ARC Review: Mrs. Fletcher| Rated XXX

mrs-fletcher-9781501144028_hr

Title: Mrs. Fletcher

Author: Tom Perrotta

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Publication Date: August 01, 2017

Rating: 3 Stars

 

 

 

I received an ARC copy of Mrs. Fletcher in exchange for an honest review. Thanks goes to NetGalley as well as Simon & Schuster for this advanced copy which is to be released August 1, 2017.

“They were glued together like prom dates, swaying under the spell of ‘Sexual Healing,’ which felt just then like an uncanny coincidence, a not-so-subtle message from the universe, even though it was just another song on Amanda’s iPhone, part of a crowd-pleasing soul- and Motown-heavy playlist that had kept them going for the past hour ad a half.”

Dear fellow Babblers,

Tom Penrotta’s seductive, evocative, over the top humorous new novel, Mrs. Fletcher, is an exploration of gender, sexuality and self discovery – three extremely relevant topics of the day. This novel is recommended for mature and open-minded audience members who seek an adventurous twist, sure to shake their reading experience. Well, at least that’s how the story went for me. More than a pleasurable read, I took away new perceptions and therefore opinions towards several of today’s controversial topics circulating around identity and relationships with oneself as well as with others. 

Goodreads Review:

From one of the most popular and bestselling authors of our time, a penetrating and hilarious new novel about sex, love, and identity on the frontlines of America’s culture wars.

Eve Fletcher is trying to figure out what comes next. A forty-six-year-old divorcee whose beloved only child has just left for college, Eve is struggling to adjust to her empty nest when one night her phone lights up with a text message. Sent from an anonymous number, the mysterious sender tells Eve, “U R my MILF!” Over the months that follow, that message comes to obsess Eve. While leading her all-too-placid life—serving as Executive Director of the local senior center by day and taking a community college course on Gender and Society at night—Eve can’t curtail her own interest in a porn website called MILFateria.com, which features the erotic exploits of ordinary, middle-aged women like herself. Before long, Eve’s online fixations begin to spill over into real life, revealing new romantic possibilities that threaten to upend her quiet suburban existence.

Meanwhile, miles away at the state college, Eve’s son Brendan—a jock and aspiring frat boy—discovers that his new campus isn’t nearly as welcoming to his hard-partying lifestyle as he had imagined. Only a few weeks into his freshman year, Brendan is floundering in a college environment that challenges his white-dude privilege and shames him for his outmoded, chauvinistic ideas of sex. As the New England autumn turns cold, both mother and son find themselves enmeshed in morally fraught situations that come to a head on one fateful November night.

Sharp, witty, and provocative, Mrs. Fletcher is a timeless examination of sexuality, identity, parenthood, and the big clarifying mistakes people can make when they’re no longer sure of who they are or where they belong.

Babble:

Mrs. Fletcher alternates between the lives of two protagonists, Eve Fletcher and her son Brendan. Each seem to be suffering separate struggles that they do not want the other to know about. Eve is a middle-aged divorced, but still attractive woman working as Executive for a senior center. She faces an extraordinary crisis when Branden packs up and leaves for college. The subject of sex is immediately introduced into the novel in the beginning when Eve overhears Brendan’s musky and inappropriate slurs as his ex, Becca, gives him a blowjob in his room. An uncomfortable car ride to drop her son off to college marks the beginning of a new beginning to Eve’s dismal life.

That very night she receives a mysteriously intriguing text which has pornographic connotations. From this point on Eve’s perceptions of reality, her sex and her identity all become called into question. Eve tumbles into lonely nights – just she, her laptop, and the explicit sites she visits online to witness others’ wild nights. Aroused by a number of lesbian pornographic videos, Eve decides to enroll in class on gender and sexuality at her local community college. There, she meets a host of characters from a wide variety of age ranges, cultural backgrounds, and sexual orientations including a transgender teacher and a horny young college dork. Eve’s new personal habits even begin to threaten her career as she becomes increasingly attracted to her young assistant, Amanda.

Meanwhile, Brendan struggles to adapt to the new, fast-paced adult world which, in the course of the novel, he never really seems to achieve. In Brendan’s ideal world, he is still the best football player, he still has the hottest girlfriend who gives him the most amazing blow jobs. In Brendan’s ideal world he is still the best looking jock and his definition of being a college student consists of minimal studying and endless frat parties that last into the wee hours of the morning with an infinite river of 30% alcohol vodka waiting to touch his puckered lips. In short, Brendan’s expects the Earth to continue to turn in his favor to the disadvantage of the rest of the world. Brendan’s narrow-minded selfishness and slanderous treatment towards the opposite sex ultimately leads to his emotional and psychological breakdown towards the end of the novel and right back to the place he started his “journey”, his mom’s house.

Eve and Brendan’s fates inevitably coincide in which they each are obliged to respond to unpredictably new situatons that cause them to question who they are to themselves as well as the environment in which they find themselves. These protagonists make detrimental decisions that affect their fates in striking ways that stretch beyond the norm.

The relationship between Eve and her son, although it is most definitely often alluded throughout the novel, is not the main focus and they each never truly seem to understand one another. Instead, Mrs. Fletcher is a deeply personal reflection on morality and to what extent one’s personal choices are influenced by their interaction with their immediate environment. Perotta’s writing style is at the same time humorous and satirical. He aims to draw attention to our evolving society with a lighthearted language that renders Mrs. Fletcher both enjoyable and mind boggling. This book truly does make you think twice about the rawness of who you are, or, better yet, who you think you are.

However, I’m left to give Mrs. Fletcher only 3 stars because of the overly emphasized “dirt.” In my opinion, there is just too much sex going on here and not enough story. There are multiple instances throughout where the plot is paused to reiterate Eve’s fascination with her body, her sexual fantasies, and her promiscuous thoughts. In essence, there is not really all that much that happens. Eve and Brendan never really change by the end of the novel, but remain static characters who witness and observe a confusing world around them that changes and has affects on how to look upon themselves.

Yours Truly,

cropped-delphine-5

Mrs. Fletcher is a novel requiring a particular audience: mature, open-minded towards sexuality, and intrigued my explicitly promiscuous thematics. 

(Book image credits go to Goodreads)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 thoughts on “ARC Review: Mrs. Fletcher| Rated XXX

  1. I read it also and I thought it was going to be more like the old movie, The Graduate. It wasn’t at all! It had a lot of humor, but for sure needs a mature audience! Great review!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, I haven’t heard of that movie before – I’ll definitely have to look into it. I noticed the humor, but it wasn’t the type of style I usually enjoy and I even found myself a bit struggling to finish. Thanks! 🙂

      Like

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