Man of the Year
A sinister, sophisticated debut thriller by “a remarkable new voice to watch” (J.T. Ellison, New York Times bestselling author), Man of the Year has been lauded by Shelf Awareness as “an impressive slow burn that builds suspense and cracks the whip at the end…redolent with menace and ego.”Dr. Robert Hart, Sag Harbor’s just-named Man of the Year, is the envy of his friends and neighbors. His medical practice is thriving. He has a beautiful old house and a beautiful new wife and a beautiful boat docked in the village marina. Even his wayward son, Jonah, is back on track, doing well at school and finally worthy of his father’s attentions. So when Jonah’s troubled college roommate needs a place to stay for the summer, Hart and his wife generously offer him their guesthouse. A win-win: Jonah will have someone to hang with, and his father can bask in the warm glow of his own generosity. But when Robert suspects his new houseguest of getting a little too close to his wife, the good doctor’s veneer begins to crack, and all the little lies he tells start to mount. Before long, Robert is embroiled in a desperate downward spiral, threatening to destroy anyone who stands in his way. It’s only the women in his life—his devoted office manager, his friends and neighbors, his wife—who can reveal the truth…if he’s willing to look. Biting and timely, Man of the Year races along at an electric pace, building to a wicked twist you won’t see coming.

Man of the Year Details

TitleMan of the Year
Author
ReleaseAug 4th, 2020
PublisherGallery Books
ISBN-139781982100469
Rating
GenreFiction, Thriller, Mystery, Suspense, Mystery Thriller

Man of the Year Review

  • Elyse Walters
    January 1, 1970
    ....Trust no one. ....Everyone is telling lies ....There is an accident - or ‘perhaps’ a crime. ....What’s the right choice to make?...,What’s the new ‘right’ choice to make? ....Who is protecting who? Chew on this: “Could it be that everything I’ve done—the hard work and the love, the steps forward, the backlash, all the bitter ends and bright ideas - has been wasted?” This book was crazy enjoyable. One of my favorite excerpts - almost a monologue- which I’d love to share - but sorry - cannot d ....Trust no one. ....Everyone is telling lies ....There is an accident - or ‘perhaps’ a crime. ....What’s the right choice to make?...,What’s the new ‘right’ choice to make? ....Who is protecting who? Chew on this: “Could it be that everything I’ve done—the hard work and the love, the steps forward, the backlash, all the bitter ends and bright ideas - has been wasted?” This book was crazy enjoyable. One of my favorite excerpts - almost a monologue- which I’d love to share - but sorry - cannot do - is so powerful - sooo truthful - I ‘paused’.....read it again - read it to my husband - (thinking about the brilliant ‘background insight) ...but I forgot about ‘this —awesome-awareness moment’ .....in relation to the overall story...I thought I knew a ‘small’ part of the ending early on...but doubted myself on and off... One thing is for certain - I had no idea how the ending (even with my gut red flag moment), would be ‘packaged’. Great balls of fire fun!!!! Thank you for the great pleasure enjoyment...Netgalley, Gallery Books, and Caroline Louise Walter
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  • Julie
    January 1, 1970
    Man of the Year by Caroline Louise Walker is a 2019 Gallery Books publication. A twisty examination of the long lasting repercussions of infidelity –By all accounts, Dr. Robert Hart is a confident and productive member of society. He has just received a prestigious award, has a successful career, friends, a big house, a boat, and his beautiful wife, Elizabeth.But every family has its hidden instabilities. For Robert and Elizabeth, it is the stigma of building a marriage upon a foundation of infi Man of the Year by Caroline Louise Walker is a 2019 Gallery Books publication. A twisty examination of the long lasting repercussions of infidelity –By all accounts, Dr. Robert Hart is a confident and productive member of society. He has just received a prestigious award, has a successful career, friends, a big house, a boat, and his beautiful wife, Elizabeth.But every family has its hidden instabilities. For Robert and Elizabeth, it is the stigma of building a marriage upon a foundation of infidelity. They were both married to other people when their relationship began, but after divorcing their respective spouses, they married. Now, after a decade, their marriage appears to be a stable one. However, Robert’s son from his first marriage, Jonah, was the collateral damage in Robert’s decision to leave his family for Elizabeth. For years, Jonah has been resentful and aimless, and naturally feels uncomfortable around his stepmother. But things are finally looking up. Jonah is staying with Robert and Elizabeth for the summer and he has even brought a friend along with him. Nick’s parents are both dead, and with no other big plans on the horizon, he readily accepts Elizabeth’s invitation to stay for the entire summer with Jonah. However, Robert is not so keen on that idea. He’s jealous of Nick, believing he has designs on his wife. Not only that, Elizabeth seems to bask in the glow of his attentions. And why not? After all, she did cheat on her first husband with Robert, didn’t she? Robert’s paranoia, once it has taken root, knows no bounds, as he plots to nudge Nick out his home under the pretext of saving his family. Oh, what a tangled web we weave…What a twisted little story this is!! Infidelity and the mistrust all that implies is at the heart of this story. Robert’s actions are based on deeply buried suspicions about Elizabeth, his guilty conscience about his son’s struggles, and his supreme arrogance and insecurities. Once the lies and machinations begin, there is a tragic snowball effect, raising the stakes even higher, as Robert could lose everything, including his career. I thought this story was clever, although most readers will figure out a few of the twists in advance. That’s not really an issue for me in this case, as the dark humor in the story was rich and quite delicious. This book is packed with morally bankrupt characters, some hoping to cash in on an unexpected opportunity, while others are laying well concealed traps. The fun is in trying to decipher which one is worse than the other and watching it all play out in the most bizarre way imaginable. How will you judge these characters? Will you believe the worst about them or give them the benefit of the doubt, or condemn them all? This is a dark character driven mystery, and even a little addicting. A good book to pack with you for a day at the beach. 4 stars
