book. This book ws beautiful in a sad way. Beautiful because of the truth in it and sad because you knew it was the truth.