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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

A surprising, exquisite novel. Don‘t be put off by the fact that this story is told by a love-struck ghost. This is a rich and beautifully written novel which explores big themes with a deft touch. George Sand and Chopin leap off the page, two tornadoes of creative endeavor. Wonderfully unusual. I loved it.

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AlexGeorge
After She Wrote Him | Sulari Gentill
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Pickpick

Not often you can say of any book - but especially a mystery - that it is utterly original, but, well, this really is. Who is the author and who is the subject? It‘s delightful and perplexing and all very meta - but splendid entertainment.

11 likes1 stack add
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AlexGeorge
Case Study | Graeme Macrae Burnet
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Pickpick

Twisty, engaging, devilishly clever. Macrae Barnet‘s Booker Prize longlisted novel of psychotherapy misadventures is a glittering marvel of smoke and mirrors. A delicious and unexpected metamorphosis materializes as the unorthodox plot unfolds, prompting both characters and reader to wonder what is real, and what is not. Highly recommended. Coming November 1.

12 likes1 stack add
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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

A complete delight, from start to finish. These essays are smartly conceived, brilliantly written, and always engaging and surprising. There‘s real beauty in their honesty and vulnerability. Oh, and they‘re funny as hell. I will be handselling this to the moon and back.

16 likes1 stack add
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AlexGeorge
Remarkably Bright Creatures | Shelby Van Pelt
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Pickpick

Touching and very enjoyable story which we‘re discussing at this month‘s Skylarking Book Club. The author nicely gave a real sense of place (the Pacific Northwest) and the octopus shenanigans were great fun. An excellent summer read.

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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

A beautiful, strange, compelling book about childhood dreams, obsession, and friendship. Quite unlike anything else I‘ve read. It gripped me completely. Highly recommended- coming in September.

bookishdawg Beautiful cover! 4mo
18 likes2 stack adds2 comments
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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

If you‘ve ever read Candice Millard, you‘ll already know she‘s an extraordinary storyteller. With this tale of old-fashioned bravery and derring-do, she has a story worthy of her talents. This book has it all - excitement, tension, and a betrayal so deliciously terrible that it took my breath away. Magnificent. I‘ll be interviewing the author at Skylark Bookshop in Columbia, MO on June 2. Come along if you can!

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AlexGeorge
Delphi | Clare Pollard
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Pickpick

The pandemic novel I didn‘t know I was waiting for. Clare Pollard‘s book is extremely smart and also very funny, but touches a deep vein on uncertain despair that most will recognize from the early days of COVID. Thought-provoking and rather brilliant. Added bonus (for me): it‘s terribly English and made me quite homesick. Highly recommended. Coming this August.

14 likes3 stack adds
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AlexGeorge
Cairo Circles | Doma Mahmoud
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Pickpick

An epic page-turner with multiple shifts in both time and space, this extraordinary debut novel paints a memorable picture of the lives of young Egyptians in Cairo. It‘s a beautifully written book, addressing complex relationships dominated by faith, tradition, social class, and the boundaries of personal freedom. Doma Mahmoud is a bold and inventive new voice in fiction. Highly recommended.

18 likes1 stack add
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AlexGeorge
NSFW: A Novel | Isabel Kaplan
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Pickpick

Wasn‘t quite sure what to expect when I picked this up, but this was an absolute treat. Kaplan‘s debut is sharply written, funny, and her take on #MeToo issues is nuanced and thoughtful. The narrator‘s mother is splendidly awful. Watch out for it in July.

13 likes2 stack adds
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AlexGeorge
The Fortune Men | Nadifa Mohamed
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Pickpick

Harrowing, enraging, brilliant. This fictional rendering of the true story of Mahmoud Mattan, a Somali wrongfully hanged for a murder he did not commit, is not an easy read, but it‘s rewards are many.

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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

Absolutely required reading. I‘ve read a ton of books about 2020 and the election and this one provided fresh and illuminating insight into much of the details - and made it clear how close this country came to disaster. Raskin writes with eloquent fury, and his memories and meditations about his beloved son Tommy, who took his own life a week before the insurrection, are beautiful and deeply moving. Highly, highly recommended.

