Featured Post

Happy 6th Birthday, SPR!

As of my "maternity leave," here are the stats of the past year: 74 books reviewed 9 guest posts 4 independent bookstores 3 d...

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

The Best of Youth: A Novel

A huge thank you to Jason, who read this book and thought of me. Good work, dude! This is Michael Dahlie's The Best of Youth.

Henry was in college when he received word that his parents had passed left him $15 million. What is a young man to do with that much money other than move to Brooklyn and fund a literary magazine? An aspiring writer, Henry is a little out of touch with societal niceties and dealing with other people. One might say he is socially awkward. He falls in love with his fourth cousin, funds the magazine, watches the farm of a Wall Street socialite only to cause unmitigated disaster -- and all before he finds success as a novelist, although in ghostwriting terms. 

This story was everything that I love about Jonathan Ames and P.G. Wodehouse and then stirs in some earnestness to the point where it is almost impossible for anyone with a heart to not fall in love with Henry. There were points of absurdity and laughter, but there were even more times that I was rooting for him. Where do I even begin with this story?

The goat incident was just the beginning. You saw it coming, but you were powerless to stop it. Henry just has this desire to do what's right all the time, and he often gets in his own way. I wanted to throttle Abby for leaving him at the farm by himself, but the goat incident was just too enjoyable not to have happen in whole. The literary magazine debacle? Amazing and so raw for anyone who has ever felt rejected by people who are "cooler" than them. (I am not projecting here or anything.) His literary masterpiece that ended up belonging to one of the biggest assholes to ever walk the face of the planet -- well, I wonder if that could have been prevented. I wanted to enter the book and scream at Henry to write something else. Keep the good stuff for yourself. Don't give away your masterpiece. But alas -- some people don't listen.

All in all, I loved this book, and I'm so thankful to you, Jason, for sending it my way! I love smart humor inserted with a twinge of love, and this was that. Henry was just beyond lovable in his own buffoonish, awkward way. Where can I find a Henry of my own?

For purchase below. 

No comments:

Post a Comment