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Men and Dogs Paperback – April 7, 2011
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From Publishers Weekly
Crouch's accomplished sophomore novel kicks off with a flashback: 20-odd years ago, Buzz Legare vanished while on a fishing trip. The fallout of his disappearance and presumed death appears in his 30-something children: Hannah drinks too much, her business is failing, and her husband has kicked her out after her repeated adultery. Hannah's gay brother, Palmer, refuses to let anyone get too close—he's ready to end his yearlong relationship when his partner brings up the idea of adopting a baby. After Hannah injures herself trying to break into her husband's apartment, she heads home to Charleston, S.C., to get her life back on track, but instead finds herself pursuing the past. Damaged and vulnerable, she zigzags through her past—an old boyfriend, questions about her parents' fidelity, and finally facing down where her unwillingness to accept love has gotten her. There's nothing unique about the premise—woman in crisis goes home and discovers herself by exhuming the past—but Crouch (Girls in Trucks) handles it deftly; her dialogue is snappy, the situations darkly funny, Hannah and Palmer are unlikable but sympathetic, and there's just enough mystery to keep the pages turning. (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Audible Audio Edition edition.
Following her embraced debut, Girls in Trucks (2008), Crouch offers another southern tale in which Hannah Legare finds herself back in her hometown, Charleston Harbor, South Carolina, as her marriage, business, and life in San Francisco crumble. She soon begins to puzzle over an old mystery: her father Buzz’s mysterious disappearance more than 20 years earlier. Hannah retraces old ground, hoping to glean insights from the recollections of her mother, stepfather, brother, and family friends. Yet most residents of the town prefer to remember Buzz fondly, and view his disappearance during a routine fishing expedition as a tragic accident. Hannah, however, is still haunted by her father’s absence and the thought of the family dog drifting alone in the boat. Her quest to discover her father’s true fate provides clues to Hannah’s current problems, including her trouble being faithful to her husband, even as she realizes she may find information she never wanted to know. At least she will finally begin to piece together her own story. --Katherine Boyle --This text refers to the Audible Audio Edition edition.
Top customer reviews
I am surprised at the good reviews the book got because it was I disagree.
On the good side, the book is written in a language that makes it a very easy read. I was done with the book in hours. The concept of the story was not bad. It follows the story of a woman who in trying to cope with the disappearance of her father years ago.
However, the end was a disappointment. The protagonist seemed like she was hell bent on destroying herself over the loss of her father, ignoring all the concern and love that her mother and very generous step-father showered on her. The second main character is the brother, who has his own issues with his gay lover. I thought both characters were selfish and I just could not relate to them.
Overall, its an Ok read but I have read much better. I have not read the Author's other books but I won't recommend this book to anyone.
I have to believe those one star reviews might be from other authors, or people who might know Katie and not like her, or simply, readers who don't appreciate books that are smart, funny, touching, and character driven.
I adore books about the south - southern families are so complex- and Hannah's family is about as complex as they come.
As an author myself, it almost pains me to read something so incredibly fluid; Kate has a way of flirting with both her words and the reader that makes it impossible to end a chapter without turning the page to find out what happens next.
This is about acceptance/family/forgiveness/and moving on. And quite simply, it's brilliant.
Most recent customer reviews
What unlikeable characters. I have never found protagonists (I cannot see Hannah as a "pro-" anything, she is just too negative and nasty) I...Read more