Thursday, May 14, 2015


Housebreaking by Dan Pope
Simon & Schuster: 5/12/2015
eBook review copy, 288 pages
hardcover ISBN-13: 9781476745909

My Thoughts:

Benjamin Mandelbaum, a man in his mid-forties, has just been kicked out of his house by his wife Judy after she suspects he has had another affair. After two previous affairs, this suspected third marks the end of their marriage. Ben takes his dog and moves back home to live with his father, Leonard, in Wintonbury, a suburb of Hartford, Connecticut. Leonard, 84, has started dating again, much to Ben's surprise.

Ben claims to miss his family, but once he discovers that an old high school crush, Audrey, has moved back to town and is now living just up the street with her busy lawyer husband, Andrew, and troubled teenage daughter, Emily, that point seems to escape him. Ben and Audrey start having an affair almost immediately after meeting. But there is a whole lot more trouble brewing behind the scenes and everyone seems to have secrets they are keeping and information they are withholding.

The quality of the writing is excellent. Pope manages to give each character tells their own story in their unique voice, explaining their unhappiness and revealing shocking secrets. Adultery looms so large in the plot of this dark drama featuring a plethora of dysfunctional lives in two families that it was overwhelming for me. I wanted the adults to snap out of it and start looking at the consequences of their actions. Pope does manage to infuse a little humor while presenting us with this collection of very flawed people. Housebreaking by Dan Pope is recommended.

Disclosure: My Kindle edition was courtesy of Simon & Schuster for review purposes.

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