“The Guncle” by Steven Rowley

Image of the cover of "The Guncle"

About the book, from Penguin Random House:

“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. So when tragedy strikes and Patrick finds himself suddenly taking on the role of primary guardian, he is, honestly, overwhelmed.
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. But when his waggish set of “Guncle Rules” no longer appease Maisie and Grant’s parental void, 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.”

About the Author, Steven Rowley:

“Steven Rowley is the bestselling author of Lily and the Octopus, a Washington Post Notable Book of 2016 and The Editor, named by NPR and Esquire Magazine as one of the Best Books of 2019. His new novel, The Guncle, was hailed by O Magazine as one of the LGBT books changing the literary landscape and it was a Goodreads Choice Awards finalist for Novel of the Year. Rowley’s fiction has been published in twenty languages.

Lily and the Octopus is in development as a feature film at Amazon Studios. The Editor was optioned by Twentieth Century for director Greg Berlanti. Feature film rights for The Guncle have been picked up by Lionsgate. Steven 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 Palm Springs with his husband, the writer Byron Lane.”

Why I selected The Guncle for the June 2022 Giveaway:

  • In recognition of Pride Month, this gnome wanted to feature an author and book that highlight the unique voices and experiences of LGTQ+ individuals.
  • This book is an incredibly fun summer read – it’s full of laugh-out-loud humor, largely about the expected (and unexpected) joys and frustrations of parenting.
  • Although the book contains a lot of humor, it also does a really nice job addressing difficult subjects, including grief.
  • Each of the characters is so well-developed – they will stick with you long after you finish reading.
  • This book includes the BEST throuple neighbors you’ll find in a book, ever! This gnome wishes that John, Eduardo, Dwayne (JED!) lived next door and offered advice and fancy cocktails when needed ❤
  • Caftans. All the caftans! Let’s agree to start a movement of only wearing caftans from now on.
Image of the cover of "The Guncle" with a quote that reads: "What do we say in this house? Boys can do girl things and girls can do boy things. That's not even a Guncle Rule, there shouldn't even be boy things and girl things to begin with. People should just do what they want."

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