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I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You [Kindle Edition]

Courtney Maum
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (294 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $16.00
Kindle Price: $11.99
You Save: $4.01 (25%)
Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
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Kindle Edition $11.99  
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Book Description

In this reverse love story set in Paris and London, which Glamour hailed as one of the “10 Best Books to Add to Your Summer Reading List Right This Second,” a failed monogamist attempts to woo his wife back and to answer the question: Is it really possible to fall back in love with your spouse?

Despite the success of his first solo show in Paris and the support of his brilliant French wife and young daughter, thirty-four-year-old British artist Richard Haddon is too busy mourning the loss of his American mistress to a famous cutlery designer to appreciate his fortune.

But after Richard discovers that a painting he originally made for his wife, Anne—when they were first married and deeply in love—has sold, it shocks him back to reality and he resolves to reinvest wholeheartedly in his family life…just in time for his wife to learn the extent of his affair. Rudderless and remorseful, Richard embarks on a series of misguided attempts to win Anne back while focusing his creative energy on a provocative art piece to prove that he’s still the man she once loved.

Skillfully balancing biting wit with a deep emotional undercurrent, this “charming and engrossing portrait of one man’s midlife mess” (Elle) creates the perfect portrait of an imperfect family—and a heartfelt exploration of marriage, love, and fidelity.

Editorial Reviews Review

An Amazon Best Book of the Month, June 2014: One way to read Courtney Maum’s funny, smart, frothy first novel is as a primer on why cheating on your spouse is a terrible idea--especially when your wife is beautiful, and French, and a lawyer, and the mother of your child, and she loves you. Another take: monogamy is hard and, as the protagonist puts it, sometimes we need a “secret line to something private.” Or maybe that’s just a lame excuse for self-indulgence. Richard Haddon is a British artist living the perfect ex-pat’s life with his wife, Anne, and daughter in Paris. When his mistress dumps him, and Anne learns of the affair, he struggles not only to win her back, but to revive his passion for fidelity. Richard can be a maddening doofus, and whether you root for him or not may depend on your taste for rom-com sweetness. (There’s a written-for-the-screen quality at work here; I’ve already mentally cast Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy.) What lifts the novel above the love lost and found tale is Maum’s well-drawn cast of quirky supporting characters and her exploration of the creative process, primarily Richard’s attempt to rediscover himself as an artist. Is it better to create safe, commercial art and take care of your family or take a risk on art that matters? And is a U.S. passport in a washing machine full of oil a brilliant anti-war protest or just weird? At the core of this clever debut is a bigger question: how do you recover from infidelity and become a better man? --Neal Thompson

From Booklist

Richard, a British artist living in Paris, betrays his avant-garde ideals with a mainstream gallery show of sentimental oil paintings, which are a hit with consumers. He also sells out his marriage by having a “seven year itch” love affair. Maum’s debut novel charts the aftermath of these two troubling events, with Richard trying to recover his meaningful relationships with both his true art and his French wife. A painting of their daughter’s toy bear is central to the story, and its journey serves as a mirror to that of the couple’s. With Paris and the looming Iraq war as its backdrop, Maum’s tale deftly captures a thirtysomething’s sense of grief for the lost passion of youth and the search for something of depth to take its place. Writing with an authentic and affecting vulnerability, Maum considers sentimentality from every possible angle—interpersonal relationships, lofty idealism, and art—and each receives an equally unflinching examination. An unapologetically thoughtful novel told without melodrama and with a lot of heart. --Kate Soto

Product Details

  • File Size: 2000 KB
  • Print Length: 353 pages
  • Publisher: Touchstone (June 10, 2014)
  • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #16,707 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
45 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious- perfect smart summer read June 10, 2014
I LOVED this book. Richard Haddon is a hilarious, imperfect, protagonist that you both want to sleep with (yep, I said it) and kick in the ass. And with that you will perfectly understand his wife Anne-Laure-- a classic beauty, a high powered French lawyer who you want to go perfume shopping with and have her teach you how to finally understand how to tie a scarf.

If you enjoyed Where'd You Go, Bernadette?, Beautiful Ruins, any Jonathan Tropper books, The Family Fang, this book is perfect for you. Like with all those books, men and women alike will like this in equal measure, and I think you'll be sure to find it laugh-out-loud funny, and ultimately a very moving story about just how hard--and rewarding--marriage and love is.

