Найдите свой следующий любимый книге

Станьте участником сегодня и читайте бесплатно в течение 30 дней
Mrs. Fletcher: A Novel

Mrs. Fletcher: A Novel

Автором Tom Perrotta

Читать отрывок

Mrs. Fletcher: A Novel

Автором Tom Perrotta

оценки:
3.5/5 (41 оценки)
Длина:
378 pages
6 hours
Издатель:
Издано:
Aug 1, 2017
ISBN:
9781501144042
Формат:
Книге

Описание

Now an HBO series starring Kathryn Hahn!

“Light, zingy, and laugh-out-loud funny” (People), the New York Times bestselling novel about sex, love, and identity as seen through the eyes of a middle-aged woman and her college freshman son.

A forty-six-year-old divorcee whose beloved only child has just left for college, Eve Fletcher is struggling to adjust to her empty nest. One night she receives a text from an anonymous number that says, “U R my MILF!” Over the months that follow, that message comes to obsess Eve. While leading her all-too-placid life—serving as Executive Director of the local senior center and taking a community college course on Gender and Society—Eve can’t curtail her own interest in a porn website that features the erotic exploits of ordinary, middle-aged women like herself. Before long, Eve’s online fixations begin to spill over into real life, revealing new romantic possibilities that threaten to upend her quiet suburban existence.

Meanwhile, miles away at the state college, Eve’s son Brendan—a jock and aspiring frat boy—discovers that his new campus isn’t nearly as welcoming to his hard-partying lifestyle as he had imagined. Only a few weeks into his freshman year, Brendan is floundering in a college environment that challenges his white-dude privilege and shames him for his outmoded, chauvinistic ideas of sex. As the New England autumn turns cold, both mother and son find themselves enmeshed in morally fraught situations that come to a head on one fateful November night.

“The sweetest and most charming novel about pornography addiction and the harrowing issues of sexual consent that you will probably ever read” (The New York Times Book Review), Mrs. Fletcher is a timeless examination of sexuality, identity, parenthood, and the big clarifying mistakes people can make when they’re no longer sure of who they are or where they belong. “Tom Perrotta’s latest might just be his best” (NPR).
Издатель:
Издано:
Aug 1, 2017
ISBN:
9781501144042
Формат:
Книге

Об авторе

Tom Perrotta is the author of several works of fiction, including Joe College and Election, which was made into the acclaimed movie starring Reese Witherspoon and Matthew Broderick. He lives with his wife and two children in Belmont, Massachusetts.


Связано с Mrs. Fletcher

Похожие Книги


В книге

Лучшие цитаты

  • When it was good, you could forget you were watching porn and accept it, if not as the truth, then at least as a glimpse of a better world than the one you lived in, a world where everyone secretly wanted the same thing, and no one failed to get it.

  • The more I heard about Michael Brown the more confused I got. Was he minding his business or had he robbed a store? Was he surrendering or trying to grab the cop’s gun? I’d heard different people say different things, and didn’t know what to believe.

  • It was one of those classes that actually made you think, in this case about stuff that was so basic it never even occurred to you to question it, all the little rules that got shoveled into your head when you were a kid and couldn’t defend yourself.

  • He was easy to talk to, a lot easier than my mom, though that was probably just because he was a guy, and because he never gave me the feeling that he was judging me, or wishing I was a dif- ferent person than I actually am.

  • But with two women, it was different somehow—a little more playful, and not nearly as creepy. Just a harmless fantasy, rather than something that reminded you of an infuriating article you’d read in the paper, or a bad experience recounted by a friend.

Предварительный просмотр книги

Mrs. Fletcher - Tom Perrotta

—Heraclitus

PART ONE

The Beginning of a Great Whatever

The Obligatory Emoticon

It was a long drive and Eve cried most of the way home, because the big day hadn’t gone the way she’d hoped, not that big days ever did. Birthdays, holidays, weddings, graduations, funerals—they were all too loaded with expectations, and the important people in her life rarely acted the way they were supposed to. Most of them didn’t even seem to be working from the same script as she was, though maybe that said more about the important people in her life than it did about big days in general.

Take today: all she’d wanted, from the moment she opened her eyes in the morning, was a chance to let Brendan know what was in her heart, to express all the love that had been building up over the summer, swelling to the point where she sometimes thought her chest would explode. It just seemed really important to say it out loud before he left, to share all the gratitude and pride she felt, not just for the wonderful person he was right now, but for the sweet little boy he’d been, and the strong and decent man he would one day become. And she wanted to reassure him, too, to make it clear that she would be starting a new life just the same as he was, and that it would be a great adventure for both of them.

Don’t worry about me, she wanted to tell him. You just study hard and have fun. I’ll take care of myself . . .

But that conversation never happened. Brendan had overslept—he’d been out late, partying with his buddies—and when he finally dragged himself out of bed, he was useless, too hungover to help with the last-minute packing or the loading of the van. It was just so irresponsible—leaving her, with her bad back, to lug his boxes and suitcases down the stairs in the sticky August heat, sweating through her good shirt while he sat in his boxers at the kitchen table, struggling with the child-proof cap on a bottle of ibuprofen—but she managed to keep her irritation in check. She didn’t want to spoil their last morning together with petty nagging, even if he deserved it. Going out on a sour note would have been a disservice to both of them.

When she was finished, she took a few pictures of the van with the back hatch open, the cargo area stuffed with luggage and plastic containers, a rolled-up rug and a lacrosse stick, an Xbox console and an oscillating fan, a mini-fridge and a milk crate full of emergency food, plus a jumbo bag of Cool Ranch Doritos, because they were his favorite. She uploaded the least blurry photo to Facebook, along with a status update that read, Off to college! So happy for my amazing son, Brendan!!! Then she inserted the obligatory emoticon and launched her message into space, so her 221 friends would understand how she was feeling, and could let her know that they liked it.

It took a couple of tries to shut the hatch—the damn rug was in the way—but she finally got it closed and that was that. She lingered for a moment, thinking of other road trips, vacations they’d taken when Brendan was little, the three of them heading to Cape Cod to stay with Ted’s parents, and that one time camping in the Berkshires when it rained and rained—the earth turning liquid beneath their tent—and they had to pack it in and find a motel in the middle of the night. She thought she might cry right then—it was going to happen sooner or later—but before she could get herself started, Becca zoomed up the driveway on her bicycle, moving so swiftly and silently it felt like a sneak attack.

Oh! Eve flung up her arms in self-defense, though she was in no danger of being run over. You scared me!

