The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P. are absorbing to be sure.

This is the story of a highly intelligent, analytical, though egotistical and fault-finding man, and his relational and romantic ventures.  To me, this is the ultimate, quintessential beach read.  Kicking the butts of run-of-the-mill chick lit such as “Something Borrowed,” and Jennifer Weiner and Elin Hilderbrand books, which as an aside, I loved, but to me, this book is far wittier, smarter, and just way more refreshing to read.

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I reveled in tearing through this book on my solo adventure to the French Riviera.  So great.

The main character, while at times distinctly unlikable, is stimulating and engaging to follow. The story beginning as he arrives at the dinner party of his ex, Elisa, or as he used to call her “Elisa, the beautiful.”  Nate having broken up with her on tiring of her inability to listen and continued attempts at changing him.  She begged that they “remain friends, please?”  An arrangement of which he is dubious, though for now, here they are.

At the dinner party, he meets Hannah, who following such, reaches out to him via email with questions and opinions regarding an article he is in the midst of writing.  The topic of this having come up at the dinner party and sparking a lively debate.

Though initially hesitant, Nate responds to Hannahs seeming invitation for the eliciting of something between them.  Small reservations aside, the two begin dating.  For a time, Nate finds her intriguing and impressive.  The two, rather smitten with one another for the first couple of months.  Eventually though, he begins picking her apart in his own mind.  Deciding on flaws and supposed offensive or frustrating intentions she may have had which, as the reader, it becomes apparent are just as likely to be in his head.  Nate creates problems where they may or may not truly be.  What follows is a disinigration.

 

This read is an engrossing and immensely entertaining narrative and story, whether Nate is consistently likable or not (he isnt) (and yet, who is perpetually, consistently likable?  No one.  We are instead, human.  All of us with excellent qualities resulting in great moments, as well as crappy qualities leading to similarly not-so-good moments).

Reading from the perspective of his vantage point is fascinating.  With regard to both, his exes, as well as his perceptions and impressions of women in general.  Especially, I found, as a woman.  And whats more, with this book having been written by a woman.

The prose is incredibly smart, laugh out loud funny, and the story an entertaining page turner.  Her characters, relatable and coming alive amidst the words on the pages.  This is a great, fast paced, mucho fun book.

Its interesting to read a conception of what might be the thoughts of a man with regards to women.  Granted, he is just one man (and fictional, at that), with his own particular personality, temperament, background, and personal lens through which he is viewing them.  However, within fiction, we find glimmers and layers of truth.  Fiction is typically based on some level of actuality and human experience.  And the viewpoint of Nathaniel P is certainly an amusing one through which to read.

Snag a copy of your own here!  Just click the cover image.

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