Whitman Tagore is an up and coming British-Indian actress. She’s not quite the hottest stuff in town but she’s well on the way there. To help her, she has the support of Leo Milanowski, whom she calls on whenever she needs to change the narrative of what is going on in her life, for instance, when an ex is bad-mouthing her or she’s messed up and done something she shouldn’t have. Along comes Leo and they are suddenly the greatest love story of the century and Win (as Whitman is known) is on the up again. In short, their perfect on/off relationship is not real.

Mikaella Clements and Onjuli Datta have been writing fiction together since they first met in 2013. They are now married and live in Berlin, where they write and study. Originally from Australia, Mikaella was highly commended in the 2019 Bridport Short Story Prize and shortlisted in the 2019 Galley Beggar Press Prize. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, the Guardian, the TLS, and the LA Review of Books, amongst others. Onjuli is British and was longlisted in the 2020 Desperate Literature Short Fiction Prize, as well as publishing non-fiction in the Billfold and Daddy Magazine.

Today I’m sharing my thoughts about The View Was Exhausting by Mikaella Clements and Onjuli Datta. My thanks to Headline via Amazon Vine for the proof copy of the book.
Together they control the narrative.
Except this time, on the shores of Saint-Tropez, Leo is hiding a secret that is about to send Win’s world spinning. Now everyone’s dream couple must confront the messy reality of their relationship. Just as they’re starting to realise that they might actually be falling in love…

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Leo just wants to enjoy life, and shift press attention away from his dysfunctional family.

Whitman ‘Win’ Tagore and Leo Milanowski are the greatest love story of our time. International movie star meets the beautiful son of a millionaire. Their kisses write headlines and their fights break the internet. Nobody needs to know it’s not real.
I was drawn to The View Was Exhausting because it sounded like a hot summer celebrity novel and it is that in some ways.

A bold, swoon-worthy and utterly modern debut novel about truth, fame and privilege – and how we love now.

Win knows that Hollywood demands perfection – especially from a woman of colour.

The View Was Exhausting was written by two authors, a married couple, and that did work well in that it felt seamless. Their writing is good and this is a thought-provoking novel that really made me think about how a good publicist can work wonders. Ultimately though, it just didn’t have the X-factor I was hoping for.

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