MONEY MAN

An entertaining and suspenseful dark comedy about a desperate suburban family man.

Awards & Accolades

Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT

In this novel, a financial planner on the brink of a breakdown needs to make a drastic life change.

Tom Frye has reached his breaking point. His financial planning clients range from zany to dangerous, and each night, Tom returns home to his wife and two teenage daughters exhausted from the drama and turning to the bottle for refuge. Vicky, Tom’s wife, gives him an ultimatum: Take some time off, or get a new job. His life as he knows it is imploding, and in a moment near collapse, he decides to visit his favorite spot for clarity: “He wished for the days when he had felt fearless and brave and courageous. Not like the frustrated, sulking defensive man he had become. He realized then what he needed to do. Tomorrow. Yes, tomorrow he needed to go to the river.” Thus begins a series of strange, episodic adventures of a man on the edge that involve more than one sudden death. Bush’s comical yet sympathetic narration crafts an amusing story. Each scene with Tom’s clients is witty and entertaining as the protagonist subdues his ego and ends up in a range of unusual scenarios that range from him getting his newly purchased Italian leather shoes covered in mud to being forced to stare into the eyes of a “scary Dominatrix”—who’s actually a powerhouse lawyer. Over the course of the book, the protagonist’s eccentric clients, who include a mysterious and ungrateful furniture executive and a funeral director, progressively become the stuff of nightmares. Bush paints Tom as an affable but defeated antihero who’s a realist to a fault: “I know the family doctor thinks I need therapy, but Jesus, who has time for therapy?” He’s always longing for something different—and, as if in answer, the author keeps making things more complicated for him.

An entertaining and suspenseful dark comedy about a desperate suburban family man.

Pub Date: Jan. 25, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-945670-71-8

Page Count: 174

Publisher: Year of the Book Press

Review Posted Online: March 26, 2020

Awards & Accolades

Likes

  • Readers Vote
  • 19


Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT


  • New York Times Bestseller

THE WOMEN

A dramatic, vividly detailed reconstruction of a little-known aspect of the Vietnam War.

Awards & Accolades

Likes

  • Readers Vote
  • 19


Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT


  • New York Times Bestseller

A young woman’s experience as a nurse in Vietnam casts a deep shadow over her life.

When we learn that the farewell party in the opening scene is for Frances “Frankie” McGrath’s older brother—“a golden boy, a wild child who could make the hardest heart soften”—who is leaving to serve in Vietnam in 1966, we feel pretty certain that poor Finley McGrath is marked for death. Still, it’s a surprise when the fateful doorbell rings less than 20 pages later. His death inspires his sister to enlist as an Army nurse, and this turn of events is just the beginning of a roller coaster of a plot that’s impressive and engrossing if at times a bit formulaic. Hannah renders the experiences of the young women who served in Vietnam in all-encompassing detail. The first half of the book, set in gore-drenched hospital wards, mildewed dorm rooms, and boozy officers’ clubs, is an exciting read, tracking the transformation of virginal, uptight Frankie into a crack surgical nurse and woman of the world. Her tensely platonic romance with a married surgeon ends when his broken, unbreathing body is airlifted out by helicopter; she throws her pent-up passion into a wild affair with a soldier who happens to be her dead brother’s best friend. In the second part of the book, after the war, Frankie seems to experience every possible bad break. A drawback of the story is that none of the secondary characters in her life are fully three-dimensional: Her dismissive, chauvinistic father and tight-lipped, pill-popping mother, her fellow nurses, and her various love interests are more plot devices than people. You’ll wish you could have gone to Vegas and placed a bet on the ending—while it’s against all the odds, you’ll see it coming from a mile away.

A dramatic, vividly detailed reconstruction of a little-known aspect of the Vietnam War.

Pub Date: Feb. 6, 2024

ISBN: 9781250178633

Page Count: 480

Publisher: St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: Nov. 4, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2023

Awards & Accolades

Likes

  • Readers Vote
  • 122


Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT


  • New York Times Bestseller

IT STARTS WITH US

Through palpable tension balanced with glimmers of hope, Hoover beautifully captures the heartbreak and joy of starting over.

Awards & Accolades

Likes

  • Readers Vote
  • 122


Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT


  • New York Times Bestseller

The sequel to It Ends With Us (2016) shows the aftermath of domestic violence through the eyes of a single mother.

Lily Bloom is still running a flower shop; her abusive ex-husband, Ryle Kincaid, is still a surgeon. But now they’re co-parenting a daughter, Emerson, who's almost a year old. Lily won’t send Emerson to her father’s house overnight until she’s old enough to talk—“So she can tell me if something happens”—but she doesn’t want to fight for full custody lest it become an expensive legal drama or, worse, a physical fight. When Lily runs into Atlas Corrigan, a childhood friend who also came from an abusive family, she hopes their friendship can blossom into love. (For new readers, their history unfolds in heartfelt diary entries that Lily addresses to Finding Nemo star Ellen DeGeneres as she considers how Atlas was a calming presence during her turbulent childhood.) Atlas, who is single and running a restaurant, feels the same way. But even though she’s divorced, Lily isn’t exactly free. Behind Ryle’s veneer of civility are his jealousy and resentment. Lily has to plan her dates carefully to avoid a confrontation. Meanwhile, Atlas’ mother returns with shocking news. In between, Lily and Atlas steal away for romantic moments that are even sweeter for their authenticity as Lily struggles with child care, breastfeeding, and running a business while trying to find time for herself.

Through palpable tension balanced with glimmers of hope, Hoover beautifully captures the heartbreak and joy of starting over.

Pub Date: Oct. 18, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-668-00122-6

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Atria

Review Posted Online: July 26, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2022

Close Quickview