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AlexGeorge
Trust | Hernan Diaz
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Pickpick

Beautifully done. Engrossing tale of the capitalist excesses of the early twentieth century, but refracted through a complex set of different narrative lenses which keeps you hooked to the last page. Profoundly resonant into these days of the mega-wealthy. If you have limitless resources, can you really bend reality to your will? Highly recommended. Coming in May.

LeslieO Stacking it! 8mo
21 likes1 stack add1 comment
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AlexGeorge
Hamnet | Maggie O'Farrell
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Pickpick

A quiet, beautiful, devastating book. I love Maggie O‘Farrell‘s work and this novel was exquisitely done. Highly recommended!

28 likes2 stack adds
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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

Clare Vaye Watkins can really, really, really write. I loved this spiky, funny, heartbreaking, wholly original novel about a mother fleeing from her marriage (and her baby) and confronting - or trying to confront - the ghosts of her past. Rarely have I delighted so much in the language of a book. The words will take your breath away. (Added bonus: Best. Title. Ever.) Highly recommended - coming in October.

candority What a great title and cover! 👏🌵 1y
19 likes3 stack adds1 comment
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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

This is the Sally Rooney novel I‘ve been waiting for. Rooney‘s characters are beautifully drawn, their interactions never dull and each carefully rendered to tease out unexpected richness and complexities. Her writing is poised and dry, flashily unflashy. Throw in some gut-wrenchingly accurate emotional truths and you have yourself an excellent book.

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AlexGeorge
Slow Fire Burning | Paula Hawkins
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Pickpick

Paula Hawkins doing what she does best - an irresistible page-turner, full of tension and twists. If you liked THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN, you‘ll love this. Added bonus: it‘s set in my old neighborhood in London. Coming in August.

14 likes1 stack add
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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

Jenna Blum‘s beautifully written debut memoir about her lovely old dog, Woodrow, did everything I want from a book: it made me think, it made me laugh, and it made me feel (oh, how it made me feel!) I read it in one sitting, and mostly in tears. Woodrow on the Bench is wonderfully generous and big-hearted, and while the inevitable denouement is devastating, it is also inspiring and uplifting, too. Highly recommended!! Coming in October.

11 likes1 stack add
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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

So, I loved this book. It is funny, brave, acerbic in all the best ways, and made me (it felt, anyway) a smarter person by the end of it. For the assured voice and deft and insightful characterization it reminded me of THE MOST FUN WE EVER HAD by Claire Lombardo, and you won‘t get much higher praise for me. One of the best novels I‘ve read this year.

Alfoster Yes! I loved both these books too!❤️👏 1y
25 likes1 stack add1 comment
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AlexGeorge
Thick: And Other Essays | Tressie McMillan Cottom
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Pickpick

Not sure how I missed this gem when it came out in 2019, but I‘ve just ordered a bunch for Skylark Bookshop as it blew my mind and I want to talk to people about it. It‘s incredibly smart, funny, brave, provocative and made me rethink, oh, pretty much everything. I underlined a *ton*. Absolutely required reading.

Hooked_on_books Wonderful, wonderful book. I have mad respect for Dr Cottom. 1y
19 likes1 stack add1 comment
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AlexGeorge
Unsettled Ground | Claire Fuller
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Pickpick

Stunning. Not an easy book to read for sure - there is poverty, injustice upon injustice, cruelty that takes your breath away. But Claire Fuller has created characters with extraordinary resilience, and hope, and strength, and therein lies this book‘s glory. And the writing is drop-dead gorgeous. The fact that it‘s set in Wiltshire, where I grew up, didn‘t hurt, either. Fabulous.