Becca shot her a withering what-planet-are-you-from look as she dismounted, but the contempt came and went so quickly it was almost like it hadn’t been there at all.

Good morning, Mrs. Fletcher.

Eve bristled at the greeting. She’d told Becca numerous times that she preferred to be addressed by her first name, but the girl insisted on calling her Mrs. Fletcher, as if she were still married.

Good morning, Becca. Shouldn’t you be wearing a helmet?

Becca released the bike—it balanced on its own for a moment before toppling dreamily onto the grass—and patted her hair with both hands, making sure everything was where it was supposed to be, which of course it was.

Helmets are gross, Mrs. Fletcher.

Eve hadn’t seen Becca for a few weeks, and she suddenly realized how pleasant the interlude had been, and how she’d failed to appreciate it, the same way you fail to appreciate the absence of a stomachache until the cramps return. Becca was so petite and adorable, so totally put together—that cute little turquoise romper, those immaculate white sneakers, all that makeup, way too much for a teenager riding her bike on a summer morning. And she wasn’t even sweating!

Well, then. Eve smiled nervously, acutely conscious of her own body, the doughy pallor of her flesh, the dampness spreading from her armpits. Something I can do for you?

Becca shot her that frosty look again, letting her know that she’d used up her quota of stupid questions for the day.

Is he inside?

I’m sorry, honey. Eve nodded toward the van. We’re just about to leave.

No worries. Becca was already moving toward the house. I just need a minute.

Eve could have stopped her from going in—she totally had the right—but she didn’t feel like playing the role of bitchy, disapproving mom, not today. What was the point? Her mom days were over. And as much as she disliked Becca, Eve couldn’t help feeling sorry for her, at least a little. It couldn’t have been easy being Brendan’s girlfriend, and it must have hurt pretty badly to get dumped by him just weeks before he left for college, while she was marooned in high school for another year. He’d apparently done the dirty work by text and refused to talk to her afterward, just crumpled up the relationship and tossed it in the trash, a tactic he’d learned from his father. Eve could understand all too well Becca’s need for one last conversation, that vain hope for closure.

Good luck with that.

  *  

Figuring they could use a little space, Eve drove to the Citgo station to fill the tank and check the tire pressure, then stopped at the bank to withdraw some cash she could slip to Brendan as a parting gift. For books, she would tell him, though she imagined most of it would go for pizza and beer.

She was gone for about fifteen minutes—ample time for a farewell chat—but Becca’s bike was still resting on the lawn when she returned.

Too bad, she thought. Visiting hours are over . . .

The kitchen was empty, and Brendan didn’t respond when she called his name. She tried again, a little louder, with no more success. Then she checked the patio, but it was pure formality; she already knew where they were and what they were doing. She could feel it in the air, a subtle, illicit, and deeply annoying vibration.

Eve wasn’t a puritanical mom—when she went to the drugstore, she made a point of asking her son if he needed condoms—but she didn’t have the patience for this, not today, not after she’d loaded the van by herself and they were already way behind schedule. She made her way to the foot of the stairs.

Brendan! Her voice was shrill and commanding, the same one she’d used when he was a child misbehaving on the playground. "I need you down here immediately!"

She waited for a few seconds, then stomped up the stairs, making as much noise as possible. She didn’t care what they were doing. It was a simple matter of respect. Respect and maturity. He was leaving for college and it was time to grow up.

His bedroom door was closed and music was playing inside, the usual thuggish rap. She raised her hand to knock. The sound that stopped her was vague at first, barely audible, but it grew louder as she tuned in to its frequency, an urgent primal muttering that no mother needs to hear from her son, especially when she was feeling nostalgic for the little boy he’d been, the sweet child who’d clung so desperately to her leg when she tried to say goodbye on his first day of preschool, begging her to stay with him for just one more minute. Please, Mommy, just one little minute!

Oh shit, he was saying now, in a tone of tranquilized wonder. Fuck yeah . . . Suck it, bitch.

As if repulsed by a terrible odor, Eve lurched away from the door and beat a flustered retreat to the kitchen, where she made herself a cup of soothing peppermint tea. To distract herself while it steeped, she flipped through a catalogue from Eastern Community College, because she was going to have a lot of time on her hands from now on, and needed to find some activities that would get her out of the house, maybe bring her into contact with some interesting new people. She’d made it all the way up to Sociology, circling the classes that seemed promising and fit her schedule, when she finally heard footsteps on the stairs. A few seconds later, Becca stepped into the kitchen, looking rumpled but victorious, with a big wet spot on her romper. At least she had the decency to blush.

Bye, Mrs. Fletcher. Enjoy the empty nest!

  *  

The previous summer, when Eve and Brendan were visiting colleges, they’d had some lovely long drives together. Lulled by the monotony of the highway, he’d opened up to her in a way she’d forgotten was possible, talking easily and thoughtfully about a multitude of normally off-limits subjects: girls, his father’s new family, some of the options he was pondering for his undergraduate major (Economics, if it wasn’t too hard, or maybe Criminal Justice). He’d surprised her by showing some curiosity about her past, asking what she’d been like at his age, wondering about the guys she’d dated before she got married, and the bands she’d liked, and whether or not she’d smoked weed. They shared a motel room on the overnight trips, watching TV from their respective beds, trading the Doritos bag back and forth as they laughed at South Park and Jon Stewart. At the time, it had felt like they were entering a gratifying new phase of their relationship—an easygoing adult rapport—but it didn’t last. As soon as they got home they reverted to their default mode, two people sharing the same address but not much else, exchanging the minimum daily requirement of information, mostly, on her son’s side, in the form of grudging monosyllables and irritable grunts.

Eve had cherished the memory of those intimate highway conversations, and she’d been looking forward to another one that afternoon, a last chance to discuss the big changes that were about to unfold in both of their lives, and maybe to reflect a little on the years that were suddenly behind them, gone more quickly than she ever could have imagined. But how could they share a nostalgic moment when all she could think about were the awful words she’d heard through the bedroom door?

Suck it, bitch.

Ugh. She wanted to press a button and erase that ugly phrase from her memory, but it just kept repeating itself, echoing through her brain on an endless loop: Suck it, bitch . . . Suck it, bitch . . . Suck it . . . He’d uttered the words so casually, so automatically, the way a boy of her own generation might have said, Oh yeah, or Keep going, which would have been embarrassing enough from a mother’s perspective, but not nearly so disturbing.

