A Refinery29 Best Book of the Year
The novel that inspired the acclaimed Rebecca Miller film Maggie's Plan, starring Julianne Moore, Ethan Hawke, and Greta Gerwig.
Isabel, Anna, Beth, and Maggie are women who aren’t afraid to take it all. Whether spearheading a pregnancy lingerie company, conspiring to return a husband to his ex-wife, lusting after an old lover while in a satisfying marriage, or trying to balance motherhood and work—they are sexy, determined, and not looking for a simple happily ever after. Through punchy, hilarious, and insightful storytelling, The End of Men shatters the confines of society, and more importantly, those we impose upon ourselves.
“With humor, bravery, and panache, Karen Rinaldi puts her finger straight on the tender conundrum of the female experience, where work, love, and motherhood intersect.” — Rebecca Miller, director of Maggie’s Plan
"Karen Rinaldi's The End of Men is in every way marvelous. A sharply drawn story—or more accurately, stories—that gets everything right. Warm hearted but painfully close to the bone. " —Anthony Bourdain
"In 1995, I wrote a short story, 'Baster,' inspired by some goings-on in my friend Karen Rinaldi's life. In 2003, that story, significantly altered, became the Jennifer Aniston-movie ‘The Switch.’ In 2016, another film, 'Maggie's Plan,' directed by Rebecca Miller, appeared, this time based partly on Rinaldi's unfinished novel about said events. And, now, Rinaldi has finished that novel, creating yet another version, her own version. I knew it was a good idea the first time I heard it, but I had no inkling it would prove quite so fruitful. Given the subject matter, however, how could it be otherwise? Certainly, this is a story that keeps on giving." —Jeffrey Eugenides
Isabel, Anna, Beth, and Maggie are women living in New York City, each at a pivotal crossroads. Isabel is pregnant and loves her husband, but still feels a deep pull towards an old friend. Anna is unhappy with her work-life balance, but can't figure out how to make time to be more present for her husband and two young children. Beth is dealing with the slow decline of her ex-husband and father of her child, who is fighting the AIDS virus, as well as mysterious threats against her business that specializes in lingerie for pregnant and nursing women. And Maggie is realizing that her partner, who left his first wife after an affair with Maggie, is not the man she wants. The four women support one another throughout this year of transition, eventually creating their own versions of balance and contentment. Rinaldi's debut is uneven, with some forced dialogue and excessive exposition that at times distracts from perceptive observations on modern motherhood and womanhood. Though each woman's situation is interesting on its own, the opportunity for exploring the nuances of the relationships is lost with Rinaldi attempting to pack so many characters and story lines into one novel. An entertaining and insightful concept that suffers from rough execution.
I started reading this book and it keeps me reading so far I like it ... I will post another review when I finish it .. but so far is funny and catches the attention of the reader ... I am not very easy to find books that call my attention but this one did so far !