Book Reviews

Midlife Crisis by Rob Rosen at Fierce Publishing

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Romance / Humor/Comedy / Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
Reviewed by Serena Yates on 23-August-2016

Book Blurb

Jack is thirty-five and single once again. He is not, as he as quick to point out, going through a midlife crisis. Still, it would be nice to have a partner, and so he sets out on an adventure to find the one-time love of his life, Bing, a man he hasn’t seen in more than fifteen years, a man who has seemingly vanished off the face of the planet. With the help of his family and friends, not to mention the family dog and his high school bully, he goes searching for Bing, only to unearth an ages-old mystery that puts them all in grave danger. In this hysterically funny tale, the question remains right on up to the surprise ending: can we return to our past in order to better our future?

Book Review

‘Midlife Crisis’ – which, by the way, can’t possibly be the right title for this book since Jack insists that, at thirty-five, he is nowhere near “midlife” – is the hilarious story of a single gay man who is looking for a partner. After an analysis of past boyfriends, he comes to the conclusion that the last time he was really happy and in love was with his first boyfriend, Bing, in high school. But since he and Bing drifted apart, rather than properly breaking up, Jack figures what he needs is closure and all his issues will be magically resolved as soon as he finds Bing. With me so far? Good. That was the easy part.

What follows once Jack sets off on this adventure is not just hilariously funny - which is what I sort of expected from a Rob Rosen book. It is also suspenseful, surprising, thought-provoking, and a beautiful character study of Jack, as well the various very colorful secondary characters who accompany him – more or less willingly – on this journey. There are his parents who are a total hoot, and their dog who is also a character in the truest sense of the word. Of course Jack has a best friend in San Francisco who is happily married and decides to go on a diet. There is Jack’s former high school bully who still lives in his hometown, and whom Jack guilts into helping solve the mystery. Because yes, there is also a dead body, a police cover-up, and more people who refuse to talk about what appears to be a murder than is normal.

Jack is not easily deterred. Finding Bing was the mission he set out on, but finding out who the murderer is and why nobody wants to talk about the case quickly becomes just as important to him. Most of his friends assume that Jack has either got a severe case of the crisis-that-shall-not-be-named or that he has lost his sanity. Jack just can’t leave well enough alone and keeps digging. The solution happens in several stages – making me careen from one surprise to the next. I had several suspicions as to who had done the deed, but none of them were correct. The tension ratchets up and up and up until I thought I knew what was going on – only for Rob to surprise me again with yet another twist. Wonderfully mysterious and very well put-together!

If you like men who struggle with their lot in life and have the courage to get up and do something about it, if you like your murder mysteries to come as a surprise and with a big side order of humor, and if you’re looking for a read that will keep you intrigued from beginning to end as you discover what secrets Jack uncovers in his search for love, then you will probably like this novel as much as I do. Rob Rosen’s unique sense of humor kept me entertained, the cleverly constructed mystery had me on the edge of my seat, and the ending made me shed a happy tear or two. Simply fabulous!





DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by the author for the purpose of a review.

Additional Information

Format ebook and print
Length Novel, 182 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 20-August-2016
Price $3.99 ebook, $9.50 paperback
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