She probably shouldn’t have been surprised. Back when Brendan was in middle school, Eve had gone to a PTA presentation on Web-Savvy Parenting. The guest speaker, an assistant county prosecutor, had given them a depressing overview of the internet landscape and the perils it posed for teenagers. He touched on sexting and cyberbullying and online predators, but the thing that really bothered him was the insane amount of pornography that kids were potentially exposed to every day, a tsunami of filth unprecedented in human history.

This isn’t a copy of Playboy hidden in the closet, okay? This is an unregulated cesspool of degrading images and extreme sexual perversion available to everyone in the privacy of their own bedrooms, regardless of their age or emotional maturity. In this toxic environment, it will take constant, unwavering vigilance to keep your kids safe, to protect their innocence and guard them from depravity. Are you prepared to meet this challenge?

Eve and the other mothers she’d spoken to were shaken by the grim picture he’d painted, but they agreed afterward that it was a little overdone. The situation was bad—there was no use denying it—but it wasn’t all that bad, was it? And even if it was, there was no practical way to monitor your kids’ every mouse click. You just had to teach the right values—respect and kindness and compassion, pretty much do unto others, not that Eve was religious—and hope that it provided a shield against the harmful images and sexist stereotypes that they would inevitably be exposed to. And that was what Eve had done, to the best of her ability, though it obviously hadn’t worked out the way she’d hoped.

Suck it, bitch.

It was a little late in the day for a big sex talk, but Eve felt like she had no choice but to let Brendan know how disappointed she was. What he’d said to Becca was not okay, and Eve needed to make that clear, even if it ruined their last day together. She didn’t want him to begin college without understanding that there was a fundamental difference between sexual relationships in real life and the soulless encounters he presumably watched on the internet (he insisted that he stayed away from all that crap, but his browser history was always carefully scrubbed, which was one of the warning signs she’d learned about at the PTA meeting). At the very least, she needed to remind him that it was not okay to call your girlfriend a bitch, even if that was a word you used jokingly with your male friends, even if the girl in question claimed not to mind.

And even if she really is one, Eve thought, though she knew it wasn’t helpful to her cause.

Brendan must have sensed that a lecture was imminent, because he did his best to seal himself off in the van, tugging the bill of his baseball cap low over his sunglasses, nodding emphatically to the hip-hop throbbing through his sleek white headphones. As soon as they got on the Pike, he reclined his seat and announced that he was taking a nap.

I hope you don’t mind, he said, which was the first halfway polite thing to emerge from his mouth all day. I’m really tired.

You must be, she said, larding her voice with fake sympathy. You had a really busy morning. All that heavy lifting.

Ha ha. He propped his bare feet on the dashboard. Wake me when we get there, okay?

He slept—or pretended to sleep—for the next two hours, not even leaving the van when she stopped at a rest area outside of Sturbridge. Eve resented it at first—she really did want to talk to him about sexual etiquette and respect for women—but she had to admit that it was a relief to postpone the conversation, which would have required her to confess that she’d been eavesdropping outside of his door and to quote the phrase that had upset her so much. She wasn’t sure she’d be able to say it out loud, not without grave embarrassment, and she had a feeling that Brendan would laugh and tell her that she’d heard wrong, that he would never say, Suck it, bitch, not to Becca or anyone else, and they’d end up disputing the basic facts of the case rather than discussing the issues that really mattered. He could be a pretty slippery customer when he needed to be; it was another trait he’d inherited from his father, a fellow master of denial and evasion.

Just let him rest, she thought, inserting a Neil Young CD into the slot, mellow old songs that left her with a pleasant feeling of melancholy, perfect for the occasion. We can talk some other time.

Eve knew she was being a coward, abdicating her parental responsibility, but letting him off the hook was pretty much a reflex at this point. The divorce had left her with a permanently guilty conscience that made it almost impossible for her to stay mad at her son or hold him accountable for his actions. The poor kid had been the victim of an elaborate bait and switch perpetrated by his own parents, who, for eleven years, had built a life for him that felt solid and permanent and good, and then—just kidding!—had ripped it out of his hands and replaced it with an inferior substitute, a smaller, flimsier version in which love had an expiration date and nothing could be trusted. Was it any wonder that he didn’t always treat other people with the kindness and consideration they deserved?

Not that it was Eve’s fault. Ted was the guilty party, the selfish bastard who’d abandoned a perfectly good family to start over with a woman he’d met through the Casual Encounters section of Craigslist (he’d falsely claimed his marital status was Separated, a self-fulfilling prophecy if there ever was one). Eve had been blindsided by his betrayal and devastated by his refusal to get counseling or make even a token effort to save the marriage. He just pronounced it dead and buried, unilaterally declaring the past two decades of his life to be a regrettable mistake and vowing to do better on his next try.

I have a second chance, he’d told her, his voice quivering with emotion. Do you see how precious that is?

What about me? she’d replied. What about your son? Aren’t we precious, too?

I’m a jerk, he explained. You both deserve better.

The whole world acknowledged her status as an innocent victim—even Ted agreed!—but Eve still felt complicit in the breakup. The marriage had been floundering for a long time before Ted found his way to Craigslist, and she hadn’t done a thing to make it better, hadn’t even admitted there was a problem. Through her own passivity, she had enabled the disaster, letting her husband drift away and her family fall apart. She’d failed as a wife, and therefore as a mother, and Brendan was the one who’d paid the price.

The damage he’d suffered was subtle and hard to pinpoint. Other people marveled at what an impressive young man he was and how well he’d weathered the divorce. Eve was delighted by the praise—it meant everything to her—and she even believed it, up to a point. Her son did possess a number of good qualities. He was handsome and popular, a gifted athlete who never lacked for female attention. He’d done well in school, good enough to be admitted to Fordham and Connecticut College, though he’d ultimately settled on Berkshire State University, partly because it was more affordable, but mainly, as he cheerfully informed anyone who asked, because BSU was a party school and he liked to party. That was how he presented himself to the world—as a big, friendly, fun-loving bro, a dude you’d totally want on your team or in your frat—and the world seemed happy to take him at his word.

To Eve, though, he was still the bewildered boy who couldn’t understand why his father had left and why they couldn’t just make him come home. For the first couple of months after Ted moved out, Brendan had slept with a picture of his dad under his pillow, and more than once she’d found him wide awake in the middle of the night, talking to the photo with tears streaming down his face. He’d toughened up over time—his muscles turned wiry and his eyes got hard and the picture disappeared—but something had gone out of him in the process, all the boyish softness and vulnerability that had touched her so deeply. He just wasn’t as nice a person as he used to be—not nearly as sweet or as kind or as lovable—and she couldn’t forgive herself for letting that happen, for not knowing how to protect him, or how to fix what was broken.

