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This Book Will Save your Life

Homes, A. M.

Book - 2006
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
This Book Will Save your Life
From the author of Music for Torching—an uplifting and apocalyptic tale set in Los Angeles about one man’s efforts to bring himself back to life Since her debut in 1989, A. M. Homes has been among the boldest and most original voices of her generation, acclaimed for the psychological accuracy and unnerving emotional intensity of her storytelling. Her keen ability to explore how extraordinary the ordinary can be is at the heart of her touching and funny new novel, her first in six years.Richard Novak is a modern-day Everyman, a middle-aged divorcé trading stocks out of his home. He has done such a good job getting his life under control that he needs no one—except his trainer, nutritionist, and housekeeper. He is functionally dead and doesn’t even notice until two incidents—an attack of intense pain that lands him in the emergency room, and the discovery of an expanding sinkhole outside his house—conspire to hurl him back into the world. On his way home from the hospital, Richard forms the first of many new relationships: He meets Anhil, the doughnut shop owner, an immigrant who dreams big. He finds a weeping housewife in the produce section of the supermarket, helps save a horse that has fallen into the sinkhole, daringly rescues a woman from the trunk of her kidnapper’s car, and, after the sinkhole claims his house and he has to relocate to a Malibu rental, he befriends a reluctant counterculture icon. In the end, Richard is also brought back in closer touch with his family—his aging parents, his brilliant brother, the beloved ex-wife whom he still desires, and finally, before the story’s breathtaking finale, with his estranged son Ben.The promised land of Los Angeles—a surreal city of earthquakes, wildfires, mudslides, and feral Chihuahuas—is also very much a character in This Book Will Save Your Life. A vivid, revealing novel about compassion, transformation, and what can happen if you are willing to lose yourself and open up to the world around you, it should significantly broaden Homes’s already substantial audience.

Publisher: New York : Viking, 2006
ISBN: 0670034932
Branch Call Number: HOMES A
PS3558.O448 T483 2006
Characteristics: 372 p. ; 24 cm


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Feb 01, 2015
  • WVMLStaffPicks rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

A lonely rich guy finds his life coming apart at the seams as a big sinkhole grows in the front yard of his Beverly Hills home. A panic attack propels him along on a new path –befriending a donut shop owner, an overwhelmed stay-at-home mom and a formerly famous writer, as well as trying to connect with his estranged son. This is a midlife crisis in the style of Steve Martin – funny-sad and pure theatre of the absurd.

Mar 21, 2011
  • DonnaKirby rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Comment on Comments from theraag:
The dialogue is ackward because the characters are.

Otherwise this book is enjoyable and fun read if you are familiar with Los Angeles. This book is not a psycological guide or self-help book, which one might have guessed according to the title.

Jan 19, 2011
  • dumbghosts rated this: 2.5 stars out of 5.

Awkward dialog, one dimensional characters and overused ideas do severe injustice to the rather dramatic title that Homes has chosen for this book. If only Homes could write about the mid life crises of a disconnected LA businessman the same way she can write about a pedophile (see "The End of Alice", which is a disturbing and brilliant book).


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