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Biloxi

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3.54  ·  Rating details ·  219 ratings  ·  53 reviews
Mary Miller seizes the mantle of southern literature with this wry tale of middle age and the unexpected turns a life can take.

Like her predecessors Ann Beattie and Raymond Carver, Mary Miller brings an essential voice to her generation. Building on her critically acclaimed novel, The Last Days of California, and her biting collection, Always Happy Hour, Miller slyly trans
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Hardcover, 255 pages
Published May 21st 2019 by Liveright
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  • Biloxi by Mary  Miller
    Biloxi
    by
    Release date: May 21, 2019
    "Miller's deliciously engaging, gently quirky, surprisingly hopeful novel seals her spot in the pantheon of Southern fiction writers.”
    - Kirkus Reviews
    ...more

    Format: Kindle book

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    Availability: 100 copies available, 1007 people requesting

    Giveaway dates: Jun 09 - Jun 21, 2019

    Countries available: U.S.

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    Community Reviews

    Showing 1-30
    3.54  · 
    Rating details
     ·  219 ratings  ·  53 reviews


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    Jenny (Reading Envy)
    Biloxi is about 62 year old Louis, who is trying to figure out how to live after his wife left, his father died, and he "retires" from his job.

    Louis reminds me of Ignatius J. Reilly (A Confederacy of Dunces) if suddenly left to his own devices as an older man, but not in a funny way. He doesn't really know who he is without his roles with other people, he doesn't know how to take care of himself (but then gets a dog,) and he does a lot of things out habit that he doesn't even enjoy (watching Fo
    ...more
    Diane S ☔
    May 16, 2019 rated it liked it
    3.5 thoughts soon.
    Jerry
    Feb 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    I've never been the kind of person to annotate or highlight passages in books--something about that practice always made me feel a bit like a vandal--but BILOXI by Mary Miller changed me in that regard. Throughout this charming and delightful novel I found myself marveling at the author's turns of phrase and her wry observations of human (and animal) behavior, and in turn, tapping the highlight button on my Kindle to mark the passages for future reference.

    As a recently retired 61-year-old man,
    ...more
    Lisa
    Mar 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Thank you to W.W. Norton for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

    This book will be released May 21, 2019.

    Loved it. The character of Louis McDonald, Jr was both simple and complicated at the same time if that makes sense. The real star of the book is of course Layla - the overweight dog that frequently gagged.
    Juliet Escoria
    Apr 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    I laughed a lot at this book. Mary Miller as a 63-year-old divorced man is hilarious, sharp, and feels true to life. It's also deceptively heart-warming, in a way that I found both surprising and gratifying. This was a quick, smart, nuanced and all together very enjoyable read.
    Barb (Boxermommyreads)
    So I have really mixed feelings about "Biloxi." They don't take away from the fact that I'm glad I picked this book up, but truth be told, I didn't enjoy it as much as I anticipated or hoped.

    Louis McDonald is 63 and just quit his job. His father recently passed away and expecting to come out on the winning end of the inheritance, he decided why continue working. He's also recently divorced and to say that his relationship with his family is strained is an understatement. One day while on the wa
    ...more
    Booknblues
    Well, Biloxi was an odd book for me. Everything about it said that I should love it, but I came close to hating it. We have a grumpy old man, one Louis McDonald Jr. which I usually love as a main character. We have a dog, who doesn't love a dog, even one that gags can be lovable. Miller is a gifted writer, I love her voice and she can be downright funny.

    Louis is not endearing as Ove is in A Man Called Ove. Louis is annoyingly pathetic. He lives alone since his wife left him and he clearly doesn'
    ...more
    Marian
    Jun 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
    It was a good book, but it made me feel like life is so depressing. :(
    Pam
    May 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: first-reads
    I won this book in a Goodreads Giveaway. Louis was an exasperating character but I found myself liking him. In a way, the writing reminded me of some of Ann Tyler's work. I thought several times "I know these people."
    Emmy
    Mar 31, 2019 rated it liked it
    Honestly, I'm not sure what to think of this book. I had intended to begin the review along the lines of "Do you like bologna and feet? Well, then you and Louis McDonald Jr. should get along just fine!" but about three quarters into the book, I started to have doubts.