  *  

They hit a traffic jam on the edge of campus, a festive convoy of incoming freshmen and their families. Inching toward the Longfellow Residential Area, they were cheered along the way by clusters of upperclassmen in matching red T-shirts who were apparently being paid to greet the newcomers. Some of them were dancing and others were holding up handmade signs that said, Welcome Home! and First Years Rock! However mercenary its origins, their enthusiasm was so infectious that Eve couldn’t help grinning and waving back.

What are you doing? Brendan muttered, still grumpy from his nap.

Just being friendly, she said. If that’s all right with you.

Whatever. He slumped lower in his seat. Knock yourself out.

Brendan had been assigned to Einstein Hall, one of the infamous high-rise dorms that made Longfellow look like a public housing project. Eve had heard alarming things about the party culture in this part of campus, but the vibe seemed reassuringly wholesome as they pulled into the unloading area and were swarmed by a crew of cheerful and efficient student movers. Within minutes, the movers had emptied the van, transferring all of Brendan’s possessions into a big orange bin on wheels. Eve stood by and watched, happy to be spared another round of sweaty labor. A scruffy kid whose T-shirt identified him as Crew Leader shut the hatch and gave her a businesslike nod.

Okay, Mom. We’ll take this fine young man up to his room now.

Great. Eve locked the van with the remote key. Let’s go.

The crew leader shook his head. Despite the ninety-degree heat, he was wearing a knitted winter cap with earflaps, the material so sweat-stiffened that the flaps curled out like Pippi Longstocking’s pigtails. Not you, Mom. You need to move your vehicle to the Visitors Lot.

This didn’t seem right to Eve. She’d seen lots of other mothers heading into the dorm with their kids. An Indian lady in a lime-green sari was accompanying her daughter at that very moment. But even as Eve began to point this out, she realized that the other mothers must have had husbands who were taking care of the parking. Everyone seemed to agree that this was the proper division of labor—the men parked the cars while the women stayed with their kids. Eve softened her voice, pleading for clemency.

I’ll just be a few minutes. I need to help him unpack.

That’s great, Mom. An edge of impatience had entered the crew leader’s voice. But first you have to move the vehicle. There’s a lot of people waiting.

I’m not your mom, Eve thought, smiling with excruciating politeness at the officious little shit. If she had been his mother, she would have advised him to lose the hat. Sweetie, she would have told him, you look like a moron. But she took a deep breath and tried to appeal to his humanity.

I’m a single parent, she explained. He’s my only child. This is a big deal for us.

By this point, Brendan had tuned in to the negotiation. He turned and glared at Eve.

Mom. His voice was clipped and tense. Go park the car. I’ll be fine.

Are you sure?

The crew leader patted her on the arm.

Don’t worry, he assured her. We’ll take good care of your baby.

  *  

The Visitors Lot was only a short drive away, but the walk back to Einstein took longer than she’d expected. By the time she made it up to Brendan’s room on the seventh floor, he was already in full-tilt male bonding mode with his new roommate, Zack, a broad-shouldered kid from Boxborough with a narrow, neatly trimmed beard that hugged his jawline like a chin strap, the same ill-advised facial hair that Brendan had sported for most of senior year. They were wearing identical outfits, too—flip-flops, baggy shorts, tank tops, angled baseball caps—though Zack had spiced up his ensemble with a puka shell necklace.

He seemed nice enough, but Eve had to work to conceal her disappointment. She’d hoped that Brendan would get a more exotic roommate, a black kid from inner-city Boston, or a visiting student from mainland China, or maybe a gay guy with a passion for musical theater, someone who would expand her son’s horizons and challenge him to move beyond his suburban comfort zone. Instead he’d gotten paired with a young man who could have been his long-lost brother, or at least a teammate on the Haddington High lacrosse team. When she arrived, the boys were admiring their matching mini-fridges.

We could dedicate one to beer, Zack suggested. The other could be for non-beer shit, lunch meat and whatever.

Totally, agreed Brendan. Milk for cereal.

Arizonas. Zack fingered his puka shells. Might be cool if we stacked one on top of the other. Then it would be like one medium-sized fridge with two compartments. Give us more floor space that way.

Sweet.

Eve went straight to work, putting sheets and blankets on Brendan’s bed and organizing his closet and dresser just the way they were at home, so he wouldn’t be disoriented. Neither boy paid much attention to her—they were strategizing about maybe lofting one of the beds and moving a desk underneath, freeing up enough space for a couch, which would make it easier to play video games—and she told herself that it was completely natural for a mother to be ignored in a situation like this. This was their room and their world; she was an outsider who would soon be on her way.

Where would we get a couch? Brendan wondered.

People just leave ’em out on the street, Zack explained. We can go out later and pick one up.

Is that sanitary? Eve asked. They could have bedbugs.

Mom. Brendan silenced her with a head shake. We’ll figure it out, okay?

Zack stroked his beard like a philosopher. We could cover it with a sheet, just to be on the safe side.

It was almost five thirty by the time Eve got everything unpacked. She saved the area rug for last, positioning it between the two beds so no one’s feet would be cold on winter mornings. It was a nice homey touch.

Not bad, she said, glancing around with satisfaction. Pretty civilized for a dorm room.

Brendan and Zack nodded in that subdued male way, as if they could barely rouse themselves to express agreement, let alone gratitude.

Who wants dinner? she asked. Pizza’s on me.

A quick, wary glance passed between the roommates.

You know what, Mom? A bunch of guys from the floor are going out in a little while. I’ll probably grab some food with them, okay?

Jesus, Eve thought, a sudden warmth flooding her face. That was quick.

Sure, she said. Go ahead. Enjoy yourselves.

Yeah, Brendan added. This way you won’t have to drive home in the dark.

All right, then. Eve scanned the room, searching fruitlessly for another task. Looks like that’s it.

No one contradicted her.

Okay. She smoothed Brendan’s bedspread one last time. She had a slightly dizzying sense of being overtaken by time, the future becoming the present before she was ready. Guess I better be going.

Brendan walked her to the elevators. It wasn’t an ideal place to say goodbye—too many kids milling around, including a crew of student movers pushing an empty bin—but there was nothing they could do about that.

Oh, by the way . . . Eve fumbled in her purse and found the cash she’d withdrawn that morning. She pressed the bills into Brendan’s hand, then gave him a fierce hug and a quick kiss. Just call me if you need anything, okay?

I’ll be fine.

She hugged him again when the elevator arrived. I love you.

Yeah, he muttered. Me too.

I’m going to miss you. A lot.

I know.

