John Dufresne's Love Warps the Mind a Little has everything you want in a novel. It's an engaging story that made me laugh, cry, reflect on life, and, I think, made me a little wiser at its end. This is the kind of good book that keeps me searching for more wonderful reads.
The protagonist of Love Warps the Mind a Little is LaFayette "Laf" Prouix. Laf's wife, Martha, has thrown him out. In his mid-30's, Laf has quit his job as a school teacher to pursue his dream of being a writer, and started an affair with Judy, a therapist. Ousted by Martha, Laf moves in with Judy and tries to sort out his life, including her off-beat family, rejection letters from obscure publications, marriage counseling, and his job at a fast-food restaurant. At first, Laf doesn't seem particularly appealing, but he is funny, observant and, when Judy is diagnosed with ovarian cancer, he demonstrates that he is made of strong stuff. By the stories end, we are cheering for Laf's commitment to carry out his dreams.
Love Warps the Mind a Little is filled with funny, sad, and interesting characters. There is a lot of hope in LaFayette Prouix and a commitment to seize the day. That's a good message from a very enjoyable novel.