TheNerdyProfessor I just finished this one last week. It's one of the best I've read all year. 1y
19 likes1 comment
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AlexGeorge
Mrs March | Virginia Feito
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Pickpick

Unsettling, in a can‘t-tear-your-eyes-away kind of way. This portrait of a woman unraveling before your eyes is compulsively readable and wholly believable- which, of course, is why it‘s so very disturbing. Very well done. Coming in August.

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AlexGeorge
Madness of Crowds | Louise Penny
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Pickpick

As dependably brilliant as ever. This time with a post-pandemic twist. Superb. Watch for it in August.

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AlexGeorge
A Door Behind a Door | Yelena Moskovich
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Pickpick

Unsettling, ferocious, complicated, engrossing, inscrutable. Yelena Moskovich writes like nobody else. Stunning stuff.

BkClubCare Drove through your town about an hour ago! Headed to points east. 1y
BarbaraBB Tempting cover! 1y
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AlexGeorge
AS YOU WERE. | ELAINE. FEENEY
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Pickpick

“We should be valued in neither our successes nor our failures, but in our endurance.” Feeney is a poet and it shows in this, her first novel: the language is miraculous. A terminal cancer diagnosis has Sinead, the narrator, marooned in a hospital ward in Galway. Reluctant to admit her own truths to anyone, her fellow patients give her a lifeline back to what matters most. Painful, hilarious, and unforgettable.

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AlexGeorge
My Monticello: Fiction | Jocelyn Nicole Johnson
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Pickpick

This is one of the most astonishing and powerful books I‘ve read in a long, long time. An absolutely stunning debut collection. The invention, the language, the passion, the stories! It has everything. Coming in October. Don‘t miss it.

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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

Gripping and fast-paced, this is an immensely entertaining read. The laconic protagonists, on a mission to avenge their sons‘ murders and make amends for their own shortcomings as fathers, meet some fantastically nasty bad guys, and the results are deeply satisfying. There is a real humanity in the storytelling which elevates this thriller to another league. Highly recommended. Coming in July.

Cinfhen Sounds powerful/ thanks for posting & sharing. 1y
14 likes1 comment
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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

Touching, affectionate, fascinating and hilarious. This memoir of the author‘s close friendship with Philip Roth is a delight from start to finish, and a great appetizer ahead of Blake Bailey‘s biography (which is out on Tuesday.)

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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

Pure pleasure. Gobbled it up in a day. Possibly made me a little homesick.

18 likes3 stack adds
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AlexGeorge
Child in the Valley | Gordy Sauer
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Pickpick

Good storytelling never goes out of fashion. In this blistering, haunting debut novel Gordy Sauer takes us on a stunning, brutal journey from Missouri to California at the height of the gold rush. Rich in detail, Sauer‘s pinpoint prose pulls the reader exquisitely on to a deeply satisfying resolution. Coming in August, and highly recommended.

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AlexGeorge
Worldly Things | Michael Kleber-Diggs
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Pickpick

Vacation poetry, part 2. “But we are strange trees, reluctant in this / forest.” Michael Kleber-Diggs does not avert his gaze from what lies before us, and does not allow us to look away, either. This is a searing, serious, exquisite book.

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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

Glorious. If you‘d asked me whether a book-length poem about a basketball player I‘d never heard of would be my thing, I would probably have said no - but this is Ross Gay, people, and I‘ll read anything he writes. My reward? A brilliant, beautiful, totally absorbing read. Highly recommended.

Suet624 Thank you for letting me know about this one. 2y
19 likes2 stack adds1 comment
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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

We did an event with Wright Thompson at Skylark Bookshop a while back and I have been saving this for a quiet weekend when I could dive in and immerse myself in the story and Wright‘s always-spectacular writing. I know next to nothing about bourbon but that mattered not one jot. Thompson can tell a story like few others, and this is a wonderful one, in addition to being a touching meditation on fatherhood, families, and the legacy we leave behind.

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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

Of course the analysis is brilliant and illuminating and often very funny. But what shines through this marvelous book is Saunders‘s reverence for the Russian masters, his love of the act of writing, and his generosity of spirit and humility. For me, the real gold is in the “Afterthoughts”, where he really expands on his own approach and thinking. Highly recommended!!

