Gail's Reviews > This is Where I Leave You

This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper
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's review
Aug 11, 2009

it was amazing
bookshelves: contemporary-fiction, favorite-authors, book-club
Read in October, 2009

To the critics who compare the Foxmans to the Bluth family, it's a comparison well made.

"This is Where I Leave You" tells the story of the Foxman family — four siblings and a mother — grieving the death of their father who they believe wants them all to sit shiva (they are Jewish) for the week following his death.

The book is told from the voice of Judd Foxman, who joins in the shiva just as his life is falling apart: a cheating spouse who tells him on the day of his father's death that she's pregnant with the guy she's been cheating on Judd with — who happens to be Judd's shock-jock radio boss.

When Tropper does it right in this book, he does it REALLY right. Certain passages were so laugh-out loud funny I had tears at the corners of my eyes. I also thought certain passages about the grief Judd encounters were powerful as well.

The father of this book reminded me of my own dad — himself an electrician and a man of few words. There's a passage at the end, during which Judd is going through his dad's possessions, that just felt so true to life, that these are the same steps that some day, we'll all have to endure with the passing of our parents, that I felt I was right there going through a bureau that was my father's, not his.

My one key fault with the book is how obsessed with sex Judd is - not just in passages, but the entire novel. It's as if, instead of being told by a 30-something, it's being told by a 14-year-old teenager. Some of the language is lewd and crude and that might have done the book in for me but it is the sarcasm, hilarity and wit of Tropper's work overall that saved it for me and made it the quick read it was.
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Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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Jonathan Everybody in!

A friend of the Bluths is a friend of mine.

Gail Giddy-up! (oh wait, that would be a Seinfeld reference...wrong show ;)

PS - Maybe in reading this we can feel a connection again to the Bluths that might COSMICALLY finally make that film HAPPEN. One of these days we'll see that gang up on the big screen ;)

Noelle Not at all like the Bluths.

Erin Funny though that Bateman ended up
playing Judd in the movie. He does have a knack for putting the fun in dysfunction.

Gail Erin wrote: "Funny though that Bateman ended up
playing Judd in the movie. He does have a knack for putting the fun in dysfunction."

Doesn't he though? I thought he really shined in this movie. The whole cast, really...I would have never seen Adam Driver as Phillip (I didn't know he was an actor when I read this) and yet I thought he was perfect in that role.

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