Fleishman Is In Trouble

Published in 2019, by Taffy Brodesser-Akner

This book is one of the best I’ve read this year. It is funny but so painfully true to life. There were moments of reading it that I felt I understood people and relationships better than I ever have in my life. Very, very few times, it felt a little tedious, but that is only because it can be tedious to do the work that was required of these characters to see themselves as they truly are. The narration is unique and brilliant, but I won’t bother telling you what it’s about, other than a divorce between rich people in New York City who you don’t hate as much as you’d expect. Beyond that very basic plot summary, it’s about ageing and responsibility, love and relationships. And although it is focused mainly on the male character, it is most of all about being a woman today, about how the sexual revolution has still not completed. I can’t say it any better than Akner: “The world diminished a woman from the moment she stopped being sexually available to it…All those things can drive you crazy if you’re a smart person. If you are a smart woman, you cannot stand by and remain sane once you fully understand, as a smart person does, the constraints of this world on a woman.” Four stars.

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