Reviews are flowing in, most of them positive, for The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving by Jonathan Evison (Workman/Algonquin;Highbridge Audio; Thorndike Large Print). Janet Maslin, in today’s NYT, describes the main character as an appealing, nearly 40-year-old loser saddled with a loser’s name, Ben Benjamin, who says of his life, “Look, I didn’t plan any of this. I planned like hell for something else entirely.”

Jennifer Weiner seems to get payback in her review on the NPR Web site. Weiner, along with Jodi Picoult, created a literary furor last year, when in the Huffington Post, they objected to the attention being paid to Jonathan Franzen’s Freedom, pointing out that, “when a man writes about family and feelings, it’s literature with a capital L, but when a woman considers the same topics, it’s romance, or a beach book – in short, it’s something unworthy of a serious critic’s attention.”

She’s not a fan of Fundamentals. “Your enjoyment of the book… will be largely predicated on how much you like listening in on can-you-top-this, gross-out sex talk, and ruefully self-demeaning descriptions of the female of the species.” She does admit, however, that “the writing can be lovely” and that Ben’s relationship with Trevor, the wheelchair-bound young man under his care, “is the strongest section of the book…[as it] blossoms into a thing of strange beauty.”

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