Man of the Year by Caroline Louise Walker
Beware the Man of the Year. You may praise him, resent him, even want to be him: but beneath the elegant trappings that define him, danger looms.
Caroline Louise Walker’s stunning debut novel, for fans of Herman Koch’s The Dinner and Shari Lapena’s The Couple Next Door, delves into the increasingly paranoid mind of a man whose life as the most upstanding of citizens hides a relentlessly dark heart.
Dr. Robert Hart, Sag Harbor’s just-named Man of the Year, is the envy of his friends and neighbors. His medical practice is thriving. He has a beautiful old house and a beautiful new wife and a beautiful boat docked in the village marina. Even his wayward son, Jonah, is back on track, doing well at school, finally worthy of his father’s attentions. So when Jonah’s troubled college roommate, Nick, needs a place to stay for the summer, Hart and his wife generously offer him their guest house. A win-win: Jonah will have someone to hang with, and his father can bask in the warm glow of his own generosity.
But when he begins to notice his new houseguest getting a little too close to his wife, the good doctor’s veneer begins to crack. All the little lies Robert tells—harmless falsehoods meant to protect everything he holds dear—begin to mount. Before long, he’s embroiled in a desperate downward spiral, destroying the lives that stand in his way. It’s only the women in his life—his devoted office manager, his friends, his wife—who can clearly see the truth.
Biting and timely, Man of the Year races along at an electric pace, with a wicked twist that you won’t see coming.
“This is THAT book. You know the one I’m talking about…the one hidden under your teetering should-read, have-to-read, said-I-would-read-months-ago pile. The one you grab at the end of the day because, damnit, you earned this deliciousness, and it reminds you of why you loved reading in the first place. Not only because it’s a blisteringly intelligent, breathtaking debut, drenched with a masterful understanding of human nature, brimming with twists, surprises, suspense and razor sharp language, but because it’s witty and hilarious and also – long lost thing – the book is a blast to read: it’s fun. So go grab a copy and disappear yourself, I’ll understand completely.” — Erica Ferencik, author of The River at Night
Caroline Louise Walker grew up in Rock Island, Illinois. For her fiction and nonfiction, she has received fellowships from The MacDowell Colony, The Kerouac Project, and Jentel Arts. She holds an MA from NYU. Man of the Year is her first novel.