By Taffy Brodesser-Akner
Published by Random House Publishing Group
on June 18, 2019
Recently separated Toby Fleishman is suddenly, somehow--and at age forty-one, short as ever--surrounded by women who want him: women who are self-actualized, women who are smart and interesting, women who don't mind his height, women who are eager to take him for a test drive with just the swipe of an app. Toby doesn't mind being used in this way; it's a welcome change from the thirteen years he spent as a married man, the thirteen years of emotional neglect and contempt he's just endured. Anthropologically speaking, it's like nothing he ever experienced before, particularly back in the 1990s, when he first began dating and became used to swimming in the murky waters of rejection.
But Toby's new life--liver specialist by day, kids every other weekend, rabid somewhat anonymous sex at night--is interrupted when his ex-wife suddenly disappears. Either on a vision quest or a nervous breakdown, Toby doesn't know--she won't answer his texts or calls.
Is Toby's ex just angry, like always? Is she punishing him, yet again, for not being the bread winner she was? As he desperately searches for her while juggling his job and parenting their two unraveling children, Toby is forced to reckon with the real reasons his marriage fell apart, and to ask if the story he has been telling himself all this time is true.
I’ve read some of author Taffy Brodesser-Akner’s interviews, and I heard so much buzz about this novel leading up to its publication date, so I was definitely looking forward to getting my hands on a copy!
I just loved this book. It was at times frustrating and infuriating, searing and sharp, and in the end it really moved me. The writing was fantastic, and the structure sort of took my breath away in the end. And its insights into marriage and families and relationships and growing up and being a woman in the world had me nodding my head in agreement, understanding, recognition.
Fleishman Is In Trouble is just as good as I’d heard it was, and will definitely make my list of favourite books read in 2019. If you haven’t already heard the buzz about it, you soon will. Highly recommended.