My Ex-Life by Stephen McCauley

My Ex-Life

The time for Stephen McCauley's breakout novel has come and My Ex-Life is it in a major way. A delicious novel for fans of Tom Perrotta, Maria Semple, and Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney about how sometimes the only way to move forward is to go back.David Hedges’s life is coming apart at the seams. His job helping San Francisco rich kids get into the colleges of their (parents’) choice is exasperating; his younger boyfriend has left him; and the belo...

Details My Ex-Life

TitleMy Ex-Life
Release DateMay 8th, 2018
PublisherFlatiron Books

Reviews My Ex-Life

  • Anmiryam
    Every year there are at least a few entries into a genre I adore and which I call "Modern Gay Comedy of Manners." Last year I fell for Andrew Sean Greer's delicious and heartwarming Less. This year I'm glad I discovered Stephen McCauley's new book. It's not as sentimental as Greer's book, nor as romantic, but like LESS, it is concerned with the ways in which we reinvent ourselves and forge (or re-forge) families in middle age. In his exploration ...
  • Theresa
    I have decided to not finish this book (DNF). There are too many wonderful books I would like to have time to read rather than subject myself to the feelings created within me as I tried reading this one. Although I really want to give it a low rating, after much contemplation I have decided to simply leave it unrated. Perhaps I will change my mind later. I'm still thinking about it. Full disclosure- I read about 30% and skimmed the rest. I was i...
  • Fred
    This pleasant book about interesting characters in interesting relationships would have earned a higher rating from me had it not been completely ruined for me by the author's undisguised utter loathing of conservatives and religious people, or as he calls them, "religious" people. The first negative comment, a thought that Julie has that her soon-to-be ex-husband may have voted for Mitt Romney as an act of aggression towards her, I chalked up to...
  • Jane
    Thanks to Flatiron books for this ARC.I don't know how to review this since it was just an okay book in my opinion. Nothing exciting happening unless you want to call a teenager living w/her mother and her mother's gay ex-husband from 20 years ago who moves in to help her w/her college prep and ends up staying there permanently to help his ex-wife try to buy the rundown house she lives in. The teenager gets into a predicament with a job and her m...
  • Amina
    ❤ Best book I’ve read so far this year! Okay, so it’s early days of 2018 but this book grabbed me and didn’t let go until the end. LOVE all the characters and perhaps Mandy most of all (though I’m a lot closer to her mother’s age). The book is tender, smart, funny, modern, messy, and felt like an old friend. P.S. I do have some throw pillows... ❤️ Best book I’ve read so far this year! Okay, so it’s early days of 2018 but thi...
  • Jill Meyer
    Stephen McCauley's novels are a rare treat. His new one, "My Ex-Life", is the first he's published in a few years. McCauley gives his readers a gentle but intelligent "comedy of manners", much like Elinor Lipman (who has a new book coming out next winter) and the late, great Laurie Colwin. This book, about a middle-age gay man, David Hedges, who has made a nice life for himself in San Francisco. He's a noted college advisor and has - for San Fran...
  • Angela Johnson
    I was fortunate to win an ARC of this amazing novel. I was sucked into this one pretty quickly. The writing was so fluid and intriguing. I instantly liked the characters. Julie and her weed "not problem," her illegal airbnbing (I didn't even know that could be illegal), her unfaithful, frustrating (though not despicable) ex, and her seemingly wise-beyond-her-years teenage daughter.David is grounded, self-deprecating, and handling upheaval with ap...
  • Michael
    Reading a novel by Stephen McCauley doesn't let you down the way many of the characters in his books let each other down. It's like putting on a worn pair of jeans that fit just perfectly, and are starting to wear at the knees and are so soft and comfortable that you feel better just wearing them. There's something sexy, familiar, and comfortable about the experience. Stephen's latest novel, My Ex-Life is a funny and moving exploration of nostalg...
  • Kate
    Thanks to Flatiron Books for this ARC. I had read Stephen McCauley years ago and then I picked up a copy of one of his novels while on vacation and remembered why I enjoyed him so much. It's the snark and sharp writing as he observes human behavior. While I am not a laugh out loud reader, I thoroughly enjoyed this take on life in the 2010s from the mother trying to hold her life together while giving up a pot habit, the lost daughter trying to ge...
  • Carla Suto
    MY EX-LIFE by Stephen McCauley is a captivating story of unique relationships, unusual situations and second chances in life. The quirky cast of characters captured my attention and kept me interested all the way through. I enjoyed the sharp dialogue, somewhat sarcastic humor and modern look at love, friendship and coming-of-age in today’s society. The story is very well-written and the pace was spot-on for me. There were just enough little twi...
  • Tanya
    The author who wrote the Object of my Affection brings us a novel with lots of laughter, love, struggles and small triumphs. In a nutshell, David is having a midlife crisis when his boyfriend leaves him, his job is overwhelming and the house he rents is getting sold. Across the country his ex-wife Julie is dealing with a divorce while running an illegal Airbnb, dealing with a teenage daughter not wanting to go to college and lastly her weed habit...
  • Marianne Whittaker
    The characters in My Ex-Life are well rounded and beautifully damaged in a way that makes the story seem very real. Time has smoothed the pains of their past and they’ve reached a place of second chances. I really enjoyed the different types of relationships and the writing was fantastic.
  • MomIsReading
    I enjoyed the characters in this one. I do feel the ending was too abrupt and the characters did not develop as deeply as they could have. Overall solid read and some great humor.
  • Jakki
    This book may not be for everyone but I enjoyed the characters and the story. I think it portrayed raw and real emotion and thoughts. I feel like this story would make a good lifetime drama movie. I enjoyed the ending and felt like I had some closure to the story.