    You see, this is not a great book. Louis is an awful person and the people he surrounds himself with aren't much better. The story is about Louis--60's, divorced, and something of a putz. He ends up getting a dog (long story) and it
    ...more
    Nan Williams
    Apr 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Recommends it for: Seniors
    This is a view of a 63 year old man who has simply given up on life. His father has died and his wife has left him. He barely knows his married daughter nor his granddaughter even though they live just 20 minutes away. He’d taken early retirement from his insurance job. His friends have abandoned him. Everyone or everything that was important to him has either left or rejected him. He is a study in loneliness, hopelessness and despair. He tries to find a “new life” in various ways, including hel ...more
    Brian
    Apr 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Louis, a 63 year old man who has a wife who left him lives a pretty solitary life. His wife's brother comes to visit him and brings him leftovers often. One day, Louis drives and sees a sign advertising a free dog. He meets a man who gives him Layla, a dog with a lot of character. Louis discovers a secret about the dog that eventually leads him to some very interesting interactions. This was a very strange book with some unusual character descriptions. I did like the author's writing style and h ...more
    Ellen Prewitt
    Jun 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    Whenever I read a book I really like, I come to Goodreads and read the "bleh" reviews to remind myself that connecting with a book is a matter of taste, and the key is finding books that suit your taste. It's harder than it sounds. If I'd gone by the book jacket, I would have never bought Biloxi—it's not my subject matter (older white male who's recently lost a loved one tries to figure out life) and, in fact, I recently put down a similar book because it was boring, boring, boring. The differen ...more
    Jenny
    Jun 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Well I do love a good quirki-hero, the grosser and more awkward the better. Louis does not disappoint and there's a dog too! This time the hero even has some positive character development. I really like this one.
    Mary Tygett
    May 28, 2019 rated it liked it
    I feel like this book held so much promise and didn't deliver.
    Shawn
    May 26, 2019 rated it liked it
    3 1/2 stars.
    Sherwestonstec
    Apr 07, 2019 rated it it was ok
    Why are so many books written with whiny unhappy main characters with no redeeming qualities? Louis is an alcoholic who is living a miserable existence. He has many strange and awkward meet ups with some very unappealing people. The only likable characters in the book are Layla the dog, his daughter Maxine and granddaughter Lauren. A short book that seemed long and at the end he vows to change, but does anybody really care? I would not recommend this book.
    The
    Mar 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    A charming tale! For anyone who enjoyed A Man Called Ove, you'll be sure to love Biloxi. It felt like a coming of age for old people (I'm 65, so I know), but that didn't exactly make sense. Then towards the end, Louis, our protagonist, describes it as his three-quarter-life crisis. That was closer to what I was looking for, but not quite. Because Louis doesn't try to recapture his youth, he just starts to enjoy his life, he gets comfortable in his own skin.

    Thanks to the publisher and to NetGalle
    ...more
    Debbie
    Jun 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    Shelves: highlyrecommend


    Louis McDonald Jr is sixty-three, overweight, and alone after his wife of thirty-seven years leaves him and his father dies. He’s also unemployed because he impulsively chooses early retirement in anticipation of a large inheritance—something his entire life seems to depend upon. A busy day is one in which Louis completes at least a few errands-- like picking up his diabetes pills, then buying liters of Pepsi and perhaps some Kit Kats (because why not?). Louis likes beer, can’t remember the last
    ...more
    Autumn
    Jun 11, 2019 rated it liked it
    2.5 Stars

    I picked this up after seeing it somewhere on Instagram, as I've been in the mood for something light to read. One assumes with a cover like this: bright colors, cute font, a dog- that it would be a light read, but it's actually not. I found it to be sad and even depressing at times. This is a novel that follows Louis, a man in his early 60's who has recently been divorced and is also recently retired. He's waiting for a large inheritance to come in from his father's estate when the nov
    ...more
    Shari Wampler
    Jun 08, 2019 rated it liked it
    Shelves: 2019
    www.thenextgoodbook.com
    Biloxi by Mary Miller
    254 pages

