Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
Butler's narrator is a happy comic creation, a deadpan alien in love with his wife and her fine set of knockers: "There are three things about this planet which are too wonderful for me. Make that four things. The way of dreams in the mind; the way of tears in the eyes; the way of words in the mouth; and the way of my wife Edna Bradshaw when she acts like a cat and lovenibbles me into her arms." In a novel that eludes classification, Butler propels Desi's linguistic struggles, busload of disciples, and attempts to plumb the mystery of human yearning to a tight climax as he plans his first public appearance on Earth, which his new followers believe is a second coming. Mr. Spaceman is by turns a fond satire of science fiction, an ode to the South, and an exploration of marital dynamics that's as besotted with detail as any Anne Tyler novel--though the perspective tilts a little off-center. Edna gives her spaceman a fond pinch on the cheek, and he observes,
Her hand lunges forward and grabs a sizeable part of my cheek and squeezes and jiggles it. This physical attack is very distressing to me, especially given the sudden light-heartedness of her demeanor as she does it. This is a side to Edna that shocks me, and the violence goes on. I am bearing it the best I can and now Edna even says, "Oh you spaceman," in that cheery, loving voice that I have grown to recognize in spite of the neutrality of the words themselves. I am very confused and her attack on my cheek ceases and her hand drops and I think I may have missed something. I think she has meant this gesture as a friendly thing. After all, she does not have suckers on her fingers.Butler also frequently digresses into the narrative voices of the earthlings in their monologues about their lives. Alas, so appealing is Desi's narrative voice that these (admittedly often virtuoso) forays into other voices offer a degree of frustration. --Claire Dederer
This book was recommended to me, but I was never hooked and was continually waiting for what seemed like nothing.Published 18 months ago by Brad Shapiro
This is such a sweet book!! Great fun! A must to take you away for a while!! "oh you Spaceman!"Published on March 4, 2013 by Remy
This book is an interesting idea executed in a way that makes one yearn to be through with it. The entire first half is especially dragging. Read morePublished on May 7, 2008 by A. Bulman
I loved this book. Desi is as engaging a "character" as I've encountered in years. He's been studying us for 30 years and is preparing for a grand appearance on New... Read morePublished on July 20, 2004 by Jay
Endless ramblings/obvious allegory/weak conclusion. This is not a humour piece nor sci-fi and has little value as a fiction piece for entertainment. Read morePublished on February 26, 2004 by pmuehling
Robert Olen Butler is an excellent writer, so one can almost understand his desire, first with "Tabloid Dreams" and now with "Mr. Read morePublished on May 21, 2002 by Robert Carlberg
I bought Mr. Spaceman because of the novelty of the plot. It sounded quirky and fun and I hadn't read anything by the author despite the fact that I have seen his work in quite a... Read morePublished on October 2, 2001 by Chris MB
This came from a Pulitzer Prize winner? Another book that has a fine use of the 'f' word which apparently no one can write a book without these days. Read morePublished on June 1, 2001
I met Robert Olen Butler in Portland, Oregon after having read and been impressed with They Whisper. I picked Mr. Spaceman up hoping for more of the same. Read morePublished on August 10, 2000 by David Schweizer