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  • Felicia
    January 1, 1970
    This is one of those books that are nearly impossible to review because nothing I say will do it justice so I will begin with...THIS BOOK IS SIMPLY MAGNIFICENT.The crux of this story is Caroline Louise Walker's writing. Period. This is among the best prose from a debut author that I have seen in some time. Walker has woven an intricate plot featuring a complex and utterly engrossing protagonist, Dr Robert Hart.Robert suspects his wife is cheating and he sets on a paranoid course of self destruct This is one of those books that are nearly impossible to review because nothing I say will do it justice so I will begin with...THIS BOOK IS SIMPLY MAGNIFICENT.The crux of this story is Caroline Louise Walker's writing. Period. This is among the best prose from a debut author that I have seen in some time. Walker has woven an intricate plot featuring a complex and utterly engrossing protagonist, Dr Robert Hart.Robert suspects his wife is cheating and he sets on a paranoid course of self destruction. The lengths he goes to in order to satisfy his own suspicions while desperately trying to hold together his house of cards family is disquieting at best."The beautiful things that grow from decay can make it awfully hard to leave the garden."This is a subtle story, told almost entirely in the mind of Robert. Walker has written this character with such acuity I felt like I was on the inside of him looking out. No longer a spectator, I found myself seeing life through Robert's eyes. This isn't a thriller so much as it is a study of character(s). So, if the stereotypical twister is what you're anticipating then I suspect that you, like myself, will be bowled over by the ability of masterful storytelling combined with an insidious plot to keep you on the edge of your seat, mouth agape. I'm not giving anything away when I say that the ending is irony personified and it is sublime!Fantastic debut. Count me in for everything to come from this author.I received an ARC from Gallery Books in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    Dr. Robert (Bobby) Hart, Man of the Year recipient, the envy of all in his community. He's married to his 2nd wife, Elizabeth, whose beauty knows no bounds. Of course, it should be known that their relationship began while both were married to other people. Infidelity, being the most hurtful of all betrayals, but yet they've managed to make their relationship work over the last ten years. Bobby's 20 year old son, Jonah, has decided to spend his summer with them for the very first time which is a Dr. Robert (Bobby) Hart, Man of the Year recipient, the envy of all in his community. He's married to his 2nd wife, Elizabeth, whose beauty knows no bounds. Of course, it should be known that their relationship began while both were married to other people. Infidelity, being the most hurtful of all betrayals, but yet they've managed to make their relationship work over the last ten years. Bobby's 20 year old son, Jonah, has decided to spend his summer with them for the very first time which is a sign that old resentments may be mending. Jonah's friend Nick has also come along and is invited to spend the summer in their guest house. "Beware the Man of the Year. You may praise him, resent him, even want to be him: but beneath the elegant trappings that define him, danger looms." What happens when Man of the Year suspects that his faithful wife and his sons young, handsome, and virile friend appear to be having an affair? "The nerve. My God. The recklessness. My power simmers and shines, daring me to fight for this precious life I've built. For Christ's sake, Bobby, take a stand." When a relationship begins on infidelity I suppose it would be hard to overlook flirtatious smiles and coy glances especially when they aren't aimed at you but at someone much more youthful. Bobby let's his blood boil and his imagination run away with him and what a hoot it is to witness. I probably should have hated this guy but I didn't and I have no idea what that says about me. With so many lies being spun who is telling the truth? You'll have to read it to find out! Walkers' writing is on point and I am stunned that this is her first novel. She's made a fan of me! 4 stars! Thank you to NetGalley and Gallery Books for providing me with a digital ARC in exchange for my honest review.
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  • Kaceey
    January 1, 1970
    3.5*Dr. Robert Hart has it all. A successful career and a new, young beautiful wife. When his son Jonah comes home he’s accompanied by his strikingly good looking friend Nick. Does the good doctor have any reason for concern? Nonsense, his wife wouldn’t actually cheat on him...would she?I loved being a fly on the wall witnessing the unraveling of the Man of The Year. Caroline Louise Walker writes a crafty thriller filled with delusion, paranoia and lies. None of the characters are very likable.. 3.5*Dr. Robert Hart has it all. A successful career and a new, young beautiful wife. When his son Jonah comes home he’s accompanied by his strikingly good looking friend Nick. Does the good doctor have any reason for concern? Nonsense, his wife wouldn’t actually cheat on him...would she?I loved being a fly on the wall witnessing the unraveling of the Man of The Year. Caroline Louise Walker writes a crafty thriller filled with delusion, paranoia and lies. None of the characters are very likable...some downright despicable. But for this book it worked perfectly!This is a good solid read, though somewhat predictable but still sure to entertain you.A buddy read with Susanne!Thank you to Jessica Roth at Gallery Books via NetGalley and Caroline Louise Walker for an ARC to read and review.