    What’s it about?
    Louis is a sixty three years-old and his wife has left him. He spends his days watching TV and avoiding people. His only company comes when his ex brother-in- law Frank brings him his leftovers from Chili's. One day Louis is out in the car and takes a wrong turn to avoid running into his ex-wife. He stops and sees a sign about a free dog. Louis and the dog (Layla) take to each other immediately. Soon Louis and Layla are insepa
    ...more
    Molly Riportella
    Mar 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    Sixty-three-year-old Louis McDonald, Jr. has seen better days. His wife, Ellen, has left him after 30+ years of a cheerless marriage, he has recently retired, and his remaining family, including his ex-brother-in-law and Louis's daughter Maxine and her young family, all but exasperate him. But when Louis comes across a free dog named Layla, life begins to speed up. Suddenly Louis is meeting women, dodging enemies and actually feeling all the highs and lows that life thrusts upon us all. With Lay ...more
    Rebecca
    Jun 07, 2019 rated it liked it
    Recommends it for: adults
    I bought this book immediately after reading numerous reviews praising it. I was a little disappointed - which just goes to show how everyone's tastes in books, wine, theater, politics (you name it) is different. Perhaps I was drawn in by the reviews which mentioned that the plot revolves around a dog, sort of a rescue pet situation, and this dog forever changes the depressing life of Louis McDonald, Jr. There are some laugh-out-loud moments in this book, and someone might eventually make it int ...more
    Mary Lins
    Jun 10, 2019 rated it liked it
    Shelves: complete
    I’ve never read anything quite like Mary Miller’s new novel, “Biloxi”, and I’ll bet you haven’t either. The entire time you are in the unfiltered brain of Louis McDonald Jr., in his early 60s and recently retired, whose father has died and whose wife has left him. Louis takes a detour to avoid his ex-wife and winds up “adopting” a dog, Layla (like the song).

    Louis lives a strange life, and he thinks strange thoughts, and after acquiring Layla he obsesses about Layla’s former owner’s wife, which
    ...more
    Kim McGee
    Mar 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
    A charming tale of a newly divorced, retired man who is lost. Louis McDonald Jr. is waiting for an estate to be cleared and then he can live it up but he really doesn't know how. His relationship with his ex is a mess, his daughter doesn't understand him and even his best friend feels he has to bring him leftovers on a daily basis. He really doesn't know what he wants or how to get it until a border collie named Layla is thrust into his arms and his heart. She seems to be someone who can help Lo ...more
    Lori
    May 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    This book was a delightful, surprisingly good read. I had half-expected to be let down by it since I had seen comparisons to A Man Called Ove, and I couldn't imagine liking this one as much. Although both books have curmudgeons as the main characters, they couldn't be more different. The author did a great job bringing Louis and the other characters to life, and I also found the Biloxi locale to be a nice change and very atmospheric. It gave what could be a very realistic view of life for a newl ...more
    Beth
    Jun 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    Shelves: southernfiction
    This is the funniest and most enjoyable book I’ve read this year. Mary Miller reminds me of Jill McCorkle, which is about the highest praise I can give. Their styles of humor are very, very close. She also has a little bit of George Singleton about her. Mix this with some Eleanor Oliphant and I think you’ve got the idea.

    The theme is human connection, but in an unsentimental rather than a sappy way. It’s being promoted as a book about a curmudgeonly older man who adopts a dog, but that implies (a
    ...more
    Lynn
    Jun 12, 2019 rated it it was ok
    Louis is a 63 year old man going through a life crisis after the death of his father and the dissolution of his 37 year marriage. He is purely alone with no idea how to fix that situation and, seemingly, without much desire to do so. He pushes everyone left in his life away, drinks too much, eats lots of junk food, ignores his diabetes and watches mindless TV shows. That is Louis' life until a random decision to get a dog changes everything. Not what you might expect. Louis is no one I would wan ...more
    Kelly Well Read
    Mar 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    Shelves: 2019, favorite-reads, parc
    I really loved this story: the writing, the characters, and the pace that kept me turning the pages to see what would happen to curmudgeonly Louis and his very special canine companion, Layla. Both of them were very "human" in their own way, and relatable. I found myself pausing many times over passages in this book, even highlighting quite a few, as they offered wisdom and insight I wasn't expecting from a tale such as this. I will look forward to recommending this one, as it deals with issues ...more
    Donna Hines
    Jun 15, 2019 rated it liked it
    Shelves: arc, netgalley
    To say this book was odd would be an understatement as I'm not sure what to make of it.
    It felt like a hodge podge of ideas in which as grumpy man whose reached his prime is having a hard time with life in general, falls in love with a scruffy mutt, and goes on an excursion together avoiding the pitfalls of ex wives and his own offspring.
    Suffice to say it's an unlikely pairing but it wasn't that exciting so for me it's just a basic ok read but nothing to really capture the moment or build upon it
    ...more
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    289 followers
    Biloxi, Always Happy Hour, The Last Days of California, Big World

    Stories in Paris Review, McSweeney's Quarterly, American Short Fiction, New Stories from the South, Oxford American, Mid-American Review, Ninth Letter, Indiana Review, and Mississippi Review.

    Nonfiction in the NYTBR, American Book Review, The Rumpus, and The Writer.
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