The death of Judd Foxmanâ€™s father marks the first time that the entire Foxman portal7.info Editorial Reviews. portal7.info Review. site Best of the Month, August : Jonathan This Is Where I Leave You: A Novel by [Tropper, Jonathan]. Read "This Is Where I Leave You A Novel" by Jonathan Tropper available from Rakuten Kobo. Sign up today and get $5 off your first download. A riotously funny .
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This is where I leave you / Jonathan Tropper. p. cm. ISBN: 1. Divorced men—Fiction 2. Fathers—Death—Fiction. 3. Brothers and sisters— Fiction. A riotously funny, emotionally raw New York Times bestselling novel about love, marriage, divorce, family, and the ties that bind—whether we like. All the characters in this book are fictitious and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental. A CIP catalogue.
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Marriages fall apart. Everyone has reasons, but no one really knows why. We got married young. Maybe that was our mistake. In New York State, you can legally get married before you can do a shot of tequila. It was a tragic fact but worlds away from our reality. I was stupidly proud of her ass when we were dating. How an unspoken point system will come into play, with each side keeping score according to their own complicated set of rules. I want to materialize before that smug little shit like the Ghost of Christmas Past and scare 16 J o n a t h a n Tr o p p e r the matrimonial impulse right out of him.
Just go for the tequila. By that point, I probably should have suspected something. Adultery, like any other crime, generates evidence as an inevitable byproduct, like plants and oxygen or humans and, well, shit. The clues must have been piling up for a while already, like unread e-mails, just a click away from being read.
And even then, as I watched them humping and moaning on my bed, it took me a little while to put it all together. All I knew was that it was my bed, and the only man who had any business having sex in it was me. Also, our neighbors, the Bowens, were in their late sixties and Mr. Bowen was eating his way toward his third heart attack.
So, all things considered, it was probably a good thing that I was in my own house. But my brain was shielding me from the realization, giving me little random thoughts to process, just to keep me distracted, really, while, behind the scenes, my subconscious scrambled to assemble the facts and prepare a strategy for damage control. Not that I was judging the men who did.
I was judging him pretty severely, actually.
He talks about sex, cars, sports, and money. But mostly about sex. He announces and then rates his own farts. He is a professional asshole, syndicated in twelve markets. The advertisers line up like sheep. I was his producer. I booked the guests. I met with the station bosses about format and sponsorship. I liaised with legal, H.
I ordered lunch and bleeped the curse words. And when the show went into syndication, he threatened to walk when the station balked at my contract.
Wade is tall and beefy, with dark, wiry hair and a cleft that makes his chin look like a tiny ass. His teeth are a shade of white not found in nature. At forty, Wade still references his fraternity brothers like they matter, still evaluates passing breasts out loud, still calls them tits.
He is that guy. Her head was arched back, chin pointed up to God, as she panted heavily through her wideopen mouth, eyes clamped shut with pleasure. Was it slightly curved, the way some cocks are, hitting places inside of her that mine had never hit, heretofore untapped bits of soft tissue that made her cry out like that? Was Wade a more skilled lover?
Had he studied Tantric technique? He had certainly slept with enough hookers and porn stars to have gotten some hands-on instruction. From where I was standing, it certainly looked like Wade knew what he was doing, but, in fairness, I had never seen myself have sex. Jen and I never videotaped ourselves the way some couples did, and now I kind of regretted that. Reviewing the game tapes every now and then might have been helpful.
For all I knew, I looked every bit as convincing. But that yelp. But I already was home. She could probably tell me a few things. And still I stood there, letting it happen, trembling like a weed.
Six months? How many positions had they mastered? How much of my marriage was a lie? My life, as I knew it, was over. This is probably as good a time as any to mention that I was holding a large birthday cake.
Jen always called in sick on her birthday. In the driveway, I opened the box and planted thirtythree candles and one for good luck. I could hear her moving around upstairs, so I discarded the box and headed up, treading slowly and evenly on the balls of my feet like a cat burglar, articulating each step the way you do to keep candles lit.
Now the candles were already more than halfway melted, gobs of spent red wax splashed across the pristine white frosting like blood dripped on snow. If things had gone according to plan, Jen would have blown them out by now. How could she do it? When did it start? Were they in love, or simply after the thrill of illicit sex? Which answer did I prefer? But right then, at that very moment, it came to me like a revelation, the single most important question to be asked, and I was pretty damn certain I was ready to know the answer.
Pretty damn far, as it turns out. After that, many things happened, quickly and simultaneously. As Wade screamed and burned and came hotly into his hands, Jen screamed as well, rolling as fast as she could in the other direction. And then everyone stopped screaming and there followed one of those moments of dead silence where you just stand there feeling the planet spin beneath your feet until it makes you dizzy.
And I actually felt myself moving toward her, but then stopped. A complete nervous breakdown was not out of the question. Jen looked up at me, stricken, her eyes red with tears, blood and snot running from her nose down her chin and onto her chest. I actually felt bad for her, and hated myself for it. Nine years of marriage gone in a heartbeat, and not very much to say about it. I stepped out of the bedroom, slamming the door behind me hard enough to dislodge something in the drywall, which could be heard rattling inside as it fell.
When word of our troubles spread through the neighborhood, her bruised face would be the subject of tireless speculation among the housewives as they whispered over their nonfat lattes. I closed my eyes and rubbed my temples. Do you understand? It was a relationship. It meant that Jen and Wade had an anniversary. Jen wore a lavender negligee and I read her this goofy poem that made her cry so that later I could still taste the salt on her cheeks. And, now that you mention it, where did they count from?
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