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Man of the Year

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  152 ratings  ·  51 reviews
For one 1970’s family, the center may not hold, but it certainly does fold.

In 1978 Jimmy Carter mediates the Camp David Accords, Patti Smith tops charts with “Because the Night”, Suzanne Summers lets us all know that Three’s Company, too, and thirteen year-old Lou Cove’s free-thinking Jewish family moves from the Upper West Side of Manhattan to the Puritan wasteland of Sal
Hardcover, 307 pages
Published May 9th 2017 by Flatiron Books
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Average rating 3.91  · 
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 ·  152 ratings  ·  51 reviews

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Kevin Kelsey
Jun 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Posted at Heradas Review

"Howie is right: if we're all going to get whacked, what matters is who is standing beside you when the universe speaks your name. And it matters that you stand with them."

You simply must read this memoir. It was fantastic, and genuinely one of my favorite reads of the year. It’s endearing and thought-provoking, and a great conversation about the differing degrees of honesty and openness required in different relationships.

Being a child of the mid eighties, and growing u
May 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: no-no-please-no
I was sucker punched by an interesting description, unfortunately attached to a purely terrible book. Massively dull and laden with awful, clumsy dialog - no humans on earth ever conversed like this, in any place or any decade. Instead of an actual sense of place, you get endless reminders of where the characters are (Salem, Massachusetts!) and what decade it is (the 1970s!) , with one awkward pop culture reference after another, over and over, like a catalog of product placement. Which is proba ...more
May 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Man of the Year absolutely oozes with the Seventies, which for many has become something of a forgotten decade between the tumultuous Sixties and cocaine-infused, narcissistic Eighties. This coming-of-age story will be a blast to read for anyone who grew up during that time and is loaded with pop culture references that will surely trigger intense feelings of nostalgia.

I received this book as part of a Goodreads Giveaway in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Baer Tierkel
May 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Lou Cove's memoir of his 12yo self as he becomes a teenager in '70s America is fabulous! So awesome, completely captures the hue of the '70s, but his travails are truly timeless. He really is able to pull you completely into his young teenage brain as he deals with girls, weed, his family, and Playgirl magazine. Highly recommended (great father's day gift)
St. Gerard Expectant Mothers
Man of the Year is a hysterical memoir as seen through the eyes of 12 year old Lou who gets a lesson in growing up by an older family friend named Howie. Beginning in the late 70’s where bellbottoms, platform shoes, and polyester pants were all the rage, Lou and his family move from the comfort of his Jewish roots at the east coast into a suburban affluent community in Boston. As he adjusts into his current neighborhood, his family attempts to keep up with the Jones by adopting the ideal of the ...more
Aug 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
How I feel about this book got increasingly murky the deeper I got into it. The writing is consistently strong and the emotions quite vivid, both the humor and the pain. But the further the story went, the more I found myself wondering what the point was. I guess that's the problem with snapshot memoirs, in a way -- there really isn't a story, per say, more a series of events within a much larger, life-shaped arc that remains unseen. Because of this, my natural (?) need for narrative and conclus ...more
Jun 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Man of the Year was such a fantastic read. Every time I thought the story, based on Lou's life, was leading somewhere predictable in this coming of age tale, events unfold in a more natural and unexpected way. Especially with this unique and quirky premise, you may anticipate events to be overly dramatized but everything feels very real and grounded. This story will pull your heart strings as you follow Lou and his family and friends in a particularly enlightening moment in their lives who are j ...more
Mickey Tompkins
Mar 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed the book. I was kinda wondering where it was leading, and what was the point. Thanks to Dan for the birthday present.
Dec 10, 2017 rated it liked it
It bothers me that the description of this book on Goodreads misspells Suzanne Somers' name.