  • Diane Perry
    Thank you Flat Iron Books for this gift. I struggled through this book. I liked the character David, but the story for me just dragged. It is funny at times and it will find an audience.
  • Carrie
    A mid-life crisis is the center of this humorous, emotional book by McCauley. This easy, comforting read acts a social commentary at times, which may offend some readers. I, however, adored this book and look forward to reading more from this author.
  • natalie
    I always appreciate winning a book from Goodreads, so thank you Goodreads.I also always try to enter just for books that I think I will like and 90% of the time I do. Somehow, this book just didn't do it for me. I felt like it was very prejudicial writing even though I know it was written as fiction. The storyline was good, but the prejudicial views were not appreciated by me. I am giving honest opinion of this book. I'm sure the writing didn't b...
  • Karen
    Amusing and entertaining on the surface, like a couple gossiping neighbors or a group of catty office workers at the water cooler. McCauley's prose is witty and current.But the underlying message is one of past regrets and the ability to move into the future with hope for better things.Thank you Flatiron for sending this ARC. Review to follow soon. #myexlife
  • Carin
    A grillion years ago I read and loved The Object of My Affection. I don't remember it super-well but I do very much remember that I loved it. And then, I did n't read anything by Stephen McCauley again. I don't recall ever seeing his book anywhere, or hearing about them when they came out. Turns out that despite the wide and mainstream success of OomA (and movie with Jennifer Aniston), his publisher rally pigeonholed him as a gay writer and only ...
  • Tonstant Weader
    My Ex-Life is a great title, a bit of a pun, and a good description of the story. College-application consultant David Hedges is a bit at sixes-and-sevens after his lover left him for a richer man and his landlady decides to sell. Julie Fiske’s life is also in disarray after her husband Henry left her for a younger woman. Now he is making demands, to sell the house and for custody of their daughter Mandy. Meanwhile, Mandy thinks her mom needs a...
  • Patricia
    Stephen McCauley certainly has a way with words; an ability to reword the ordinary and make it extraordinary. He had me chuckling to myself thinking, "Wish I'd said that!" His well-timed humor takes the edge off of the serious problems facing David Hedges, our main character, in the aftermath of the collapse of his once-happy life in San Francisco. Good, solid, likeable David takes the high road where others might resort to revenge and spitefulne...
  • Janis Daly
    I received an Advance Reading Copy of Stephen McCauley’s latest novel, My Ex-Life, ahead of its full release coming in May 2018. The characters and setting immediately drew me into a contemporary telling of the new American family. David Hedges and Julie Fiske are the “exes”, divorced for over twenty years who reconnect and reunite at the prompting of Julie’s daughter, Mandy. Their marriage had dissolved when David finally admitted to his...
  • Susan
    David, in San Francisco is contacted by his ex-wife, Julie, in Massachusetts, and is asked to help her daughter, Mandy work on her college applications. David has recently been left by his boyfriend who has moved on to a wealthier man, and his incredibly below-market-rate cottage house apartment is about to be sold out from under him. He is in need of a change of pace. He arrives at Julie's home to find a big beautiful house, that she is using as...
  • Isabelle
    I seem to be in the minority, but I wasn't particularly crazy about this book. What My Ex-Life does well is engage with American life. McCauley is very observant, and the book contains a fair number of insightful comments about both the monotony of middle-aged life and the inconvenience of change (or maybe more accurately, transition). It also captures with distinct and tender charm the head space around reforming or re-establishing identity and ...
  • Jay bookworm
    Thank you to Flatiron Books for this advance reader copy of the book. As always, I am so excited and honored to be able to read and review a book before it releases. Little did I know what adventure awaited me once I opened the book and entered the lives of David and Julie. The book does make their relationship as a divorced couple so romantic and comfortable. Not romantic in the sexual sense, but understanding each other in a way that so many of...
  • Jill
    My Ex-Life is FULL of contrasting characters, from OCD to hippy and flighty, these characters made me quickly fall into this book. By the end, I was sadly smiling and pleasantly surprised by the enjoyment I found within this easy-to-read book. This book was simply described to me as being about a man who hears from his ex-wife as he himself is struggling through life. He drops everything to fly east and live under the same roof, picking up exactl...
  • Jenee Rager
    Middle aged David has broken up with his younger boyfriend, and is floating through life in San Francisco, with few close friends and an ever expanding waist line. Across the country his ex-wife Julie, whom he hasn't spoken to in 25 years, is also going through a divorce, and trying to raise her teenage daughter while running an Airbnb. When Julie's daughter Mandie, discovers that David not only exists, but that he makes a living coaching high sc...
  • Jamie Shell
    I had never read this author before, so when I received the ARC for my honest review (thank you FlatIron Books) I was curious. If I saw this in the bookstore, the cover would grab my attention and I would be curious about the book itself. this is a story about David, Julie and Mandy--the main characters--and what challenges their 'family' face. They aren't a true family--David is Julie's ex and is gay. I loved the Mandy was the one who convinced ...
  • Grant
    I got this book in a giveaway on Goodreads. It is a contemporary fiction, which, in my experience, tends to mean the worldbuilding is incomplete at best. Authors seem to assume that since their target audience is currently alive, they don't need to set the scene at all. This book almost has the opposite problem. I had no trouble immersing myself in the setting, but it felt at times that the author was trying too hard to include as many recent cul...