After that, there was nothing to do

Вы достигли конца предварительного просмотра. Зарегистрируйтесь, чтобы узнать больше!
Страница 1 из 1

Обзоры

Что люди думают о Mrs. Fletcher

3.7
41 оценки / 31 Обзоры
Ваше мнение?
Рейтинг: 0 из 5 звезд

Отзывы читателей

  • (5/5)
    It was a lot of fun. Engaging and very actual
  • (4/5)
    To Perrotta seems to examine in his fiction the topics other writers shy away from or sensationalize. Sex figures prominently among them, and in "Mrs. Fletcher" Perrotta examines the impacts of pornography and hook up culture on college and high school students, twenty-somethings and at least one middle-aged woman. The novel strikes me as a plausibly accurate but depressing look at contemporary sexual an relationship mores. Spoiler Alert: Perrotta's conclusions, some of them quite subtle, are grim.
  • (3/5)
    mildly amusing
  • (3/5)
    This was a fun read..... divorced mom about my age with a child heading off to college, she finds herself with a little too much time on her hands. She takes a class at the local community college, tries to branch out of her usual routine, etc. It was cute. I did appreciate that a lot of current issues and stereotypes were addressed, mostly regarding relationships and sexuality.
  • (5/5)
    This book made me laugh uncontrollably. Two takeaways: don't look at porn. And if you must look at porn, don't drink. Seriously, tho, there's an important message here about how porn has twisted the way young men view women.
  • (4/5)
    An entertaining read! Eve is divorced and her son just left for college. One night when Even is home alone, she gets a MILF text resulting in Eve's newest obsession - porn. The book explores parenthood, sexuality, identity, and the mistakes we sometimes make.
  • (3/5)
    4. Mrs. Fletcher (Audio) by Tom Perrottareaders: Carrie Coon, Finn Wittrock, Alexandra Allwine, JD Jackson, Nicky Maindiratta, Jen Richards, Sarah Steele, Arron Tveitpublished: 2017format: 8:30 overdrive audiobook (~236 pages, hardcover is 309 pages)acquired: library borrowlistened: Jan 5-15rating: 3In this playful variation on The Gradutate, when single-mom Eve Fletcher's son goes to college, named, of course, BSU, she adapts to being alone by getting addicted to online porn. This is the only novel I have listened to by Tom Perrotta, an author who has had some success with getting his novels made into movies. He can write humor with some sense of effortlessness to it and I imagine he has some flexibility in what he wants to write about. So, I'm assuming he chose, maybe even went out of his way, to write a book that builds up sexual tension, and seems for a time to be entirely about the sex. He has some build up with under-dressed characters in non-sexual situations. Like where a Eve happens to not be wearing a shirt when her ex-husband calls. Or in another scene where a two woman talk in a gym changing room, and hug in a non-sexual manner, but also not wearing any clothes. This is all gratuitous and points to where the book is going.The ending changes the overall impression a little. And there is something to be said for the two memorable characters he does create. Eve's adjustments to her empty nest and other adjustments later on are kind of moving, and she is always likable, even when Perrotta does some weird things with her. And Eve's son, Brendan, is a spoiled self-centered high school jock who pretty had the life he wanted in high school and doesn't adapt well to college. Yet Perrotta creates a curious character with Brendan, who actually has no idea how much he is upsetting the people around him and suddenly finds himself alone. I'm mixed on this novel. I see in reviews that sex isn't Perrotta's usual thing. And while I'm fine with it as part of novels, this felt designed such that the it was the purpose, cheapening everything else and making we wonder why I'm was listening...or maybe uncomfortable with my own interest. But the other stuff does have something to it. This could be viewed as how an otherwise decent author tries to generate some sales by writing about sex and internet porn. I didn't hate it, and I appreciated that he changes the impact with the ending. But I'm probably not going to read him again.
  • (4/5)
    Tom Perrotta's 'Mrs. Fletcher' is one of those books outside my usual sphere of interest that was so enjoyable I'm now interested in digging deeper into the author's catalog. Mrs. Fletcher is a pretty, divorced middle-aged woman who's son has left the nest for his freshman year in college. The kid's a screw-up: partier, video game player, non-studier, and a guy who disrespects women. While he's away at school, one of his 'friends' sends his mom an anonymous text message telling her, in effect, she's hot for age. That jump-starts a whole chain of sexual-awakening events for her, one of which was that she becomes addicted to MILF porn on the internet (if you don't know what that is, just Google it....). So, the remainder of the novel essentially involves Mrs. Fletcher's search for love, or at least some sex, from one or more members of the opposite, or the same, sex, her son's interactions with his college roommate and various female partners, and other characters involved in the chases. It's set in the present day, so there's a huge dose of gender issues, technology, irony, political correctness, and all the other stuff I'm glad I missed out on while on my way to old age. The writing and dialogue in Mrs. Fletcher are so well-done and realistic that you almost feel like you're overhearing a conversation as you're reading. It's my first exposure to this author and he's terrific. Mrs. Fletcher is terribly funny, a little dirty, open, and thoroughly fun to read.
  • (4/5)
    Eve Fletcher is a forty-something divorcee. When her son Brendan, finally leaves for college, she finds herself alone and adrift, looking for the next stage of her life to begin. In her loneliness, she becomes addicted to online porn, with a particular obsession with the MILF cult.The second main narrative, focuses on Brendan, a popular jock and party boy. He immediately begins to struggle, as he tries to assimilate into college life, finding himself no longer the golden boy of high school.I like Perrotta's writing. I appreciate his breezy and witty prose but sometimes, it can get tiresome, if the plot isn't substantial enough. For me the sex and angst-ridden characters begin to bog this one down, especially in the second half. If you haven't tried Perrotta, start with The Leftovers.
  • (4/5)
    Best described as a coming-of-middle-age novel Odd yet compelling.
  • (4/5)
    This is my first Tom Perrotta book. I am familiar with the movie adaptions of his "Election" and "Little Children" novels. The book touches on Eve Fletcher an empty nester divorcee whose son Brendan is just starting college. The book is told through both of their view points with some intrusion from some minor characters. The book touches on many issues regarding sexual awakening, PC correctness, aging, etc. etc. The book was entertaining and an easy read. The prose style was not too sophisticated. Not sure if 46 year old Eve was totally believable as portrayed in the book but she was an engaging character. The book did tie things up neatly at the end which was bit too much of a formula. It is a worthwhile read or you can wait until the HBO adaption comes out. Sometimes I think some writers who have had success with Hollywood tend to write their novels with that in mind. This tends to rob the book of some complexity. Again, a worthwhile read but not sure if I would read another book from the author.
  • (3/5)
