Lissa Albert's Reviews > This is Where I Leave You

This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper
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's review
Jun 30, 2012

it was amazing

This book begins with the main character being informed that his dad, who had been ailing, has died. The family - quirky, dysfunctional, emotional baggage-laden and all that jazz - gathers for a funeral and are informed that their father's last wish was for them to sit shiva for him. Not having been observant in the past, this family has to honor their dad's last wishes, and the fun begins.

And when I say fun, I do mean that. It is a laugh-out-loud book, poignant, funny, insightful, and has enough twists and idiosyncrasies for it to not be predictable. And it addresses how families are when thrown together in grief and mourning.

Funny bits - the description of what Judd did to his wife's lover when catching him in bed with his wife (and it involves an inadvertent fire - seriously, you'll either laugh out loud or you'll wipe tears from having stifled said laughter, as I had to do as I read that passage during my son's drum lesson). Another funny bit - an almost-2-page description of the physiology and physical, as well as emotional, effects of a man getting kicked between the legs...seriously amazing writing.

Hey, when one of the characters is a rabbi nicknamed Boner, you know it's as irreverent as all that. But it's more, and it does illustrate the familial dynamics in very keen ways.

Tropper is a gifted writer and this being the first of his novels that I read, it was a wonderful introduction to the quirky, poignant world he creates for his readers.
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