Thursday, February 19, 2009
Ad Hudler's Man of the House ~ Reviewed
Man of the House: A Novel
by Ad Hudler
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Ballantine Books (September 30, 2008)
For more than a decade, Linc Menner has raised the status of househusband to an art form. . . .
While his wife, Jo, brings home the bacon, Linc Menner holds down the fort–his gourmet cooking is sublime, his cleaning unrivaled, and his devotion to his daughter, Violet, unparalleled.
But when the Menners relocate from upstate New York to the steamy beaches of Naples, Florida, life takes an unexpected turn. As the Menners renovate their new home Linc’s bliss turns into a war zone of contractors, dry wall dust, and chaos. And suddenly being surrounded by guys whose faces go blank as he expounds on the virtues of lump-free gravy makes Linc realize he has forgotten what it feels like to be a man.
So Linc trades his flip-flops for work boots, and his wild mop of hair for a barbershop buzz, and marches his flabby physique to the nearest gym–attracting the secret devotion of one of Violet’s teacher in the process. And his stunned family watches helplessly as they lose the man who keeps them all together. To make matters worse, it’s hurricane season and there’s a category 5 heading right for Naples. As life on the home front explodes into hilarity and catastrophe, Linc must chart his own delightfully crooked course to finally become the Man of the House.
Linc Menner has tasted the Martha Stewart life, and it's beginning to curdle. Is he man enough to handle hurricanes, hormonal female overload, power tools, and a ripped-up kitchen?
Told in different first person points of view the reader watches a man's search for meaning and his place in steamy Florida. A very entertaining read, I enjoyed my visit to Linc's world. I was impressed with Hudler's writing skills and sarcastic sense of humor. His handling of family was sensitive, down to earth, and satisfying.
Linc's journey boils down to, a real man isn't defined by muscles, the vehicle he drives, or his knowledge of interior design, a real man should be defined by the whole package. I will warn the more sensitive readers that Linc's world veers into R-rated. A man who is redetermining exactly what a man is and how he's supposed to act sometimes visits some dark thoughts and places.
Overall, a charming and entertaining novel.
Reviewed by: Kelly Klepfer