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  • Susanne Strong
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 Stars (rounded down)Paranoia! Oh What it does to a Man! What happens when you start suspecting your spouse of cheating? Do you confront them immediately or do you start trying to gather evidence without saying a word? What happens if the person you suspect them of cheating with, is younger, more attractive and extremely virile? What measures would you go to? Turns out some people are the jealous type! Just ask Dr. Robert (“Bobby”) Hart. After just having received the “Man of the Year” award 3.5 Stars (rounded down)Paranoia! Oh What it does to a Man! What happens when you start suspecting your spouse of cheating? Do you confront them immediately or do you start trying to gather evidence without saying a word? What happens if the person you suspect them of cheating with, is younger, more attractive and extremely virile? What measures would you go to? Turns out some people are the jealous type! Just ask Dr. Robert (“Bobby”) Hart. After just having received the “Man of the Year” award by the citizens of Sag Harbor, you think he’d be on top of the world. He has a thriving medical practice, a gorgeous wife and is the envy of many. Then his son Jonah and Jonah’s best friend, Nick come for the summer. Suspicions arise once Bobby notices how much his wife Elizabeth and Nick have in common. Sitting by and doing nothing isn’t exactly an option once Bobby’s blood starts boiling. “Man of the Year” is a character study of one man’s downward spiral detailing exactly how paranoia can destroy a person. Bobby sure is a hoot and a half. Despicable, yes, and yet, you can’t tear your eyes away. I’m pretty sure (ok, I am sure) that not everyone acts the way he does when they have the same suspicions. That being said, this sure makes for one heck of an entertaining read! “Man of the Year” is a slow burn. You feel Bobby’s angst and the sickness that dwells within him once jealousy takes hold. This is a character study, not a true suspense novel and the thrill is in Caroline Louise Walker’s writing. This was another buddy read with Kaceey!Thank you to Jessica Roth at Gallery Books, NetGalley and Caroline Louise Walker for an arc of this novel in exchange for an honest review.Published on Goodreads and NetGalley on 4.24.19.Will be published on Amazon on 6.11.19.
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  • Carol
    January 1, 1970
    First, Do No Harm.......right. Recognized as MAN OF THE YEAR in his community, Dr. Robert Hart lives the good life, has a hot wife....who flaunts her stuff, a 20 year old son Jonah from his first marriage who comes to stay as well as his friend Nick who resides in the guest house. But, MAN OF THE YEAR Dr. Hart is not perfect by any means, nor is his family, or any of his friends; not even his office manager. MAN OF THE YEAR is made up of cheaters, liars, blackmailers and jealous suspicious minds First, Do No Harm.......right. Recognized as MAN OF THE YEAR in his community, Dr. Robert Hart lives the good life, has a hot wife....who flaunts her stuff, a 20 year old son Jonah from his first marriage who comes to stay as well as his friend Nick who resides in the guest house. But, MAN OF THE YEAR Dr. Hart is not perfect by any means, nor is his family, or any of his friends; not even his office manager. MAN OF THE YEAR is made up of cheaters, liars, blackmailers and jealous suspicious minds that can be deadly. Good debut for Caroline Louise Walker! ***Arc provided by Gallery, Pocket Books via NetGalley in exchange for review***
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  • Theresa Alan
    January 1, 1970
    This was a tough one for me because I had a really hard time getting through the first half since I hated the primary narrator Robert so much. So I read the reviews on Goodreads, which were pretty glowing, and thus I persevered. I liked the second half of this novel much more than the first half, in part because different narrators shared their accounts of events. Thanks to NetGalley for the opportunity to review this book, which RELEASES JUNE 11, 2019. For more reviews, please visit http://www. This was a tough one for me because I had a really hard time getting through the first half since I hated the primary narrator Robert so much. So I read the reviews on Goodreads, which were pretty glowing, and thus I persevered. I liked the second half of this novel much more than the first half, in part because different narrators shared their accounts of events. Thanks to NetGalley for the opportunity to review this book, which RELEASES JUNE 11, 2019. For more reviews, please visit http://www.theresaalan.net/blog
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  • Carol (Bookaria)
    January 1, 1970
    Dark, compelling, engrossing. I started reading this book and was absolutely captivated by the characters.It opens up with a celebration, an event honoring Robert Hart, M.D. for his contributions to the community he lives in, he has been named MAN OF THE YEAR. His son (Jonah) and the son's best friend (Nick) are spending the summer with Dr. Hart and his wife, but soon Dr. Hart starts feeling uncomfortable by the looks twenty-years old Nick is exchanging with his beautiful wife.The story is narra Dark, compelling, engrossing. I started reading this book and was absolutely captivated by the characters.It opens up with a celebration, an event honoring Robert Hart, M.D. for his contributions to the community he lives in, he has been named MAN OF THE YEAR. His son (Jonah) and the son's best friend (Nick) are spending the summer with Dr. Hart and his wife, but soon Dr. Hart starts feeling uncomfortable by the looks twenty-years old Nick is exchanging with his beautiful wife.The story is narrated by different characters and this is the strength of the novel, the characters' well drawn voices. What happens as the story progresses is enthralling, at some point it was like watching a train wreck collide with another train wreck and you just can't stop watching it, or reading, in my case. Chilling endingOverall, I enjoyed it, it was dark, entertaining, and engaging. Highly recommend it to readers of thrillers and contemporary fiction. Received ARC from the publisher via Netgalley
