Other People's Houses by Abbi Waxman

Other People's Houses by Abbi Waxman

Other People's Houses
by Abbi Waxman
Berkley (April 3, 2018)
352 pages
Advance copy provided by publisher

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Having long ago discovered that dysfunctional relationships were often a key to my enjoyment of fiction, preferably with a side of dry humor and sarcasm, when I read the description of Other People's Houses I assumed it would be worth a try. When it was later announced as a Book of the Month pick, I was excited to have snagged an early copy. 

Early comments I read from other readers, however, seemed to dull my enthusiasm; I wasn't sure whether I would be willing to shuffle around the books I was really looking forward to reading in order to make time for this one. I am happy to report that Other People's Houses was definitely worth the time. 

She took her time, flipping through the racks in her walk-in closet, spinning her shoe tower, and steaming her face to open her pores and maximize the effectiveness of her skin regime. None of that was true: She pulled on the same pair of jeans she’d had on the day before and the hooded sweatshirt she found under them. Look, if they hadn’t wanted to be worn a second day they would have run away, but instead they just laid there overnight, asking for it.

There were a couple of moments when I, a childless introvert who couldn't care less about her neighbor's exploits, felt like the novel might have bogged down just a bit; Waxman rarely allows the pace to linger for long, though, and I found myself surprisingly invested in her characters and their relatable struggles. From marriage, adult friendship, and same sex partnerships to the comedy and challenges that come along with all of these relationships, Waxman entertains. 

Marriage had so little to do with the bedroom, and so much to do with every other room in the house. Conversations around the kitchen table, discussions about toothpaste and toilet paper, decisions about pets and children and car insurance. How you chose to physically please each other was such a small part of it, but it got all the press.

If you are a reader who is offended by foul language, just a heads up that this is not your book; having said that, I love the fact that the novel's characters speak candidly about their relationships and challenges. In spite of its minor flaws, this aspect of the book kept me engaged and it was just what I needed. This would be a great selection for a weekend or vacation read; I promise you'll laugh out loud, likely on several occasions. 

New Week, New Book (4/9/18)

New Week, New Book (4/9/18)