book review

The Good Luck of Right Now

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The Good Luck of Right Now
By Matthew Quick

This book breaks my heart more ways than I can count. The Good Luck of Right Now by Matthew Quick received mixed reviews when it came out, I think because many people are unfamiliar or uncomfortable with mental illness. And that’s what it’s about, at least on the initial level. You have a young man who through no fault of his own is born minus a father, with an overprotective mother and a less than intelligent mind. But in some ways he is more intelligent that the average person because despite his obsession with Richard Gere and a certain ‘girlbrarian’. Bartholomew Neil has something to say about kindness, and exhibits a gentle humanity from which we all could learn.

The story begins at the death of his mother, whom he cared for until her passing. Their lives were entwined to the point that Bartholomew needs therapy to fully process what has happened and how this will affect his future. Weaving into his life is an older alcoholic priest who defrocks himself in an effort to absolve past sins, several therapists with hidden agendas, and two siblings dealing with tragedies of their own.

Max, who is grieving his special friend Alice, meets Bartholomew in a therapy session. Bartholomew is shocked at this man’s open display of grief, his crude profanity, and such blatant disrespect for social mores. But Max’s very real pain touches Bartholomew’s own, and later, over a beer they become friends. In that strange serendipity of life Max’s sister is the ‘Girlbrarian’ Bartholomew admires from afar, and now may happily meet. But she is wounded too, and it’s  painful experience she hides.

I believe Matthew Quick has a special affinity for people who are special. And really? Maybe people who are a bit closer to God than you or I. The Good luck of Right Now is a wild ride from beginning to end. It’s sweet, sad, very funny, and filled with love. I give it four daisies for bringing to friendship to life.

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Reviewer: Leigh

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The Good Luck of Right Now
By Matthew Quick

 

Matthew Quick
Harper
http://www.harpercollins.com
2014
ISBN 9780062285539

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