Tess Drake is a literary agent and the protagonist of The Agency. She’s smart, she’s good at her job, and she certainly loves talking about herself, which was the impression I got after reading this book. The Agency is a good mystery novel wrapped up in a vapid, materialistic, and soul-killing book. As I as reading through the book, there were parts where I wanted to throw it to the ground because I was afraid of how much of my soul was dying. In that aspect, the authors were good at describing the superficial lives of high-powered talent agents.
The story is told from the perspective of Tess. The first half of the book has her going on and on about her breast, her assistant’s breast, the breasts of her friends, and then her breasts some more. When Tess isn’t talking about the bodies of other women or bragging about her sexcapades, she talks about her plans to break out and start her own agency. By itself this sounds boring, but the mystery that builds from that is what makes the book.
The supporting characters in The Agency were so one-dimensional (such as drug addict brilliant writer with a tortured and haunted past and the power-hungry no-holds-barred bitch of a boss) and the main character so self-centered that it was hard to enjoy this book; there was just no redeeming character I could relate to.
Despite how much I disliked the book, I couldn’t stop reading it in the way I can’t help watching trashy reality shows. Mostly it was because I wanted to see Tess fail. I wanted her plans to go awry and wanted to see her penniless and alone. It was more than just schadenfreude. I just have no sympathy for her sense of entitlement.
If it wasn’t for the last third of the book, the apex and the huge reveal, I don’t think I could have continued reading it. It’s hard to say much without giving the mystery away, but I really was caught off guard by the reveal. That particular section of The Agency made me wish the rest of the book was better.
This isn’t the type of book I’d buy for myself, but I’m glad I got it for review. It was a quick and easy to read because the language was so fluid. The book left me with a sense of closure in regards to the story, but it didn’t end the way I wanted it to.