    Mrs. Fletcher is Eve Fletcher, divorced mother of a college freshman. She's determined to get out there and become involved in life again, and she signs up for a class at the local community college on gender identity as a way of making friends. Along the way she discovers internet porn and becomes friends with a woman she works with. Meanwhile, her son has trouble adjusting to college, where he's no longer a big star and where he's stymied by both his college roommate and the challenge of starting a romantic relationship. Tom Perrotta's novel explores the sexual mores of contemporary Americans in much the same way works by Updike and Cheever did a generation ago. Touching on everything from how porn affects how a person approaches relationships, the difficulty of starting over after divorce, transgenderism and how different generations react differently to similar situations, Mrs. Fletcher is written with Perrotta's characteristic sensitivity and humor, although it does seem less focused than his other novels.
  • (5/5)
    If you only want to read novels with thrills and chills, this isn't the one for you; however, if you want to read one that beautifully portrays life's reality with it's poignant moments and longings, peppered with moments of dark humor, this should be your next read.46 year old Eve Fletcher is a recent empty-nester. She has returned to an empty home after dropping her teen-aged son, Brendan, off at his college dorm. Her husband left the two of them several years ago seeking "greener pastures." She attempts to feel the void in her life by spending long hours as a director of a senior center. However, her clients are no replacement for her quest to meet her need for intimacy. Recently, she vicariously searches for this intimacy by surfing internet porn sites.Eve's moment of crisis is mirrored by her son navigating life as he searches for a meaningful relationship, especially since he believes that he should break up with the girlfriend he left behind.The novel is told through alternating voices, mother and son, as both try to find stability in the midst of seemingly only, often humorous, misdirections.
  • (5/5)
    In Mrs. Fletcher, Eve and her college freshman son Brendan are both struggling with identity. Eve is a single mom, now all alone, and after she receives a sexually explicit text message from someone calling her a MILF, she Googles MILF and falls down a rabbit hole of pornography.She starts a habit of searching out MILF pornography almost every night, and the night class that she takes at the community college on Gender and Society is taught by Margot, a transgender woman who used to be Mark, a college basketball standout, so sex and identity is explored in this intriguing novel.What I found most interesting about Mrs. Fletcher is that Perrotta really seems to inhabit each of these characters- Eve, Amanda, Brendan, Amber, Margot, Julian. They are all distinct and feel like people you would meet in this town and college campus.He also nails the pervasive feeling of loneliness: of a mom whose only child is now gone to college, the jock who goes to college to party and finds that it is not what he expected, the young woman starting a career and looking for friendship, a young man who falls apart after he is bullied in high school.I have to say that the end of this book truly surprised me. I thought he may be going in one direction, and he went a different way (which I liked).Mrs. Fletcher is a fascinating look at a moment in time when gender and identity are being explored by so many in our culture. Social media and the easy availablity of the internet allows people to be exposed to people and ideas that we may never have been before, in the privacy of our own home. Perrotta places his story in everyday suburbia to emphasize that fact.I highly recommend Mrs. Fletcher; it's funny, poignant, thought-provoking and yes, even a little provocative, everything you want in a good novel.
  • (3/5)
    I hadn't read Tom Perotta before "Mrs. Fletcher"(MF), though I did see the movie version of "Little Children"(LC). I note that Perotta is popular on TV as well. A previous book was an HBO series, and apparently MF will also be an HBO series. It's been a few years since I saw LC and I only have two lasting impressions of it, the first being several nude scenes of the gorgeous Kate Winslett, and the second being a strong focus on unconventional behaviors (maybe the title's a hint?) throughout the story. While I'm quite sure that movie LC was rated R, I would rate book MF PG-13. And as for unconventional behaviors, I would have to say that MF dialed it up a notch - more on that later.Mrs Eve Fletcher is divorced, the mother of a college bound son, Brendan, who is spending his last minutes at home upstairs in his bedroom enjoying some oral sex with his 17 year old high school girlfriend. Eve happens to be standing on the other side of Brendan's closed door and is outraged - not at Becca's going away gift but at Brandon's sexist slurs during his moment of ecstasy, e.g., "slut". I had expected that the entire focus of the book would be on Mom, but from the beginning the chapters alternate somewhat between Eve's adventures and Brendan's. Brendan is immature, not really ready for college; he is better prepared for another year or two of high school. Brendan is not the guy you would want your daughter dating - but then again nobody dates anymore per Brendan's first but not quite college conquest. So let's focus on Eve.Eve manages a county Senior Citizen Center. And let me stop right there. Perotta is not very kind to the elderly. While Eve tries to excuse some behaviors of her clients, they are largely portrayed as cranky, gassy, incontinent, humorless, demented, sexist, closed-minded toilet blockers. Eve is not sure what she wants; she is missing companionship, sex. She is looking but not sure what she is looking for. She feels attraction to some new people in her life - the transgender woman who speaks at Eve's Center, an eighteen year old boy who was a classmate of her son - even an employee at the Center, Amanda, a young woman in her 20's. Where these encounters lead won't be revealed here. There are a number of chuckle-out-loud moments, and some racy scenes, but not graphic ones. It's a quick read, and has a happy/promising ending. I didn't discover any special insights worth sharing, but I must confess that given my senior status I regret never having the opportunity to attend a Feminist Alliance underwear party during my 1960's college days.
  • (5/5)
    Very funny. Hope there is a sequel.
  • (4/5)
    Tom Perrotta, in this novel and in his outstanding "Little Children", writes amusingly and poignantly about everyday people obsessed by dirty sex. Eve Fletcher, divorced, a supervisor at a senior home, sends off her immature jock son Brendan (who avoids moving his college luggage into the car by receiving a well-timed blow job from his ex-girlfriend) and falls into a world of online MILF porn viewing. In his first semester (at a very accurately portrayed yet un- named U Mass Amherst), Brendan runs afoul of a feminist who doesn't react well to his porn-based verbal commands and is publicly humiliated, flunks out, and slinks off back home. As usual in Perrotta-world, supporting characters take their strong, foible-filled turns in the narrative, including Eve's co-worker Amber; nineteen year old Julian, who was bullied in school by Brendan and is sexually haunted by Eve; Margo, a transvestite teacher who falls for one of her male students; and Brendan's father, who, having left Eve for a "second chance" at a new life, is the father of an autistic son with his new wife.And the set pieces, frat parties and a three-way and a lecture by Margo at Eve's assisted living facility, are hilarious. This is not his best effort, but every Perrotta book carries guaranteed pleasures: you will cringe, you will laugh aloud, you will empathize.
  • (5/5)
