Billionaire in Prison by Shay Skyi, I read yesterday made me cringe. I didn’t like it the whole lot, because, well, there really wasn’t much to like, for there is a major plot hole I kept going back for, searching and never finding, but there was one thing that I thought needed mentioning, if not for others, then to myself too.
Understanding the work you write about. It wasn’t as if there wasn’t research behind it, for I could recognize some facts as copy pasted from online. But, let’s be honest – Google is not the best place to get the info on job descriptions. You should think of the job itself and that’s where this author went wrong.
Why? (What follows has spoilers, that’s why the hiding)The author’s choice of characters were a rich businessman, a top dog and warden. All powerful men. Then it went south. A businessman without much explanation tries to get along, so he seeks out the top dog. Fine. The fact that he pretty much offers his body in exchange – fine. The fact that he agrees to become a money pig for others, because the top dog asks him on the first day – seriously? I could understand if the character acted like a snobby little teenager, but he acted like a responsible, thinking grownup, who (as I understood) someone is trying to sabotage and is still under investigation. Would someone in that position really walk to the top dog and willingly become his money pig?
Then he got a meeting with the warden. This is where it really went south. A complete stranger, who has been in the prison less than a day, and the warden spills his guts, his deepest secrets on a plate?
As anybody in a difficult job, which is generally antagonized, knows – you never, and I mean never give out any information that can be used against you. Doesn’t matter if you are mob boss, warden, a lawyer, a dorm admin – if you are in position that means you are treated constantly as enemy of the state, you keep your mouth shut and for politeness maybe mention that yes, you’re married (or in relationship) or that you like football. You never give them details. NEVER. Else they will have you as side dish for their evening meal. Sounds harsh? Of course. This isn’t Kansas. This is a job, where anything and everything is used against you.
Plus. As a cherry on the cake. Think about it. Not afraid of spoilers, for there really isn’t any. The situation was built up so warden and inmate were in secret relationship. They’d been in it for some time it turned out. So why would they both make a board and announce it to a complete stranger, who just walked up to them to offer himself for protection? The moment he mentions he offered himself to top dog, the warden’s alarm bells should have gone off – he can’t be trusted, because he sleeps with whoever offers him protection. Yet instead he went and confirmed his information in a way that pretty much put him in the billionaire’s hands. The guy could waltz straight to his lawyer and get him fired in no time for incompetence!
The book had potential. But the characters… Open relationship – ok, I have no problem with that. But the way he acted, put himself openly between them and then pretty much declared that the couple now too had open relationship – how? Why? And then the warden was pretty much put in the situation, where he was told to either accept it or walk. And that is so wrong. I’d feel betrayed, forced into, played with. Especially if the inmate so easily let’s the stranger, who has known them less than a week or two, butt in so easily and take over. The author got over it with “sorry, I was jealous” as if he was the one at fault for his lover bouncing around without much discussion how acceptable that would be to his partner. I understand it had to lead into trisome, but at this point, I would have walked, walled up my heart and let them have their privacy and give them some hard time to think this over, for “I didn’t want to ruin your relationship” from the billionaire sounded more like adding salt on the wound.
Oh, and the off-corner talk about something that happened? What happened? Did you have limit on word count? It was 16 pages and I kept flipping through it, searching if I missed something. There is this constant talk about a big conflict and there just isn’t any in there! I know, because I read it three times. Which is two times too much considering everything else. God how I wanted to know what happened! That would either explain it all or explain it all! Is it a mini between large stories?
So many questions, so much promise and yet… Empty shots.