Wednesday, August 2, 2017

BOOK: Mrs. Fletcher by Tom Perrotta

Mrs. Fletcher by Tom Perrotta, 308 pages

review copy from Simon&Schuster Canada

Perrotta, author of Little Children and The Leftovers, is becoming one of my reliable authors and moving into MRE (must read everything) territory. One of the things I like is that each of his books are so very different although all so far have been very readable.

Mrs Fletcher has many characters with decent backstories, very contemporary with autistic and trans characters, millennials and divorced parents discovering porn on the internet but the plot overall is minimal. Eve, divorced mom, takes her jock son, Brendan, to college, and needs to find ways to deal with having an empty nest. She takes an evening college course on Gender Studies and hopes to make some new friends, while Brendan has the adjustment of going from a big fish in a little pond to a little fish in a big pond. The narration changes between the two - third person from Eve's point of view but first person from Brendan's. I liked this choice, as it lets the reader be able to have some tiny bit of sympathy for Brendan which would not be possible without his inner thoughts. His actions are terribly immature in nearly all cases.

There are a number of things that shouldn't make this a good read, but I really enjoyed it! The characters don't grow or change very much, especially the son. Not much really happens over the course of the year that the book takes place. Many characters make bad decisions, especially with their sexual partners, but I kept hoping they might improve. There was a happy ending that was pretty obvious. And yet, I flew through this fast and fun book and liked how all the characters tied together.

I think the title is wrong; it's okay, as Eve is the main character, but there are so many other things going on. The title may be a play on Mrs Robinson from the movie which almost works. It needs more of a chick lit title like The MILF and the Empty Nest