The Plot to Save America – A Novel
The year is 2024. The insurrection of January 6, 2021, was successful. The United States of America are recognizable only as the dystopia so many feared when Donald Trump was elected president. Against this backdrop, a Death Penalty Investigator (DPI) stumbles across a conspiracy while looking into the case of a police detective on death row for domestic terrorism. As he follows the trail of clues, the protagonist will find himself looking into a suspicious suicide and a secret that will tear apart the world he thinks he knows.
(It’s pretty easy to guess what the secret is. After all, many dystopian novels these days exist largely to show how the dystopia falls.)
I picked up this novel mainly for the conspiracy; I do like my mysteries to grow deeper and more involved with each clue unveiled. I was also interested in how Azrieli would present an America post-insurrection. I could easily guess how most writers would; would Azrieli surprise me at all? Would there be more nuance in his presentation than I might get from a brief scan of Twitter?
The answers to those two questions were a surprising combination of no and yes, respectively. While the broad strokes of this novel’s America were the exact sort of dystopia I expected, there was nuance in the details. Different people had different thoughts about living in the far-right country this nation had become, and some even noted there were both good and bad aspects to it. Whether the good outweighed the bad depended on each individual’s perspective.
Unfortunately, that perspective was almost universally delivered in a lengthy paragraph of exposition that, while it did always illuminate the character speaking, sometimes did so in a way that made them come across as a flat stereotype of a person. In some cases, this style of exposition was unavoidable; the early chapters especially are focused on the DPI’s investigation, and he’s often recording interviews with people. Sometimes, however, the narration was unprompted, delivered with a shallow motivation. Before long, the world-building overwhelmed the plot, and I found myself having to go back because I had missed the reason for the DPI’s choice of words or his next location.
The Plot to Save America has an intriguing premise, and the mystery is skillfully built for the first third of the book. After that, however, I rapidly began to lose interest. This book is one some people may enjoy, but only in the present moment. Unlike Azrieli’s Deborah series, I doubt it will have much timeless appeal.
|Page Count||246 pages|
|Bookshop.org||Buy this Book|
|Category||Mystery, Crime & Thriller|