Besides that, I was a bit underwhelmed by this book. With blurbs from A.J. Jacobs and Jill Soloway, I thought it sounded great. It wasn't a bad book.. It just wasn't that good, either. I can't really pinpoint why. It seemed to end in a hurry. There's a rather big event, and then the author seems to just get over it and end the book shortly after. I wanted more follow-up. But the whole book is kind of just
Jun 22, 2017 rated it it was ok
I read 1/2 of this book and was disappointed that I had to end it. I loved the era (I mean who doesn't love the 1070's) and the writing style. It was easy to read and follow but it was just too crude for me. I know, I know, the whole story line is about a centerfold in a Playgirl magazine. I was ok with that, it was the crude writing the whole way through that made me finally say ....enough is enough.
Jamie Wickenhagen
May 12, 2017 rated it liked it
I would recommend this book based on the true-to-life, humorous memoir it is.

I easily connected to the writing which made me feel like I was taking a stroll down memory lane with a good friend. Now I didn't grow up in the 70's's but I certainly felt the history fly off the pages in this good read, so thanks.
Mar 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
I picked up the book because of the Playgirl centerfold plot line, but found my heart melting as I grew to identify with young Lou. He navigates his way through this moment in time, and the troubles, joys, life lessons and anxieties they brought him, with honesty, humor, some fine writing, and candor. As the book progresses, I silently cheered young Lou on with every page I turned.

The book taught me that young men face the same sorts of challenges as young women: who knew? An added bonus for me
Rhonda Lomazow
May 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A wonderful coming of age story full of nostalgia for me.Picked it up&was drawn right in,Thanks to Flat Iron &Goodreads for this wonderful trip down memory lane, ...more
Pamela Davey
Jun 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed this poignant coming of age book. I laughed at times and cried during others. Definitely worth the read especially if you grew up in the seventies.
Mar 09, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: reviews, memoir
This book was a miss for me. I almost put it down several times but pushed on in the hopes that it would get better. It didn't. I am a big fan of the memoir genre, and I enjoy memoirs of non-famous people just as much as those of celebrities. Lou Cove, while not a celebrity himself, had parents who were friends with a celebrity of sorts, if you consider porn stars to be celebrities (I do). That is the entire premise upon which this book was written, and it sounded fascinating. However, the perio ...more
Do discerning readers no longer have critical thinking skills? This is another fake memoir, in which 90% of it is told in impossible quotes from 40 years ago, when the author was between the ages of 10 and 14! Think of how much you could quote word-for-word from 40 years ago or from when you were 10 years old? Well this author claims that he can--then at the end of the book he admits that most of the names in the book are fake, that he "obscured certain details of persons," and that events are " ...more
Donna Blalock
Apr 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I loved Man of the Year. It brought back a lot of memories from when I was young. I could relate to everything from the movies to the music.

I thought the book was the perfect amount of funny and serious put together. It was extremely hilarious, had me laughing through the entire thing.

Do yourself a favor, get this book, Man of the Year is worth the read.

I received an advanced review copy of this book from the Author/Publisher from winning a giveaway on Goodreads.
Janice Cafarelli
Mar 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The memoir of a coming of age young boy and his very unconventional family. It takes you through the confusion of growing up and not knowing how to deal with the changes in his family dynamics
I could totally understand and feel what he was going through.. It captured my attention from beginning to end.
Tiffany Guthrie
Mar 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
From the very beginning, the book captured and held my attention. It was written beautifully, filled with humor along the way. I thought it was a great coming of age story, and it was easily relatable to. Please pick this one up!
Kathy Church
Mar 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I received this arc by entering a contest on Goodreads. I loved the book. I was 18 in 1976 and this book brought back a lot of memories. I can relate to the music, the autos and the times. Wonderful book.
Barbara Leuthe
Mar 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Loved the story.There is no better story than a true life story.Lou shares his ups and downs and makes the whole story so easy to relate to.Friends ,family and the struggles of growing up keep you reading.I received this book free as part of goodreads giveaways.
Jul 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: memoir, 2017
I had trouble getting into this book initially and I thought I might not finish it.

