Dan McDowell, a thirty-three-year-old portrait photographer happily set to marry his beloved Jane, is stunned when a slip of the tongue about an “ex-girlfriend overlap” of years earlier throws their pending marriage into doubt and him onto the street. Or at least into the second bedroom of their next-door neighbor, Bob, where Dan is sure it won’t be long. It’s long.
His sister, Lucy, further confuses matters with her “soul mate theory” and its suggestion that Jane might not be his… soul mate, that is. But the tipping point comes when his father is struck ill, sparking a chain of events in which Dan discovers a story written by this man he doesn’t readily understand, but who, it seems, has long harbored an unrequited love from decades earlier.
Incapable of fixing his own romantic dilemma, Dan becomes fixated on finding this woman of his father’s dreams and sets off for Oakland, California, on a mission fraught with detours and semi-hilarious peril. Along the way he meets the beautiful Fiona, herbalist and flower child, who assists in his quest while quietly and erotically shaking up his world. When, against all odds, he finds the elusive woman from the past, the ultimate discovery of how she truly fit into his father’s life leaves him staggered, as does the reality of what’s been stirred up with Fiona. But it’s when he returns home to yet another set of unexpected truths that he’s shaken to the core, ultimately forced to face who he is and just whom he might be able to love.
Lorraine Devon Wilke, author of the acclaimed debut novel, After The Sucker Punch, brings her deft mix of humor and drama to a whip-smart narrative told from the point of view of its male protagonist. Hysterical Love explores themes of family, commitment, balancing creativity, facing adulthood, and digging deep to understand the beating heart of true love.
This is aptly named! This novel is HYSTERICAL! Fair warning….do not read this in public. There are places you will laugh out loud!
Dan’s father, Big Jim, has had a stroke. Dan “thinks” he has discovered that Big Jim has a soul mate from his past. Big Jim keeps repeating a phrase which sounds like “Call Barbara.” Well! Dan is determined to find Barbara for his father.
Dan goes above and beyond…however misguided, to find this Barbara, even when his own love life is falling apart. He has separated from his fiancé and is living with his best friend, Bob. Bob needs his own novel. His escapades and his own love life kept me in stitches.
The characters in this tale are a hoot! I love the interaction between Dan and his sister, Lucy. True sibling interactions! And his mother….always wanting her dish back! 😂. But, my all time favorite is the tow truck driver! You have to read this to find out.
The only issue I had with this book is it is a little long. It could have been shortened by a few pages or three. But, it is so dang cute! This is a story about love. All kinds of love! Family, friendship, and soul-mate love…it’s all in here. It is told with such creativity and uniqueness. Perfect read for a trip.