Buda's Reviews > Life After Joe

Life After Joe by Harper Fox
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's review
Jun 28, 2010

it was amazing
Read in January, 2010

I want to come up with something pithy and brilliant to say about this book, but my heart is still racing from having finished it only 15 minutes ago or so.

The other reviews and the blurb give the story line, so I'll just give my impressions. Matt is deep in a self-destructive cycle six months after the break up of his 6-year relationship with his childhood sweetheart. Because of the way the relationship ended, Matt is left with zero self-worth, fighting a black depression. He turns to alcohol and meaningless one-night stands, the combination of which spin him further out of control. The author handles this beautifully, in that while the reader can see the self-destruction and wants it to end, there is also enough of Matt-the-good-guy there to cheer.

No head-hopping exists in this novel. The story is clearly Matt's and is told first-person, so the view we get of Aaron is only what Matt sees. Apparently that has rankled some, but that is the way the real world works--one never truly knows what is happening in another's head. The mystery, as it were, surrounding Aaron exists for a reason--if the reader had learned more earlier, the last part of the book would have been totally different.

Aside from British-isms I didn't completely understand (and which didn't cause me to pause long), I think Life After Joe is brilliant--an inspiring debut. I look forward to much more from Ms. Fox.
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