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  • Carrie
    January 1, 1970
    Man of the Year by Caroline Louise Walker is one of those books that has a completely unlikable/unreliable narrator in Dr. Robert Hart who has just become Sag Harbor’s Man of the Year as we join his story. Now as unlikable as Bobby is he may just run a few readers off before the story actually picks up on uncovering the secrets and lies.On the outside looking in our Man of the Year has one of those wonderful, much envied lives with a beautiful new young wife, a son from a previous marriage and a Man of the Year by Caroline Louise Walker is one of those books that has a completely unlikable/unreliable narrator in Dr. Robert Hart who has just become Sag Harbor’s Man of the Year as we join his story. Now as unlikable as Bobby is he may just run a few readers off before the story actually picks up on uncovering the secrets and lies.On the outside looking in our Man of the Year has one of those wonderful, much envied lives with a beautiful new young wife, a son from a previous marriage and a thriving business. However, of course we find all is not perfect behind closed doors as Bobby seems to think something may be going on between his wife and his college aged son’s friend that she invited to stay despite his protests.Some may call this a thriller but it’s more along the lines of suspense or domestic drama that dives into the lives of these characters. The second half picks up the pace a bit more than the first and while some some things seemed a bit predictable other twists were more surprising so if one can overlook the pompous narrator this one turned into a solid read I’d rate at 3 1/2 stars.I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley.For more reviews please visit https://carriesbookreviews.com/
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  • Chelsea Humphrey
    January 1, 1970
    3-3.5 STARSMan of the Year is a character study of one really unlikable fellow and his erratic response to the assumption that his wife is connecting in a sensual way with their son's best friend, Nick. This will be a hit or miss for some folks, as Bobby is a SUPER unlikable character, but I found it kind of fun following along with his over-the-top narrative. Make no mistake, this is most definitely a character study, and not a thriller, but there is a vein of suspense that builds very slowly o 3-3.5 STARSMan of the Year is a character study of one really unlikable fellow and his erratic response to the assumption that his wife is connecting in a sensual way with their son's best friend, Nick. This will be a hit or miss for some folks, as Bobby is a SUPER unlikable character, but I found it kind of fun following along with his over-the-top narrative. Make no mistake, this is most definitely a character study, and not a thriller, but there is a vein of suspense that builds very slowly over the course of the novel. A fun read, and a nice debut from an author we are sure to hear more from in the coming years.*Many thanks to the publisher for providing my review copy via NetGalley.
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  • Denise
    January 1, 1970
    I must say thank you to the corona quarantine for helping me get through my huge stack of TBR books. Man of the Year was one of those books that had been sitting around for quite some time, and I finally picked it up and ended up being pleasantly surprised by how much I thoroughly enjoyed it! This is a debut work by Caroline Louise Walker, and her writing style is impressive. She writes in a way that is very visual and her characters are so well-developed that I found myself taking on all the va I must say thank you to the corona quarantine for helping me get through my huge stack of TBR books. Man of the Year was one of those books that had been sitting around for quite some time, and I finally picked it up and ended up being pleasantly surprised by how much I thoroughly enjoyed it! This is a debut work by Caroline Louise Walker, and her writing style is impressive. She writes in a way that is very visual and her characters are so well-developed that I found myself taking on all the various characters' insecurities and paranoia. It was the type of book that when I wasn't reading it, I was thinking about getting back to it. When the book opens, Dr. Robert Hart is at a gala receiving the Sag Harbor Man of the Year award. He truly has it all: a thriving medical practice, a dream home, a beautiful wife of ten years, etc. His son, Jonah, who went through a rough patch as a pre-teen/teen when his parents divorced, is now in college and doing well. Things are seemingly perfect. So when Jonah brings his new college friend, Nick, home with him for a few days, it is not a big deal to Robert. Soon though, Robert comes to the conclusion that Nick is having an affair with his wife, Elizabeth (I thought here is where Walker shined - she brought out Robert's suspicions beautifully via innuendos he perceives in watching the interaction between the two). It all goes downhill for Robert from here, and his spiral is swift and all-consuming. I found Robert's character rather intriguing. He is one hundred percent an ego-driven man whose entire sense of self is threatened by seemingly everyone around him - and yet, I kind of liked him. The rest of the characters are complex and you don't ever fully get a read on what is going on in their heads, which works very well in regard to the storyline. The only flaw is in the formatting. The book is told from Robert's POV; however, every few chapters there would be a first-person account from another minor (very secondary) character, and I felt like those chapters just weren't relevant and actually took away from the narrative flow (i.e. Raymond - his character was extremely confusing to me!) The ending is somewhat of an enigma as well. It was not what I was expecting (in the least), and I kind of liked it, and I kind of hated it. It made me think, though, and that is never a bad thing! Overall, this is not a psychological thriller, so if that is what you are expecting, you may be disappointed, but that being said, it is a domestic suspense at its very best. 4 quirky stars for this one!
