The Guncle: Book summary and reviews of The Guncle by Steven Rowley

The Guncle

by Steven Rowley

The Guncle by Steven Rowley X
The Guncle by Steven Rowley
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  • Published May 2021
    336 pages
    Genre: Literary Fiction

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Book Summary

From the bestselling author of Lily and the Octopus and The Editor comes a warm and deeply funny novel about a once-famous gay sitcom star whose unexpected family tragedy leaves him with his niece and nephew for the summer.

Patrick, or Gay Uncle Patrick (GUP, for short), has always loved his niece, Maisie, and nephew, Grant. That is, he loves spending time with them when they come out to Palm Springs for weeklong visits, or when he heads home to Connecticut for the holidays. But in terms of caretaking and relating to two children, no matter how adorable, Patrick is, honestly, overwhelmed.

So when tragedy strikes and Maisie and Grant lose their mother and Patrick's brother has a health crisis of his own, Patrick finds himself suddenly taking on the role of primary guardian. Despite having a set of "Guncle Rules" ready to go, Patrick has no idea what to expect, having spent years barely holding on after the loss of his great love, a somewhat-stalled acting career, and a lifestyle not-so-suited to a six- and a nine-year-old. Quickly realizing that parenting--even if temporary--isn't solved with treats and jokes, Patrick's eyes are opened to a new sense of responsibility, and the realization that, sometimes, even being larger than life means you're unfailingly human.

With the humor and heart we've come to expect from bestselling author Steven Rowley, The Guncle is a moving tribute to the power of love, patience, and family in even the most trying of times.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Wise and hilarious." –People

"A laugh-out-loud heartwarmer." –Oprah Daily

"Rowley's depth and humor will warm even the most jaded hearts." –Washington Post

"A formerly famous gay sitcom star is suddenly tasked with raising his niece and nephew in this sweet, saucy novel." –Vogue

"Deeply entertaining." –Real Simple

"Gay Uncle Patrick is given custody of his young niece and nephew for the summer, and struggles to integrate his lifestyle as an actor with his new charges." –Entertainment Weekly

"The author of Lily and The Octopus and The Editor delivers arguably his funniest and most poignant novel yet." –E! News

"[A] brilliant tale of loss and love." –GMA.com

"[A] heartwarming, hilarious tale of family ties that even the deepest grief can't shake." –Southern Living

"A moving tribute to love, patience, and family in even the most trying of times." –Country Living

"A big-hearted, laugh-out-loud-funny kind of book that's sure to stay with you long after you turn the final page." –PopSugar

"[A] funny and heartwarming beach read." –CNN
 
"[A] moving, feel-good summer escape." –Newsweek

"[A] feel-good story, perfect for summer." –AARP

"This hilarious and heartfelt story will make you laugh, cry, and want to be a better person." –BookRiot
 
"Heartwarming, hilarious…Rowley finds humor and poignancy in the snappy narrative….Readers will find this delightful and illuminating." –Publishers Weekly
 
"Patrick is a memorable character, and it's genuinely thrilling to read screenwriter-turned-novelist Rowley's take on the mechanics of stardom....There's true insight here into the psychology of gay men, Hollywood, and parenting. A novel with some real depth beneath all its witty froth." –Kirkus Reviews

"Influenced by comic dialogue that would make Neil Simon jealous, the novel's serious undercurrent of loss gives way, in the end, to a warmth that will make readers smile....A funny, gentle tale of family and friends, and a salve for the wounds they often cause." –Library Journal
 
"Rowley's sensitive and witty exploration of grief and healing soothes with a delectable lightness and cunning charm." –Booklist

This information about The Guncle was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. Publication information is for the USA, and (unless stated otherwise) represents the first print edition. The reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that they do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, send us a message with the mainstream reviews that you would like to see added.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

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Author Information

Steven Rowley Author Biography

Photo: Malina Saval

Steven Rowley has worked as a freelance writer, newspaper columnist, and screenwriter. Originally from Portland, Maine, he is a graduate of Emerson College. He currently resides in Los Angeles with his boyfriend and their dog. Lily and the Octopus is his first novel, The Editor is his second.

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Other books by Steven Rowley at BookBrowse
  • Lily and the Octopus jacket
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