• The Dabblers

Fleishman is in Trouble by Taffy Brodesser-Akner

Book cover of Manhattan skyline upside down with white text

Hajar bloody loved Fleishman is in Trouble.

Super clever and also rather depressing, it follows Toby Fleishman - the hardworking husband who's clearly done absolutely nothing wrong and doesn't deserve to be treated with such disdain by his evil wife.

Obviously there’s swearing, spoilers and the usual laughing at one-star reviews, but it’s worth pointing out that one of them was actually hideous and anti-semitic.

We’ve kept it in because well, we wanted to keep in our shock and despair at it, but if you don’t want to hear that sort of stuff, do miss out the 31st to the 35th minute.

Publisher’s Blurb

Toby Fleishman thought he knew what to expect when he and his wife of almost fifteen years separated: weekends and every other holiday with the kids, some residual bitterness, the occasional moment of tension in their co-parenting negotiations. He could not have predicted that one day, in the middle of his summer of sexual emancipation, Rachel would just drop their two children off at his place and simply not return. He had been working so hard to find equilibrium in his single life. The winds of his optimism, long dormant, had finally begun to pick up. Now this.

As Toby tries to figure out where Rachel went, all while juggling his patients at the hospital, his never-ending parental duties, and his new app-assisted sexual popularity, his tidy narrative of the spurned husband with the too-ambitious wife is his sole consolation. But if Toby ever wants to truly understand what happened to Rachel and what happened to his marriage, he is going to have to consider that he might not have seen things all that clearly in the first place.

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Read Claire Fallon’s Huffington Post review

Read Katy Waldman’s review in the New Yorker

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