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  • Monika Sadowski
    January 1, 1970
    Out of control, jealous husband, beautiful wife and young summer house guest. Sounds good to me. In this suspend thriller I also experienced some twists and turns which made me read this story with a big curiosity. Good writing.Thank you to NetGalley and publisher for a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
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  •  Li'l Owl
    January 1, 1970
    This book just wasn't for me but I stuck with it and I'm glad I did! Overall 3★'s.I'd like to mention that I really like the unique cover!I fold the questionnaire and slip it into my lab coat pocket and head back to Exam Room Four, where I take a seat at the corner desk, crossing my legs, propping up my clipboard so Nick can’t see the blank page. I glance at my patient— my violator: hazardous waste—whose vulnerability is almost worth my pity. I see him clearly: the object of my wife’s desire . T This book just wasn't for me but I stuck with it and I'm glad I did! Overall 3★'s.I'd like to mention that I really like the unique cover!I fold the questionnaire and slip it into my lab coat pocket and head back to Exam Room Four, where I take a seat at the corner desk, crossing my legs, propping up my clipboard so Nick can’t see the blank page. I glance at my patient— my violator: hazardous waste—whose vulnerability is almost worth my pity. I see him clearly: the object of my wife’s desire . The sum total of her temptation: six foot, one-hundred-sixty pounds, BMI of twenty-one, no allergies, occasional hiccups, insomnia, regular exercise. Spoiled rotten with the passive riches of youth. The love of my life would betray me for this.The anvil slams into my chest: the ache I’ve been avoiding, delayed by mantras and plans and an army of hypotheticals. Here he is, a terrorist in a cotton gown, holding his breath awaiting negative, secretly imagining positive, quietly burning. He is at my mercy. I could kill him or I could cry.********I always do my best to write my honest thoughts and feelings about a book, especially when the publishers and authors who approve my request to read an advanced copy of the book through NetGalley. What I didn't like. I had to really try hard to stick with Man of the Year by Caroline Louise Walker.I struggled with the self centered, insecure, immature, paranoid, despicable Dr. Hart, AKA 'Man of the Year' and I'm wondering just how he even qualified for the 'Man of the Year' award, nevermind win it. The overall pettiness most of the characters really grated on my nerves and I was left with the feeling that there were too many continuous lies flying around that the story to seemed to stall out, not going anywhere. What I liked... The pace picked up a quite a lot near the halfway point and once the story got rolling I was completely drawn in and I had to find out how it ended! In fairness to the author, she did an excellent job of creating Dr. Robert Hart and the other distasteful characters. After all, they were meant to be that way or the reason for the story itself wouldn't make much sense. I have to say that Caroline Louise Walker did a bang up job selling character's personalities to fit the meaning of the conclusion perfectly! I'm not sure if that makes any sense but there it is. In the end I'm glad I stuck with it as it was worth the effort when the surprising conclusion was revealed. I think I'm correct in saying that this is Caroline Louise Walker's first novel and I won't rule out reading another of her books if she writes any more. With Thanks and appreciation to NetGalley, Gallery Books, and Caroline Louise Walker for this advanced digital copy to read and review.
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  • Stephanie
    January 1, 1970
    Don’t expect Man of the Year to be a mystery or thriller because it’s not. Instead, the novel is literary suspense thanks to the way Caroline Louise Walker masterfully captured the inner nature of Dr. Robert Hart, Sag Harbor’s newest Citizen of the Year. Instead of being action or plot-driven, it’s intelligently character driven from page one, and that makes it a compellingly different read than you might expect.Her debut novel is a beguiling character study of Bobby as we’re taken deep into his Don’t expect Man of the Year to be a mystery or thriller because it’s not. Instead, the novel is literary suspense thanks to the way Caroline Louise Walker masterfully captured the inner nature of Dr. Robert Hart, Sag Harbor’s newest Citizen of the Year. Instead of being action or plot-driven, it’s intelligently character driven from page one, and that makes it a compellingly different read than you might expect.Her debut novel is a beguiling character study of Bobby as we’re taken deep into his mind and get to see what makes him the man he is through inner monologues that reveal just how egocentric and paranoid he is, which quickly leads to tragedy and his downward spiral.He suddenly begins to look at Elizabeth, his beautiful, desirable 2nd wife whom he married after they both left their spouses, in a different light once he sees her giving attention (harmless? motherly? sensual?) to his son Jonah’s college friend, Nick.Bobby is convinced Nick has another motive for agreeing to be their houseguest for the summer other than the fact his mother died from ALS and his father committed suicide, so he really has no family. Could it really be so simple that he wants to be part of their family? Or is it as Bobby suspects and the handsome young man wants his wife? Can Bobby even trust Elizabeth? Should he trust her since she’s cheated before?Walker also exposes the innermost secrets, troubles, and struggles of Elizabeth and Jonah until it’s obvious that everyone in this novel is lying about something―no one in this book is reliable, but that is the fun! Bobby, especially, is very unlikeable almost to the extreme.This is a slow burning novel. The suspense builds up slowly and culminates in an ending that was wickedly twisted and highly entertaining.Walker’s well-written, vivid prose and complex characters really makes this novel stand out, and they’re the reason why I bumped up my rating by .5 stars. I enjoyed Man of the Year; it’s a fascinating debut by Walker, and I look forward to her future novels.**Thank you, Jessica Roth, at Gallery Books for a gifted finished copy of this novel. All opinions are my own.**
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  • Krystin Rachel
    January 1, 1970
    Book Blog | BookstagramOpening Hook: Stroke your ego more than three times, you’re just playing with yourself.Main Character: Douchebag of the YearPlot Twisty-ness: Straight fall from the roof.I didn’t really love this. It’s kind of boring??? There were moments of intrigue and it’s unlike anything I’ve read recently, but it really didn’t live up to the hype I saw online for it.Now before you decide to add some salty comment to let me know I’m a bitch, just remember that 1. I already know that, a Book Blog | BookstagramOpening Hook: Stroke your ego more than three times, you’re just playing with yourself.Main Character: Douchebag of the YearPlot Twisty-ness: Straight fall from the roof.I didn’t really love this. It’s kind of boring??? There were moments of intrigue and it’s unlike anything I’ve read recently, but it really didn’t live up to the hype I saw online for it.Now before you decide to add some salty comment to let me know I’m a bitch, just remember that 1. I already know that, and 2. My reviews aren’t personal indictments against other readers. I’m just saying that for me, Man of the Year by Caroline Louise Walker was just alright. It was meh. I liked it a reasonable amount for a thing that was just okay.Certainly, my opinion is going to fall way below all of the THIS IS THE MOST MAGNIFICENT BOOK TO EVER BOOK reviews that are posted. I’m going to land somewhere in the “most okay-est thing to ever mediocre” category.My expectation was that this was going to be more of a sinister thriller with a cunning anti-hero at the helm of the POV, but it just ended up being a character study about an unlikable, mostly boring narcissist, his untrustworthy family and shallow