    A unique and fantastic plotline. It kept me completely enthralled all the way thru. You can join in the NovelStar writing contest happening right now till the end of May with a theme Werewolf. You can also publish your stories in NovelStar, just email our editors hardy@novelstar.top, joye@novelstar.top, or lena@novelstar.top.
    https://author.starlight.ink/essay/index.html
  • (3/5)
    3.5. Meandered some. The description of Mrs. Fletcher's porn viewing habits was spot on, though.
    There were some good insights around modern relating, sexual fluidity, sexual politics and women as objects. Easy read.
  • (4/5)
    An entertaining read, but everyone was just a little too mild mannered.
  • (4/5)
    Explored interesting issues but then took the easy way out
  • (3/5)
    Interesting dual narrative: newly divorced Eve Fletcher, facing second half of life as a single woman and her college bound son, Brendan, a popular athelete in high school but not certain how to navigate the new waters of college campus life. An attractive middle aged woman who finds herself getting "hooked" into surfing porn online and wondering about new relationships - Perrotta's tone, while unflinching, is still sympathetic to his characters' foibles and searching. Brendan reveals himself to be an insensitive, self centered guy who somehow still comes off as affable and a man with potential to grow. Hard to read his bits. Sex described in detail...
  • (2/5)
    I had high expectations for this book. This book was lacking a solid plot in my opinion. I felt like this story was based way too much on sex and not enough on character background and dialogue.
  • (2/5)
    I used to love Perrotta for how his books were a realistic slice of life, no clear beginning or end, just a glimpse. And this book still has that going for it… I did like that we just picked up, and didn’t necessarily get an ending. But it didn’t seem as realistic as he used to pull off. This seemed overly sexual, just for the fun of it. I know, I know - it’s a fiction book! The whole thing is for the fun of it. But for some reason, this just kind of rubbed me the wrong way. It seemed like he was trying to sex it up to get readers, because he knew it was a boring story otherwise. That being said, I read it quickly, and still really enjoyed his writing style. It just wasn’t the Perrotta I was looking forward to.
  • (2/5)
    Easy and uncomfortable read - but not in a good way. Nothing new here, just stereotypical characters in cliched situations. A dive into online porn was a way of addressing how this industry has become an addiction and is shaping people's vies of what sex is and what they should expect. A worthy subject poorly executed. The characters are not very interesting and some of the storylines seem to be stolen from the very same porn videos. Felt tawdry and tacky, missing Perrotta's usual sharp wit.
  • (4/5)
    Tom Perrotta's latest novel, Mrs Fletcher, details a year in the lives of Eve Fletcher and her son Brendan. Both embark in a new phase of life as he goes off to school and she, now empty nesting, enrolles in a local community college course on gender identity. Perrotta does a nice job of developing his characters and some current issues related to our times. How the internet has infiltrated our lives and our views of sex is a predominant and important theme. Eve Fletcher is an interesting and absorbing character, and Perrotta has an excellent eye for suburban details. Some good review lines:His characters tend to be drawn from the archetypes of suburbia, but he regards them with a gentle respect and affection. They walk and talk in the service of the novels’ thematic preoccupations but they are not the victims of derision or authorial assault. Like a fencer, Perrotta aims to probe his target, not draw bloodThis is no biblical fall, nor does it hew closely to “The Graduate,” to which the title seemingly alludes. Rather, it is as if Eve and Brendan (and readers as well) are given a glimpse of something both titillating and terrifying, as if we all awake, at the end, from the madness and tumult of a mid-semester night’s dream.NprIt had been a lot easier to be a loser back in the days before social media," Eve thinks, "when the world wasn't quite so adept at rubbing it in your face, showing you all the fun you were missing out on in real time.New Yorker The sinews of Perrotta’s fiction, rather, are the tensions within and between characters, tensions that he steadily and artfully amplifies until the reader becomes possessed by curiosity about how they’ll be resolved.
  • (4/5)
    This is my first book my Tom Perrotta, but I look forward to reading the rest of his books that have been sitting on my shelf for a long time. Mrs. Fletcher (Eve) is a forty-six year old divorcee who just dropped her son off for college and returns home to an empty nest. Eve is witty and funny and I loved her immediately. She is lonely and seeking ways to fill the void. She begins watching porn at night and that leads to a sexual awakening of sorts. “She wanted something else-something different-though what that something was remained to be seen. All she really knew was that it was a big world out there, and she’d only been scratching the surface.” She decides to take a class at the community college and quickly develops friendships with the others in her class. “The important thing was that she was here, trying something different, meeting new people, making her world bigger instead of hunkering down, disappearing into her own solitude.”The class she takes introduces us to a whole assortment of other troubled individuals. Margo is the instructor of the class. She is a transgender who is struggling with acceptance from the world and confidence within herself. “She didn’t really feel middle-aged. In her heart, she was a teenager, still learning the ins and outs of her new body. Still hoping for her share of love and happiness and fun, all those good things that the world sometimes provided.” “She was there to show the world what happiness and freedom looked like. You glowed with it. You did exactly what you wanted to. And whatever costume you wore, you were still yourself, unique and beautiful and unmistakable for anyone else.” “What she wouldn’t have given back then (as a teenager) to hear a trans adult tell her that she wasn’t alone, that happiness and wholeness were possible, that you could find a way to become the person you knew in your heart you truly were, despite all undeniable evidence to the contrary.”Meanwhile, Mrs. Fletcher’s son, Brendan is having a hard time at college. Eve says of Brendan: “He presented himself to the world- as a big, friendly, fun-loving bro- a dude you’d totally want on your team or in your frat.” Even though Brendan comes across this way, it becomes clear that he has a lot of built up issues, a lot of them to do with his father who left the family for another woman when Brendan was younger. Eve: “…something had gone out of him in the process (of divorce), all the boyish softness and vulnerability that had touched her so deeply. He just wasn’t as nice a person as he used to be- not nearly as sweet or as kind or as lovable- and she couldn’t forgive herself for letting that happen, for not knowing how to protect him, or how to fix what was broken.” “The divorce had left her with a permanently guilty conscience that made it almost impossible for her to stay mad at her son or hold him accountable for his actions.”Brendan begins to struggle with fitting in, finding friends, and keeping his grades up. “One thing you realize when you’re on your own is how happy the people who aren’t alone look.” His father comes for a visit during family day with his wife and Brendan’s autistic step-brother, Jon-Jon. He says of his step-brother, “the whole time he was screaming and thrashing around, I kept thinking how unfair it was the my father loved him so much and held him so tight- way tighter than he’d ever held me-and wouldn’t let go no matter what.” Brendan is jealous of his step-brother and desperate for his father’s love and attention. He has felt neglected by him his whole life.By the end of the book, most of the characters have managed to find some sort of happiness and understanding. I think this quote from the cover sums up the book perfectly: “a moving and funny examination of sexuality, identity, and the big clarifying mistakes people can make when they’re no longer sure who they are and where they belong.”“You feel what you fucking feel. You don’t have to apologize to anyone.”“You couldn’t turn away from the truth just because it ripped your guts out.”