Highly recommend!
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91 of 108 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Our Two Cents June 18, 2014
My MIL bought this book to read on the plane, when she got here she gave it to me to read and asked me to tell her what I thought. We didn't talk about it until I was done, but I will tell you both of our perspectives on it. First-she's French. She's lived in America part-time for twenty years, but she's still thoroughly French. She was very bothered by the take on French women. VERY. She said that it was obvious that it was written by someone who thought they understood French women but really had no idea. As someone who has studied the French for work (and lives with a French husband) I would agree with her. The description of Paris is good, we both agreed on that. A little too perfect, but that's to be expected from someone who doesn't live there day-in and day-out. But then there's Richard. We both hated him. My MIL said that there was no way in hell that any French woman that she knew would have married such a whining, big baby as him (my words, not hers). For me he had no redeeming qualities at all. Even when he started to change I couldn't stand him. It's not a terrible book, but it's not a favorite for me or for her.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Location Location Location June 10, 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book was so engaging! As the story unfolded I found myself transported alongside Richard to and from Paris, Providence, Brittany and the London suburbs (which locations effectively serve as characters in and of themselves). With clever (and funny!) observations and rich detail, Maum makes sure you understand the look, feel and culture of each of these places and gets you thinking about how they impact the characters and their choices... you can't help but reflect on your own journey and the places that have shaped you... a must-read for anyone who sees romance in travel!
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars No fun here June 30, 2014
Hysterical? Not even a smile. The cover is a rip off of Jonathan Tropper's This is Where I Leave You, which is laugh out loud funny and clever and everything this book isn't. Unsympathetic characters who make internal changes without any motivation. A waste of time.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Richard Haddon a British artist lives with his French wife Anne-Lure and his daughter Camille in Paris in 2002. He has just been dumped by his mistress of seven months and is feeling sorry for himself, when his wife discovers his infidelity. Anne-Lure kicks him out. In the proverbial dog-house Richard decides he must win her back and stir up his complacent art career. The novel follows his attempts at both providing an entertaining send-up of the contemporary art world. It is touching and funny but at the same time I was always aware that this is a woman writing from a man's point of view. Something just does not ring true in the portrayal of Richard. Too much concentration on his part on what people are wearing, brands etc. It is all quite predictable and I could have done without the political diatribes.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Richard Haddon is a British artist living in Paris with his French wife, Anne, and their daughter, Camille. He is having his first solo show in the City of Lights. The good news is that his artwork is selling. The only problem is that it's art he's ashamed of, having concocted it solely for the purpose of selling it. The one piece that means anything to him is the first painting in the series, The Blue Bear, which he created for Anne when she was pregnant. That painting is emotionally significant in their marriage, or at least it once was so. When Richard's gallerist requested he include The Blue Bear in the show, Anne didn't seem to care one way or another.

Anne's attitude toward the once-important painting doesn't truly surprise Richard. While they were once crazily in love, they have drifted farther and farther apart, until they are more like roommates than romantic partners. This state of impersonal coexistence was in place even before Richard began his seven-month-long affair with Lisa, an American he met in an art gallery. Lisa writes letters to Richard from London these days, sending them to his gallerist, Julien. The letters are difficult for him to read, or to even understand her reasoning for penning them. After all, she broke up with him, matter-of-factly informing him that she planned to marry a London cutlery designer named David. Now Richard doesn't know how to feel about Lisa. He yearns for her but also almost hates her, partly because she is the one who ended their relationship, even as she demanded he finish whatever has seemingly dulled his soul.

When Richard arrives at Julien's gallery to pick up Lisa's latest letter, Julien has news. The Blue Bear has sold, for quite a big chunk of cash. Richard had been positive that no one would want it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Relatable
Easy to read, true representation of different stages of marriage. Long-term relationships take work, both parties need to make adjustments over time. True test of love.
Published 13 hours ago by mge
4.0 out of 5 stars I found it to be a lighthearted amusing tale of ...
I found it to be a lighthearted amusing tale of 3 women setting off on their own to do
something meaningful in their lives, such as leaving cheating husbands behind.
Published 1 day ago by Fran
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
Published 3 days ago by LAURA HACHADOURIAN
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Love, art and the art of redemption...A fun read that picked-up nicely towards the end.
Published 3 days ago by Michelle Lane
5.0 out of 5 stars More Paris Books please!
I am so in love with Paris. I've only been there once for a week many years ago. I want to live there. It's my dream. Read more
Published 4 days ago by Lori Lesko
4.0 out of 5 stars An enjoyable and fun read!
A well-written and fun story. The book involves serious situations in life but doesn't take itself too seriously. The title sets the tone. I highly recommend this book.
Published 7 days ago by DenverTom
4.0 out of 5 stars Realistic Portrayal
Well written but I am not a fan of the theme. I guess it was too realistic for me. When I read, I like to escape, and the portrayal of a struggling marriage hit too close to... Read more
Published 8 days ago by Retired English Teacher
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
An enjoyable and easy read.
Published 8 days ago by Liz Greene
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommend!
Profound and real look into a marriage through its trials and tribulations. Great read that can be a sad topic but was uplifting.
Published 9 days ago by Clee
3.0 out of 5 stars but too sad.
Well expressed, but too sad.
Published 10 days ago by Carol A. McMillen
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More About the Author

Courtney Maum is the author of the novel, I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You, out in June 2014 from Touchstone Books. The humor columnist behind the "Celebrity Book Review" series on Electric Literature, a frequent contributor to The Rumpus, and an advice columnist for Tin House, she splits her time between the Massachusetts Berkshires and New York City. She's also the author of the chapbook "Notes from Mexico" from The Cupboard Press. Read more of her work at or find her on Twitter @cmaum. Official website:

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