relationships. But that’s very on-trend for the last couple of years, isn’t it?The reader is invited underneath the perfectly crafted veneer that is Dr. Robert Hart’s life after he wins his town’s prestigious “Man of the Year” award. As it turns out, despite meticulously crafted appearances for outsiders, Hart is actually a giant turd of a human being.He reminded me of a local-level Trump, except less name-calling like a certain orange man-toddler.Hart is only concerned with what everyone thinks of him; keeping up appearances is the most important task, all day, er’ry day. By default, that means his relationships are shallow and delicate in terms of loyalty and trust. He requires everyone to think he’s the best in his career field, that he has the most gorgeous home, an enviable relationship with his teenage son and the hottest wife that everyone wants to fuck. Without that, he can’t seem to derive happiness from anything and has no idea who he is.And honestly, despite reading a whole novel about him, I don’t know who he really is either, other than a shit bag.When you place importance on such superficial things, and never care to cultivate strong relationships grounded in honesty and vulnerability, it’s quite easy to become paranoid and to never truly feel safe within the life you’re curating for others. And thus, Hart starts to lose his rich white guy marbles.When Hart’s teenage son invites his friend Nick to stay with them for the summer, Hart eventually suspects Nick is sleeping with his super hot second wife, Elizabeth. And then a tragedy happens and Hart desperately tries to keep his house of cards from tumbling down. The whole book is Hart racing (I’m using that verb loosely) around putting out one self-made fire after another without his family’s secrets becoming public, while also trying to weed through his own lies and those of his family.This is definitely a slow-burner of a novel, but also it’s not really building up to anything that I found especially exciting in the end. There is some suspense laced throughout the plot as Hart attempts to cover his own ass and determine exactly what happened to Nick, but overall I think this has a super flat and lifeless vibe.Living within Hart’s self-centred head didn’t create much room for character development of anyone else in the novel, everything exists within Hart’s experiences, and so I didn’t have a connection to them or the parts they played within the plot. Their emotions and motivations were non-existent because only Hart existed, and that made things feel very one-dimensional.Hart himself is just a terrible character to have to ride with for a whole novel. I’d rather not be in the head of a douche-canoe Trump-like character for that long, honestly. I’m completely burnt out on assholes.The twists of the lies, secrets and miscommunications between Hart and the people in his life existed to build tension and suspense, but it was all pretty mundane stuff. Maybe that’s because I’ve become so desensitized by thriller novels at this point that I need a bigger hit to really feel the high. Either way, it was just too quiet a novel for my tastes. There was clearly an intention to build a sense of insidious danger and immorality that was meant to keep the reader hooked, but that never landed with me.Caroline Louise Walker is not a bad writer, in fact, the only thing that really saved me from falling asleep numerous times was Walker’s prose. I think for the right reader, this is a book that will worm its way into your head and keep you on edge, but for me, it was dull. The main character was just too awful to be stuck with for as long as I was, it took too long to get to the meat of the plot; the ending was dragged out and the final revelation fizzled for me where it really should have crackled.Definitely not a thriller, but maybe you’re into that kind of thing.⭐⭐½ | 2.5 stars rounded up
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  • Dianne
    January 1, 1970
    Oh, the webs we weave…Meet the Man of the Year, the man who has it all, prestige, respect, a trophy wife and a seemingly perfect life, but what happens when he begins to believe he is more than a mere man? What happens when his picture perfect concept of his world begins to unravel all around him, when all of the warts begin to grow, to show and his own ego works against him? Will he become like a paranoid Humpty Dumpty, shattering into a million pieces?MAN OF THE YEAR by Caroline Louise Walker Oh, the webs we weave…Meet the Man of the Year, the man who has it all, prestige, respect, a trophy wife and a seemingly perfect life, but what happens when he begins to believe he is more than a mere man? What happens when his picture perfect concept of his world begins to unravel all around him, when all of the warts begin to grow, to show and his own ego works against him? Will he become like a paranoid Humpty Dumpty, shattering into a million pieces?MAN OF THE YEAR by Caroline Louise Walker is the story of a man who believed he was above the rest, only to find he was wrong and his fall was ugly, very ugly and far too common for a man like him. Dr. Robert Hart, the man is not the Dr. Robert Hart, The Man of the Year. He is a hypocrite, an egomaniac, a man you love to hate on so many levels, a man with little love to give everyone left after giving it to the man in the mirror.Caroline Louise Walker has created a magnetic read filled with characters that lack that necessary component that makes them truly likable, but they do feel real, and she has done an amazing feat in bringing their twisted story to life as we are witness to the implosion of a man, a family and the façade the world saw.Gritty, dark and filled with lies, beware the truth when it is revealed.I received a complimentary ARC edition from Gallery Books!Publisher: Gallery Books (June 11, 2019)Publication Date: June 11, 2019Genre: Psychological SuspensePrint Length: 304 pagesAvailable from: Amazon | Barnes & NobleFor Reviews, Giveaways, Fabulous Book News, follow: http://tometender.blogspot.com
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  • Jypsy
    January 1, 1970
    Man Of The Year is a wow kind of story. As in, wow didn't see that coming! It's a story about a very successful man coming unraveled. His downward spiral pulls you into its trap of paranoia, narcissistic mayhem and twisted creepiness. The story is so engrossing and well written that you'll be forced to keep reading. It's hard to put this book down. Truly enjoyed this one. Thanks to NetGalley for an arc in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Jamie Rosenblit
    January 1, 1970
    Man of the Year is a thriller with a bit of a domino effect - Dr. Robert Hart’s paranoia has gotten the best of him. Bobby is convinced his son’s best friend Nick, who is currently staying with him and his wife and son in their posh Hamptons home is having an affair with his wife, Elizabeth. Given that Bobby and Elizabeth were both married to others when they fell in love, Bobby fears the worst. Acting on this paranoia causes Bobby to behave more than suspiciously of Nick & Elizabeth, setting of Man of the Year is a thriller with a bit of a domino effect - Dr. Robert Hart’s paranoia has gotten the best of him. Bobby is convinced his son’s best friend Nick, who is currently staying with him and his wife and son in their posh Hamptons home is having an affair with his wife, Elizabeth. Given that Bobby and Elizabeth were both married to others when they fell in love, Bobby fears the worst. Acting on this paranoia causes Bobby to behave more than suspiciously of Nick & Elizabeth, setting off the domino effect with irreparable consequences. Man of the Year held my attention the whole way - told from Bobby’s perspective while we get single chapters from other characters interspersed among Bobby’s, makes for an interesting storytelling device. However, the ending just fell flat for me. In a suspense novel, unfortunately the end can be a bit of a make it or break it and in this case I was disappointed. Maybe I’ve read too many thrillers and someone else who’s less saturated in this genre will appreciate it more than me. Thank you to Gallery Books for an advanced copy. All opinions are my own.
