Another review of Twenty-one Truths About Love

Another early review of Twenty-one Truths About Love from another important outlet - Booklist.

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Dicks manages to create tension, pathos, humor, and some searing melodrama in a novel written entirely in lists. Daniel Mayrock, soon to be a father, quits a dull teaching position to open his own bookstore. Following the advice of his therapist, he starts making lists, and list-making becomes a compulsion as he submits all aspects of his life to enumeration. He ranks his employees, analyzes his interactions with others, and documents his many foibles and phobias.

Through lists, Dan’s rich, sympathetic voice shines, and as he organizes his opinions about music, his love of his wife, and his many vices and neuroses, he is funny and insightful. Like Benjamin Kunkel’s Indecision (2005) and Joshua Ferris’s To Rise Again at a Decent Hour (2014), this tale explores the struggles of a man attempting to navigate contemporary adulthood and his fear that he is unable to function like everyone around him. Often moving, sometimes shocking, always entertaining, this superbly crafted work emphasizes the incalculable variety of the novel form.

— Alexander Moran

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