I was on my way to vacation and stopped at the local library to pick up something for my daughter. "Man of the Year" was on the new book shelf. It was a memoir. I like memoirs so I grabbed it. I knew NOTHING about the story, the author, or anything. It was total impulse. So on vacation I crack the book open and realize there is content that I don't need my kid to read about just yet. Oh I know she's going to be a
Stephen Sayers
Jul 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Lou Cove’s ‘Man of the Year’ is a beautifully written and evocative memoir of his strange and unlikely 13th year when a California couple casts something of a magic spell over Lou and his family. But young Lou learns that childhood innocence doesn’t last forever and that shooting stars only light the sky for the briefest moment.

Lou is hovering somewhere between boyhood and the complex world of a teenager when his family moves from New York City to Salem, Massachusetts. His eighth relocation in
Ann Rufo
Oct 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
It's safe to say that the raising of Lou Cove was fairly different from how I was raised - and I never considered my parents fairly strict or adultish (this is probably inevitable when you have kids at 20 and insist on sharing B Science Fiction Movies from the 70s with them while they are still in grade school). Maybe it was just a hippie era, or maybe there was something inevitably magical about Salem, or maybe some people are just going to be who they are no matter what, but whatever it was, i ...more
Dec 19, 2017 rated it liked it
This memoir recounts the story of Cove's twelfth year when his Dad's old friend, Howie, moves in and upends Cove's view of normalcy and possibility for ever. It's 1978 and Howie and his wife, Carly, are a free-spirited Calif. couple who believe in pot, free love, open marriage and total honesty. Howie has just posed naked for Playgirl magazine and with Cove's help, begins a campaign to become the skin rag's Man of the Year. Howie is Cove's hero, the man he hopes to be - handsome, confident, open ...more
Aug 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book! I devoured it in just a couple of days. While focused (in title and content) on the relationship between the narrator and an eccentric playgirl model, this coming of age memoir is really, in (strikingly rewarding) emotional terms about the relationship between a boy and his father . Cove does a lovely job of maintaining emotional suspense while keeping us engaged with a fun and interesting story. This book also captures a time and place, provincial North shore Massach ...more
May 11, 2017 rated it liked it
I received this book for free from a Goodreads Giveaway in exchange for an honest review.

I thought this book was well written and interesting. It wasn't a book I couldn't put down, but it was a story that held my attention. The last few chapters turned kind of dark which threw me off a bit but it did fit into the overall story.
And yes, I did Google the title character, Howie Gordon the Man of the Year. 😉
Jun 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
True coming of age story set in 1970’s. I thought this was a good summer vacation read. The storyline, told from the perspective of a 12 year old boy,) revolves around a family friend who poses nude for Playgirl and then tries to win as Man of the Year for their annual issue. This book isn’t for everyone - lots of drug use (the whole family smokes pot) and sex (12 year old boy coming of age, free love adults) so be forewarned.
Aug 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was an amusing and sad "coming of age story". I enjoyed it because it was set close to home, in Salem MA. The author did a good job of writing about his adolescent feelings around his evolving family 40 (or so) years later. I certainly remember the late 70's, and Cove captured the memorable cultural moments that impacted me as a late adolescent (despite the fact he is about 5 years younger than I).
Florence Fales
May 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
I entered the giveaway because it took place in Salem Massachusetts in the seventies. When I realized the content of the book I was skeptical. I gotta say, the Man of the Year by Lou Cove was very entertaining. The characters were very likeable. The twist in the story was surprising, but otherwise enjoyable.
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Lou Cove is the author of Man of the Year, a memoir about the year when he served as “campaign manager” for Playgirl Magazine’s Mr. November, 1978. It worked, Mr. November won, and Lou got to skip his bar mitzvah (he was 13 at the time).

Lou was an editor and journalist for the first ten years of his career, but his Man of the Year experience got him hooked on campaigns: He has raised more than $70

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