20 likes2 stack adds
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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

“Grammar is a piano I play by ear... all I know about grammar is its infinite power.” #didion #genius #writing

blurb
AlexGeorge
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“The strongest impulse she had was not towards love but towards that burning loneliness, and she knew by nature the tune‘s circle and turn - it‘s the way the wound wants the knife wants the wound wants the knife.”

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AlexGeorge
Crudo: A Novel | Olivia Laing
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Pickpick

I‘ll read anything Olivia Laing writes. This strange, lovely novel was deliciously, bewitchingly eccentric and touching. I read it over the course of one very rainy Saturday. I will read it again.

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AlexGeorge
Tin Man | Sarah Winman
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Pickpick

Rereading this small miracle of a novel for a book club discussion I‘m leading next month and it‘s every bit as beautiful and devastating as I remember.

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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

A lovely diversion from all the mess in the world, although his descriptions of infant-induced insomnia had me remembering those days. My kids are 15 and 19 now but some things never leave you... the descriptions of Rome were evocative and delicious. I lived in Paris for a year and Doerr captures that displaced helplessness beautifully.

LeslieO I loved this one. Was he writing All the Light We Cannot See? 2y
AlexGeorge Yes!!!! 2y
LeslieO So cool! 2y
18 likes1 stack add3 comments
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AlexGeorge
Homeland Elegies | Ayad Akhtar
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Pickpick

“... when he thought of the place now, America, he found it hard to believe he‘d spent so much of his life there. As much as he‘d always wanted to think of himself as American, the truth was he‘d only ever aspired to the condition.” What a superb novel. Brilliant, innovative, and provocative. Can‘t recommend highly enough.

19 likes1 stack add
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AlexGeorge
Libertie: A Novel | Kaitlyn Greenidge
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Pickpick

I thought WE LOVE YOU, CHARLIE FREEMAN was a marvel, and Kaitlyn Greenidge‘s second novel delivers on all that promise, and then some. People will be talking about this book for a long time. Comes out March 30, 2021.

LeslieO Gorgeous cover! 2y
20 likes1 stack add1 comment
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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

Moving, inspiring, full of wisdom and hope. I know I‘ll be returning to this again and again. Highly recommended for a good kick up the arse (as we Brits say.)

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AlexGeorge
Arcadia | Lauren Groff
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Pickpick

This gorgeously written book - seriously, every sentence is a wonder - is a deliciously slow burn. I finished it days ago and am still thinking about it.

12 likes4 stack adds
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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

Gorgeous, quiet, powerful, poignant. This one will stick with me.

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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

“To become a writer is to have left early no matter what time you got home.” I‘ll read anything Rachel Kushner writes. These essays are sublime. Grab a copy when this comes out in April.

21 likes1 stack add
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AlexGeorge
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Pickpick

Absolutely wild story, brilliantly told. If only all biographies were as gripping as this one.

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AlexGeorge
My Life as a Villainess | Laura Lippman
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Pickpick

I loved this. Laura Lippmann is very smart, snarky, and thoughtful, but absolutely refuses to take herself very seriously. Refreshing and welcome entertainment of the highest order.

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AlexGeorge
Giovanni's Room | James Baldwin
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Pickpick

Oh, my heart. This book. Gorgeous writing. The ending is devastating.

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AlexGeorge
Costalegre | Courtney Maum
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Pickpick

So, I loved this. A dazzling, heartbreaking novel, beautiful and not a little strange, but full of life and heart and a fierce energy. We all need more books like this one.

20 likes1 stack add
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AlexGeorge
Fleishman Is in Trouble: A Novel | Taffy Brodesser-Akner
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Pickpick

Yes, it‘s hilarious. Yes, it‘s smartly written, and very well done. But what makes this book stand out, to me anyway, was the blisteringly accurate observations and the humane portrayal of deeply flawed characters. This book has such heart; even the more awful characters get an empathetic hearing. I loved it.