Review: The Body Politic by Brian Platzer

Good reads|Amazon

Release date: March 3, 2020

Publisher: Atria

Genre: Contemporary Fiction


New York City is still regaining its balance in the years following 9/11, when four twenty-somethings—Tess, Tazio, David, and Angelica—meet in a bar, each yearning for something: connection, recognition, a place in the world, a cause to believe in. Nearly fifteen years later, as their city recalibrates in the wake of the 2016 election, their bond has endured—but almost everything else has changed.

As freshmen at Cooper Union, Tess and Tazio were the ambitious, talented future of the art world—but by thirty-six, Tess is married to David, the mother of two young boys, and working as an understudy on Broadway. Kind and steady, David is everything Tess lacked in her own childhood—but a recent freak accident has left him with befuddling symptoms, and she’s still adjusting to her new role as caretaker.

Meanwhile, Tazio—who once had a knack for earning the kind of attention that Cooper Union students long for—has left the art world for a career in creative branding and politics. But in December 2016, fresh off the astonishing loss of his candidate, Tazio is adrift, and not even his gorgeous and accomplished fiancée, Angelica, seems able to get through to him. With tensions rising on the national stage, the four friends are forced to face the reality of their shared histories, especially a long-ago betrayal that has shaped every aspect of their friendship.


I don’t think I was in the right headspace for this book and I really should’ve thought about that before I picked it up. With all the uncertainty in the world I’ve been gravitating to lighter reads and this one was pretty heavy and depressing which is just not what I need right now. It’s not a bad book, in fact the writing was strong, but between the heavy subject matter and the feeling that the storyline was a bit scattered, I just couldn’t get into this one. I will say that while the characters weren’t very likable or enjoyable they were well developed and complex, but I didn’t like them all that much so it was hard to care about them. It also focused heavily on politics, specifically in 2016 and I get enough of that in real life and look to reading for a total escape. Not much more for me to say except I really wish I would’ve liked this one more because I thought I would.

Overall rating: 3/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.

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