My issue with this book starts and ends with Daisy. As a very obvious Sherlock Holmes fan, I'm going to take a gander and guess that the author really enjoys Sherlock and not Elementary, because Elementary is a show about a steadfast partnership that might not have gotten off on the most perfect of starts but evolves into a friendship that is as equal and understanding of each other's faults and assets. I can tell that this author watches Sherlock because Daisy is Sherlock. Right down from her absolute arrogance, and her lack of mind for consequences - largely because she clearly grew up in an environment thoroughly lacking them, which is supposed to, I guess, make me feel sympathy for her, except that it merely makes me feel like she's an upper class privileged little miss. She's smart but she pretends to be not. She's rich, impulsive, that magical perfectly gifted level of intelligent that all Holmes and Holmes-archetypes these days now suffer, and never suffers emotional consequences of her actions and feels little to remorse manipulating and constantly abusing someone she apparently calls a friend, and uses her quite often merely as an errand girl, and gets away with it because Hazel is so starry-eyed for Daisy, whether she is angry at her or not, that she is unable to resist. God, it is quite literally as though the show Sherlock was imposed on this book, it's awful. It's such a horrible representation of a friendship that is damaging, but it's okay because hey, she apologizes once, right? The second half of this book is only bearable because of it, and even then Daisy exhibits clear privilege and dominance over Hazel.
The argument between the two of them in the book infuriated me, because again, the friendship feels entirely not like a friendship, as opposed a partial worship of an immigrant who understood and understands the immediate status quo of her, an Asian in a European country, and what is literally a white, blonde, blue-eyed girl. It is heart breaking to me, an Asian girl, to see my childhood rather well illustrated, but with none of the emotional and mature growth of me eventually realizing that this couldn't stand, that to consider white people better than me in an inherent fashion because they get the stories and the films - I picked this book up because an Asian girl was in it. And the book immediately starts with Hazel more or less being subservient to Daisy, talking about how she's happy to be the Watson. Not the Watson of Elementary, or even of Doyle's Holmes, who, in his different way, is respected and revered by Holmes, to the point that Holmes admits that Watson's knowledge of his actual profession (medicine) is equal/exceeds his own. The whole book I was desperately hoping that it turns out that Hazel is right, and that they abolish "Secretary" and "President" entirely, but only some of that happens, and it's certainly not enough. I certainly don't bloody understand why Hazel feels the need to apologize, and the scene is presented as though it's two friends understanding the error of their ways when it's pretty clearly been Daisy. Daisy shuts Hazel down. Daisy continually dismisses Hazel's totally valid fear of BEING MURDERED. Daisy is in fact Hazel's bully, according to their first meeting - AND THIS HARDLY CHANGES.
Probably I am one of few people who view the relationship (and the whole general show) of Sherlock to be frustrating, and definitely not a depiction of people who actually are friends. But if you do, then I guess you'd like this book. I'd probably give this a berth if you're Asian as well, because god, we already deal with this in day to day life, why would you subject yourself to more of it here, where it actually doesn't reach a point where you understand that white people are not inherently more interesting for their whiteness and just stays in a miserable status quo where having a basic modicum of decency leveled at you is the best you can ask for?
I'm going to go watch Elementary.