Review: The Editor by Steven Rowley

Title: The Editor

Author: Steven Rowley

Pages: 320 Pages

Publisher: The Borough Press

The Blurb

After years of struggling as a writer in 1990s New York City, James Smale finally gets his big break when his novel sells to an editor at a major publishing house:none other than Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. Jackie, or Mrs. Onassis as she’s known in the office, loves James’s candidly autobiographical novel, about his own dysfunctional family.

As Jackie and James develop an unexpected friendship, she pushes him to write an authentic ending, encouraging him to confront the truth about his relationship with his mother. But when a long-held family secret is revealed, he realises his editor may have had a larger plan that goes beyond the page…


The Review

The Editor by Steven Rowley is the story of James Smale. After years of toiling away writing his book is about to be published. His editor is none other than Jackie Kennedy. Whilst he cannot believe his luck that he is getting to work with such an iconic person he soon learns that she has a knack of getting more from her clients. More than even James wanted to give.

Concurrent to the story of the relationship between writer and editor we see the story of James and his family and the dysfunction that has led to his creativity. The Editor marries together the two aspects of protagonists James Smale’s life and shows how one cannot really exist without the other.

For me, the most interesting part of this novel was learning about Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and her career in publishing. Jackie O is such an iconic figure in history who is sometimes swallowed by the sadness that befell her during her time as First Lady that is was nice to see her as a more fuller person even if it was a fictionalised account.

The Editor by Steven Rowley is available now.

For more information regarding Steven Rowley (@mrstevenrowley) please visit

For more information regarding The Borough Press (@BoroughPress) please visit

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