The second novel that I have read by author Jonathan Tropper, which I thought was profoundly entertaining and heartfelt, tackles the subject of death...moreThe second novel that I have read by author Jonathan Tropper, which I thought was profoundly entertaining and heartfelt, tackles the subject of death of a spouse while leaving behind her husband and his having to deal with her deeply troubled teenaged son...along with various family members and neighbors who want to help him recover in different ways. Doug Parker loses his wife to a planecrash and has to deal with the ramifications of being a young widower trying to move on and find solace in his everyday life while missing his wife terribly. Not wanting to wake up everyday and admit that his dead wife, Hailey, would have wanted him to move on and live his life, he drinks too much, decides to stay home from work, and just sleeps his life away until his teenage stepson wants to move in with him after a falling out with his father. Doug realizes that his stepson needs him, so he decides to live and re-start his life. During the somewhat comical and engaging novel we meet his twin sister, Claire, who curses constantly while she decides if she loves her husband and wants to stay married to him, Doug's father who has suffered a stroke and has trouble recalling what has happened in the past and present, and Russ' high school guidance counselor who Doug becomes attracted to. The novel reminds us that no matter how annoying and wacky our family members can be, their help in the most dire of circumstances could be beneficial while along the way life can be unpredictable, and we could be thrown some unsuspecting curveballs. Just loved this Jonathan Tropper novel!
Zack King has it all...a well paying job, an extravagant apartment that he shares with his best friend, Jed, and a beautiful fiancee', Hope, that anyo...moreZack King has it all...a well paying job, an extravagant apartment that he shares with his best friend, Jed, and a beautiful fiancee', Hope, that anyone would die for. But...Zack is not happy. He hates his job whereby he is the middleman in a supply chain corporation and longs for his dead friend's wife, Tamara. Also, after years of being abandoned by his father, he re-surfaces telling Zack that he has changed and wants to be in his kids' lives, which also includes brothers Matt and Peter. The brothers, Zack and Matt, don't want their dead-beat dad, Norm, around because he hurt their mom with his multiple affairs until they find out that he has fathered a young boy, their young stepbrother. Whereby Zack's brother, Peter, who is mentally challenged, does not understand why they don't want their father around because he has missed him terribly. As Zack deals with his newly returned father, he also revels in the consequences of losing his best friend, Rael to an automobile accident a few years ago, and now the question is, should he dump his fiancee' or tell Rael's wife, Tamara, how he feels about her? A novel full of laughs and heartache that involves the emotional sentiments of forgiveness and acceptance. (less)
This is the second book that I have read written by Joyce Maynard, who writes books about real-life situations. This book was narrated by a young boy...moreThis is the second book that I have read written by Joyce Maynard, who writes books about real-life situations. This book was narrated by a young boy of 11 who lives with his mother, Adele, a divorced woman, who at one time, loved to dance, and because of a painful past, now really nevers leaves their house. While shopping in a department store for pants to go back to school after summer vacation, young Henry is approached by an older man that appears to work in the store. Henry thinks that there is something not right since his nametag says "Vinnie" but he introduces himself as "Frank". Frank asks Henry for his help, and the pair meet up with Henry's mom. Soon the trio are on their way to Henry's house. Frank is a patient and compassionate man who eventually tells his sad story to Henry and Adele during the six days that he spends with them on "Labor Day" weekend. Adele has a sorrowful story of her own that is shared by Henry throughout the novel. And, Henry describes how he is coming into his own as a pre-teen...trying to discover how is body is changing and why he constantly thinks of girls. A book full of painful tragedy that is full of hope for the future and timeless love for three, so to speak, misfits. (less)