The Biology of Luck

The Biology of Luck - Jacob M. Appel

Odd-job queen Starshine Hart is about to go on somebody else’s perfect date. At 29, the usually carefree Starshine has realized that it is easier to start sleeping with a man than to stop. Her lovers include one of the last underground members of the Weathermen and the dilettante heir to a lawn chair magnate. Both men have staked their romantic future on her. Her only respite is her impending dinner with the nonthreatening but unattractive tour guide Larry Bloom. But Larry, too, has a stake in her future. He has written a book about their impending dinner in which he fantasizes about Starshine’s life on the day he wins her heart. Juxtaposing moments from Larry’s guided tour of New York City on the June day of his “dream date” with excerpts from the novel in which he imagines Starshine’s concurrent escapades, this inventive structure weaves a highly imaginative love story across all five boroughs. Provocative, funny, and keenly observed, an imagined pilgrimage through the underbelly of Gotham becomes a bold new voice in contemporary American fiction.


I received a copy of this book through a giveaway on Booklikes.


Before you read my review, make sure you read the summary. I'll wait...



Okay...the summary is probably all you need to read. I was expecting so much more based on this, but I found Biology of Luck to be...well, dreadful. 


I can't even figure out what was so particularly bad about this book. Usually when I read a book I truly dislike, I know exactly why I dislike it. With Biology of Luck, I cannot point to a single moment when I realized that this was a mistake. Maybe even at the first page.


I thought it was boring. I thought that Appel was trying way too hard to write a New York City novel. Starshine and Larry just felt overindulgent characters in Appel's imagination. They were not real, at all. There was absolutely no way to sympathize, empathize or even relate to them. They were shallow caricatures. 


I'm not sure how, or why I finished this to be honest.