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  • Nenia ⚔️ Queen of Villainy ⚔️ Campbell
    January 1, 1970
    As someone whose personal brand could be summed up as "writes hot guys who are actually psychos," this book is Relevant to My Interests.
  • Seema Rao
    January 1, 1970
    Engrossing~ Surprising ~ Satisfyingtl;dr: Perfection almost always hides cracksWOW. I was impressed by this book. Until this minute, I hadn't realized the author was a woman. Given most of the book is interior monologue of a man, that is amazing. In this story, a man with an enviable life sees things unravels and acts accordingly (or not, depending on your point of view). I don't usually read books with Alpha/ achiever males as the protagonist. But, I am glad I read this. The plotting is wonderf Engrossing~ Surprising ~ Satisfyingtl;dr: Perfection almost always hides cracksWOW. I was impressed by this book. Until this minute, I hadn't realized the author was a woman. Given most of the book is interior monologue of a man, that is amazing. In this story, a man with an enviable life sees things unravels and acts accordingly (or not, depending on your point of view). I don't usually read books with Alpha/ achiever males as the protagonist. But, I am glad I read this. The plotting is wonderful. The writing is crisp. This book would be a wonderful book club book. So much to discuss about masculinity, wealth, privilege, success, toxic masculinity...and well, those kind of guys. It's hard for me to review this without showing my hand (in terms of knowing the ending/ story). So, just listen to me, trust me, you want to read this one. It's good, fast, and enjoyable. Also, you don't want to be the main character, at least I don't.
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  • Author Annabelle Leigha
    January 1, 1970
    I figured out part of it then it turns out it was all a LIE!!!! I'm totally buying this one for my library!!! As good as Ms. Constantine!
  • Marti
    January 1, 1970
    So stinking twisty I never saw many of the twists coming. Highly recommend!!!
  • Erin (from Long Island, NY)
    January 1, 1970
    Yes! What a great surprise! This book was so much better then I even expected! Sometimes in thrillers you find yourself wading through background info just trying to get to the action, or waiting for the “twist..” Not here! I was hooked from the very beginning, before anything even “happened!” The author did a great job with these characters & describing their reactions & feelings.. Without over doing it at all. The people rang so true, even as things start to go off the rails. It’s amazing what Yes! What a great surprise! This book was so much better then I even expected! Sometimes in thrillers you find yourself wading through background info just trying to get to the action, or waiting for the “twist..” Not here! I was hooked from the very beginning, before anything even “happened!” The author did a great job with these characters & describing their reactions & feelings.. Without over doing it at all. The people rang so true, even as things start to go off the rails. It’s amazing what we do to each other, & how we torture ourselves by assuming the worst.. & then when it really got going?! Oh boy! Yeah I’m gonna remember this 1.. If this is your type or just sounds good to you, don’t let it slip past you!
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  • Dianna
    January 1, 1970
    I can't really say that I liked this book at all. The writing seemed flat. The characters felt underdeveloped and there were plot points introduced that never went anywhere. Having multiple narrators doesn't really pay off for me of you spend next to no time with the majority of them. I guess I was expecting more of a psychological thriller which this wasn't.