  • (4/5)
    Mrs. Fletcher, a divorcée in her mid-forties, is experiencing empty nest syndrome. Her son Brendan is off to college expecting to have the time of his life. Parties, sex, drinks, drugs, as long as there's no actual work involved. In the meantime, Mrs. Fletcher needs to rediscover who she really is as an individual, as a single woman. Somebody who sends her a text one night thinks she's a MILF. As you would do, Mrs. Fletcher immediately does some internet research on this phenomenon, and in the process becomes obsessed with internet porn. This opens up completely new avenues to be explored. Enrolling in an evening course on gender and society at her local college, she meets an eclectic cast of fellow students led by a transgender professor. Meanwhile, Brendan finds college life isn't quite what he had hoped for. Brendan's perspective is written in the first-person while the rest is in third. For the majority of the book, he is a completely obnoxious douchebag, but there were brief moments when I felt a tiny bit of sympathy even for him.This was my first experience of reading anything by Tom Perrotta. Up to now, I had only been familiar with his work through watching the books that had been adapted as films.I really enjoyed this. The writing was simply brilliant and I really need to read the author's previous works. This held my interest throughout. In fact, the first 75%, I didn't want to put it down. It was witty, engaging, brave and provided a plethora of topics worthy of discussion and contemplation. However, due to its frankness of tackling some of these themes I think it will only appeal to a limited audience.Towards the end, I felt it ran out of steam and I would have been happier had the ending not been quite so neat and proper but a bit more courageous like the rest of the novel.I received an ARC via NetGalley.
  • (1/5)
    Mrs. Fletcher, Tom Perrotta, author; Carrie Coon, Finn Wittrock, Alexandra Allwine, JD Jackson, Nicky Maindiratta, Jen Richards, Sarah Steele, Aaron Tveit, narratorsThe book was interesting when it dealt with issues of autism, senior care, loneliness, PTSD, sexual identity and sexual abuse, but it didn’t develop these subjects, instead it just touched upon them as a way to introduce and dwell on irresponsible behavior, sexual deviance and lust. It presented a cast of miserable characters who never seemed to really suffer any consequences for their poor behavior. In fact, the only ones who paid for their errors in judgment were their victims, those upon whom they inflicted their selfishness. Although the sexual descriptions were not very graphic, they seemed to occupy most of the book. The language used by the author was crude. Both male and female characters seemed to think with a brain that was located somewhere between their waists and their thighs and nowhere near their heads. They were immature and irresponsible. They all served their own needs first and foremost barely thinking of the consequences of their foolishness.Eve Fletcher runs a senior citizen’s center. She is divorced and is an unhappy parent who has just dropped off her only child, Brendan, at college. Her advice to him boils down to, “have fun”. He is immature and spoiled and proceeds to do just that, drinking and smoking marijuana, until his grades suffer. He becomes involved with a young woman named Amber. Amber has a brother who is autistic. Brandon’s half brother is also autistic. They both attend a group, the Autism Awareness network. Amber is a free spirit. She is sexually active but berates herself for always going after the wrong kind of love object. She does not really recognize the error of her own ways and blames others when things do not go according to Hoyle. During a moment of sexual abandon, Brandon speaks very crudely to her, and she dumps him.Eve was a contradiction in terms. She told her son to treat women respectfully, but she didn’t expect to behave responsibly herself. Move over Mrs. Robinson. You have met your match with Eve. The empty nest looms wide before her. She enrolls in a community college and signs up for a class on gender in society and attempts to try to adjust to her new life of loneliness on the one hand, and freedom on the other. She too wants to “have fun”. She becomes addicted to porn sites on the internet and engages in sexual experimentation. Margo is the adjunct professor who is teaching Eve’s class. She is lonely. They become friends. She was once a man. Some students are confused about the idea of a transgender teacher. They have never known anyone like that before. There is a young man, Dumell in the class. He had served in Iraq and has PTSD. He and Margo become involved in a relationship.Amanda is a young woman who works for Eve as an event manager. She is also lonely. There are a lot of lonely people in this book. Amanda uses the internet to arrange one night stands for sex. Eve and Amanda become friends, and Eve discovers that she has feelings for women and wouldn’t mind some sort of experimental relationship. Amanda rebuffs her advances.Julian is a former high school classmate of Brendan’s. Brendan had once bullied him and the experience of being locked in an outhouse, however briefly, left him with PTSD. Eve is attracted to Julian, although he is a teenager. He seems attracted to her. He is also attracted to Amanda and Amanda is attracted to him. Eventually, Amanda, Eve and Julian engage in a ménage a trios. Eventually, Eve became involved with a man who also liked porn. He had a daughter who didn’t believe in gender. She was attracted to the person, not the sexual identity. Her boyfriend was an asexual. He had no sexual desires at all. Amber contacts Brendan to say she was at much at fault as he was when they were at school. She recognized her own complicity in what had happened between them. Brendan had left college and was learning a trade, plumbing, the trade of his mother’s new husband, but was thinking of returning to school. The book was turning into a fairy tale with all of the issues neatly resolved. I found the conclusion to be contrived as everyone’s life somehow turned out better than they expected. It didn’t feel authentic. I finished it out of respect for an author I admired. I would only recommend it to those interested in reading about people who are unhappy, dysfunctional and even morally repugnant at timesSumming it up, there was a transgender person, a possible lesbian, an asexual, and probably a homosexual and bisexual somewhere in the mix. There were a variety of emotional problems represented. There did not seem to be a shortage of characters with problems, just a shortage of those who had no sexual and emotional issues. In short, in this book, there was never an adult in the room.
  • (4/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    I feel like Stefon from SNL but this book has everything, coming of age, love, lust, relationship, sex, threesomes, porn, young people, middle aged people, old people, college, sports, food, oral sex, break ups, parties, transgenders, autism, parents, children, etc. Mrs. Fletcher is the new Mrs. Robinson. I feel like I am describing it poorly but I did really enjoy this book.

    1 person found this helpful