The Guncle by Steven Rowley was a book I picked up because of the title and back cover blurb. Titular character Patrick or Gup (“Gay Uncle Patrick” for short) finds himself the temporary guardian of his niece and nephew after they lose their mother. What follows is an adventure as the three of them tackle their new normal and Patrick tries to figure out parenthood. This book will have you laughing and crying along with Maisie, Grant, and Patrick.
I listened to the audiobook which is read by the author and only adds to the book as you are hearing the words the way the author wanted them to be heard. We get to hear Maisie’s developing attitude and Grant’s lisp, as well as Patrick’s changing tone and nuances. I kept finding reasons to listen to the audiobook because I wanted to know what was going to happen next.
I especially wanted to know how Maisie and Grant – at eight and six – were handling losing their mom because at twenty-eight and nineteen my sister and I were a mess when it happened to us. Like Maisie and Grant, we also had a Guncle, who despite his own doubts and grief stepped in to help, making the book personal. I think The Guncle wrapped up nicely but still leaves room for a sequel or even a companion novel.
I highly recommend the audio version but if you don’t like audiobooks I do recommend reading the book. There’s something for everyone in The Guncle and now I’m going to dive into Rowley’s backlist.
– Reviewed by Carissa, Main Library