AUDIO BOOK REVIEW: The Plot by Jean Hanff Korelitz

Publication Date: May 11, 2021
Format: Audio
Genre:  Mystery/suspense
Narrators: Kirby Heyborne

Publisher: Macmillan Audio
10 hours 54 min
Buy: Kindle | Audio


Jacob Finch Bonner was once a promising young novelist with a respectably published first book. Today, he’s teaching in a third-rate MFA program and struggling to maintain what’s left of his self-respect; he hasn’t written—let alone published—anything decent in years. When Evan Parker, his most arrogant student, announces he doesn’t need Jake’s help because the plot of his book in progress is a sure thing, Jake is prepared to dismiss the boast as typical amateur narcissism. But then . . . he hears the plot.

Jake returns to the downward trajectory of his own career and braces himself for the supernova publication of Evan Parker’s first novel: but it never comes. When he discovers that his former student has died, presumably without ever completing his book, Jake does what any self-respecting writer would do with a story like that—a story that absolutely needs to be told.

In a few short years, all of Evan Parker’s predictions have come true, but Jake is the author enjoying the wave. He is wealthy, famous, praised and read all over the world. But at the height of his glorious new life, an e-mail arrives, the first salvo in a terrifying, anonymous campaign: 
You are a thief, it says.

As Jake struggles to understand his antagonist and hide the truth from his readers and his publishers, he begins to learn more about his late student, and what he discovers both amazes and terrifies him. Who was Evan Parker, and how did he get the idea for his “sure thing” of a novel? What is the real story behind the plot, and who stole it from whom?


I wanted to like this story but it all felt very familiar at least in the beginning.  When Jake learns that Evan Parker is dead and decides to take the plot and make it his own he didn't really steal the book he stole the plot which isn't technically the same thing nor would he be in legal trouble for it.  However someone is threatening Jake.  

I really didn't like Jake until close to the end.  I felt that he was a whiney man who didn't want to put in the work to write his next book.  He blamed everyone and everything around him for his failures. Even after he steals the plot and writes a book the whole world is reading he lives forever afraid that someone will find him out.  It isn't until he starts investigating Evan Parker that he begins to show a backbone.

I found The Plot to be predictable, I wasn't surprised by the ending, or even how things played out.  I could see them coming.  I appreciate the interesting book within a book way this is written but I almost stopped listening just due to the sniveling nature of the main character.  

I liked the narrator who did as much with the story as they could but overall I felt it was just okay. 

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