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  • Jackie
    January 1, 1970
    I won this in a Goodreads giveaway. It’s a decent book but has too many metaphors and the writing is awkward. Additionally I didn’t like all of the POVs
  • Wendy'sThoughts
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 Deception VS Truth Stars* * * * 1/2 Spoiler FreeWhen do we learn it...When do we learn to deceive? Does it happen when we as children instinctively do not want to be caught doing something bad or naughty...and we innocently tell our first lie...No, we didn't eat the cookies when we have crumbs on our face...Or does the idea of deep nontruths happen when we are more formed... more of who we become during our preteens, high school and then college times...When is it when we take on this practi 4.5 Deception VS Truth Stars* * * * 1/2 Spoiler FreeWhen do we learn it...When do we learn to deceive? Does it happen when we as children instinctively do not want to be caught doing something bad or naughty...and we innocently tell our first lie...No, we didn't eat the cookies when we have crumbs on our face...Or does the idea of deep nontruths happen when we are more formed... more of who we become during our preteens, high school and then college times...When is it when we take on this practice and hold it dear...for it protects others in our minds and also ourselves...Man of the Year by Caroline Louise Walker takes on this idea and runs with it. Ms. Walker has created a world of people who are on the brink. Brink of discovery about themselves, about those around them, and about what they have been doing to maintain their facades.You would think being named Man of the Year by the charity would mean the man in question was terrific and kind. Guess again. Dr. Robert Hart is not that man. Oh, he has the facade of being all that and a bag of chips, but if you were to reside in his head and thoughts, you would be greatly disappointed. He actually is not very likable when you have the insight into how he perceives things. But from the outside...He is the picture of most people's dreams...He has a very successful practice in Sag Harbor. His home is landmark worthy in its beauty and structure and he has the second wife all men attain...Glorious in figure, decorum and intelligent. She has this air around her where she is confident and able to move through any social circle. He even has made strides with his son, who was distant after the divorce. Jonah is back in his life and he brought his college friend Nick to hang out for the summer. Yes, from afar, things look grand. But like that movie, David Lynch did so many years ago, Blue Velvet, Dr. Robert Hall's life up close and personal is as disturbing as the close-up Lynch did of the ground eating bugs covering everything...This story takes a very unique approach of giving us multiple POV's from many different characters in the story. It grounds us to see things more clearly and to understand the impact of everyone's actions and reasons. I liked it and this method drew me in. What was most appealing, though was the writing. It was of a level which makes you think and ponder as you read. Yes, there was a hardcore story to follow but what was woven in around it was all the more enticing. This book is more of an exploration of characters and their minds and desires, their faults and forgiveness than an actual mystery thriller. There is the element of mystery in the puzzlement of where all of this is headed...but I felt it was the self-discovery of all of the characters which were the treasures. As a debut novel, this is something to be admired. Congratulations, Ms. Walker.A gifted copy was provided by Gallery Books via NetGalley for an honest review. For more Reviews, Free E-books and Giveaways
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  • Ludwig Reads
    January 1, 1970
    3.75 stars."And still, in that moment, I knew that [He] saw me as fragile, which made him feel powerful, which makes him happy; and happy is easier to live with...and so I chose to sit there looking fragile, so he could recharge, so we could get back to normal."Damn. As someone who's spent years with someone suffering from paranoid personality disorder, this plot was very intriguing to me. How does someone living with paranoia see you? What prompts them to act the way they do? How to act towards 3.75 stars."And still, in that moment, I knew that [He] saw me as fragile, which made him feel powerful, which makes him happy; and happy is easier to live with...and so I chose to sit there looking fragile, so he could recharge, so we could get back to normal."Damn. As someone who's spent years with someone suffering from paranoid personality disorder, this plot was very intriguing to me. How does someone living with paranoia see you? What prompts them to act the way they do? How to act towards them? Robert is haunted by this obsessive idea that his son's best friend is having an affair with his wife. The book takes us on that journey and the spotlight is shone on Robert's way of thinking, plotting...until something terrible happens. The fear and the lies follow. Readers who loved Deep Water by Patricia Highsmith will devour Man Of The Year.I liked this book. The first 50% was like observing a calm sea. Nothing too crazy. It picks up halfway through. The ending though...Who's the culprit? That revelation, I didn't see coming. It was a little soap-opera-y for me, but overall a cool twist.What I was craving more of was the wife's POV - I started reading her part towards the end and I couldn't get enough of her. I feel like if the author put her into a psychological thriller, it would be bomb.I love the author's writing, especially when it comes to perfecting the perspective of each character: The paranoid husband, the frustrated wife, the nosy friends, the son...I'll definitely be following the author's steps to see what she writes next.
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  • Myrna
    January 1, 1970
    An engaging tale of paranoia taking over Dr. Hart’s life and the effects it has on his family. Not a psychological thriller but a slow burn wondering what will happen next and what secrets might be lurking behind each door. People are not always what they appear to be and what an ending.
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  • Jessica Woodbury
    January 1, 1970
    If you need a thriller to give you a likable protagonist, this is not for you. Robert sucks. Just entirely and from the first page. He's a withholding father, a suspicious husband, a tyrannical boss. He came from hardly anything but doesn't seem all that happy with the life he's built for himself. Technically this is one of those "He had the perfect life" kind of books, but Robert doesn't seem all that happy with anything. This reminded me in tone of Herman Koch, who wrote THE DINNER, and is alw If you need a thriller to give you a likable protagonist, this is not for you. Robert sucks. Just entirely and from the first page. He's a withholding father, a suspicious husband, a tyrannical boss. He came from hardly anything but doesn't seem all that happy with the life he's built for himself. Technically this is one of those "He had the perfect life" kind of books, but Robert doesn't seem all that happy with anything. This reminded me in tone of Herman Koch, who wrote THE DINNER, and is always happy to give you someone who really sucks as your protagonist. The plot itself isn't quite as enjoyably twisty as one of Koch's, but I think they're decent comps for each other.There's a sharper version of this book lurking underneath, we see flashes of it when other characters take a turn narrating. But that version doesn't get as much attention as I'd like. To me, Robert was a clearly unreliable narrator from page 1. But it's hard to figure out what is really going on because his tunnel vision is so limited. This helps the book keep a general air of suspense and dread without making it feel too much like it's dangling clues or throwing twists at you.All that said, I found the end much too rushed and I don't think it stuck the landing. It felt like the interesting parts were just starting. I wanted this to be the jumping off point where there's more to dive into.
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