Maybe it is in the editorial context. I don’t know.
I just finished an otherwise good book with what seems like noticeable simple math/age error in the opening chapter. The narrator tells readers that her husband (a villain) proposed to her when she was 28 years old. And that they’ve been married for 2 1/2 years. Which would seem to indicate that she is at least 30 if not running up on 31, yes? Except then the narrator has a conversation with another character who chides her as being sheltered and not yet 30 years old.
How exactly does that math work?
Look, it isn’t that big a deal in the scheme of things for the book whether she’s 29 or 30 or 40. But when dates or years are specified, I do the math mentally. When it doesn’t add up properly, I spend time trying to figure out where/what I misunderstood and am jarred out of the story. Which is probably not the storyteller’s goal.
This particular author is sort of well-known in her niche and has, as I understand it, very good editors at the various publishers she works with. And yet this is not the first wonky math in her books: percentages adding up to more than 100%, timing that makes no sense unless major holidays are moved, etc.
Maybe things shifted in the editorial process. I don’t know. But I can tell you that as much as I enjoyed the book, what stands out is the not-quite-right age of the heroine based on the conflicting information provided.