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Reviewed by Alma Boucher for Readers' Favorite
In Meatpacking: A Novel by Michael Heslin, Max grew up with her uncle on her mother’s side while her mother was in an asylum. Later, Max and her daughter Salome lived in a hardware store loft with no other rooms except the water closet. Max wrote jazz and nightclub reviews and typed them standing up. When it was very cold, Salome would sleep in her mother’s bed and her mother sang lullabies. She and her mother would wear their bathrobes over their street clothes all winter to stay warm. Max had a small icebox next to her bed that she used as a nightstand and where she would hide any present she had for her daughter. Salome would pretend to look everywhere in the loft while her mother sat laughing at her.
I enjoyed the complexity of the plot in Meatpacking by Michael Heslin. The story has many touching parts without slowing it down. It is fast-paced and full of action and suspense, which made the story very powerful and there never was a dull moment. I was on the edge of my seat the whole time and just kept turning the pages. I had to know if Max would be able to provide for herself and Salome, as she was uneducated. The characters were realistic, and I could relate to them. Each of them had a background that was described in such a way they could be someone I know. The story was well written, and Michael made an effort to make the characters memorable.