The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving
A NovelLarge Print - 2013
From Library Staff
The main character here is the saddest, of the sad. He's surrounded by equally damaged people, yet he leaves each of them a little better off than he found them.
JCLHelenH Apr 19, 2013
I don't know if Confucious really said "Helping Others is the Best Way to Help Yourself", but it was the beginning for Ben. The thing I loved most about this book is that, as damaged as Ben is, he leaves each and every person he meets a little better off than he found them.
From the critics
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From Book Group Buzz blog, post by Misha Stone:
Jonathan Evison, author of All About Lulu and West of Here, has a new novel out, The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving, and it is fantastic. It is a novel full of wit, heartache and redemption. Benjamin Benjamin is looking at 40 with few job prospects, a broken marriage and losses that would rip the average human being apart. Benjamin takes a job as a caretaker for Trev, a teenager with muscular dystrophy. Benjamin and Trev trade jocular banter as Benjamin shadowboxes with his past. A roadtrip occurs between these two unlikely partners, a journey that changes them both and helps them move forward.
It’s always hard to sum up a book you enjoyed and while comparisons never do a book justice, sometimes they can enlighten someone else to reasons why they should give it a try. The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving made me think of why I loved the film “Rushmore”–it looks like a silly caper of a movie until you see where its secret and deeply sad heart is buried. Evison’s new novel also made me think of writers like Jess Walter and Jonathan Tropper, two authors that also balance comedy and tragedy on a knife edge. I also loved this book because it captures my childhood stomping grounds–the grungy around the edges Kitsap County towns where people still play darts and smoke dope at parties with strangers and a lonely man can turn himself around despite the odds.
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