A deliciously smart and funny debut novel about loss, libido…and true love.
A decade ago, Claire Byrne, now thirty-two, put her biggest career aspirations and deepest personal desires on hold when she became the wife of Charlie Byrne, the famous sexologist and man about town. Equal parts Alfred Kinsey and Warren Beatty, Charlie is charming yet pompous, supportive yet unfaithful, a firm believer that sex and love can’t coexist. When Charlie is killed one day, in an absurd sidewalk collision with a falling sculpture (a Giacometti, no less!), his death turns Claire’s world upside down. She misses Charlie. She needs to reinvent herself. As unseemly as it may be to admit it, she longs to lose her “widow’s virginity.” And she wants love. Over the course of a year, Claire eats too little and drinks too much. She sees first- and second-opinion shrinks, the Village griot, a psychic, and a “botanomanist.” She dates a billionaire, a journalist, a hockey player, and even Jack Huxley — the movie star.
And, as Claire moves on from Charlie and searches for herself, she comes to realize she’s been given a second chance to live the meaningful and passionate life that passed her by once before.
Listeners of Carole Radziwill’s debut memoir, the lauded and New York Times bestselling What Remains, know well that she has a particular talent for writing about friendship, loss, and love. And listeners of The Widow’s Guide to Sex and Dating will discover that those gifts extend delightfully and tenderly to the literary screwball comedy. In spinning Claire’s story, Radziwill limns a world where glamorous movie stars fall for brainy working girls and where true friends must be leaned on until true love arrives, and she reports back with a novel that is as romantic as it is funny and wise.
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She narrated her own book, and...
Wow, really bad choice. She reads it as though she didn't even write it and doesn't understand the message, placing a flat, monotonous cadence and tone on every word, with no inflection or change in tone at all except for going down a note or two at the end of each sentence repeatedly like a machine. And, the way she sounds as if she's an elderly woman whose hearing aid batteries have run down is really grating. It's almost like she's sort of hollering the whole thing at you. I want to say that this will be a fun read, it sure seems that way so far, but I only got one or two chapters in before I decided to return the audio and get the paperback. I suggest you do the same!
- Liz "I like realistic books that stretch the truth and the laws of physics...and also emotionally resonant narration that doesn't suck."
I wanted to really like this book but it wasn't very fun and it tried too hard.
No! She should not have read this book. An outside narrator would have been so much better.
Parts were cute and it went by quickly.