Straight Man is well-written, but…

Straight man pic

Straight Man
by Richard Russo

Rating: ***

After reading Straight Man, I’m left wondering why Richard Russo decided that a university English department would be so interesting to the reading public. And that’s coming from an English Major!

I read Straight Man for my book club and I attended our monthly meeting wondering what my friends would say. They said, “Read Empire Falls. Then you will understand why Russo is so good.” I did and I do, but Straight Man is not a book I would read twice.

Despite this comment, I thought the writing was very good, and Hank Devereaux’s sarcasm and fresh-talk is amusing and easy to read. But the characters and story-line are so crazily far-fetched, goose included, that I could not fit them into the setting and plot. That bothered me. I’m thinking maybe the joke is on me, however, for not giving into this ridiculous story.

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