Unexpectedly, Milo

Unexpectedly, Milo

Author:

Paperback, Pages: 344

Genres: Fiction, Humor, Mystery, Contemporary

Language: English

Reads: 36

Downloads: 1652

Rating: Rated: 865 timesRate It

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Book Description

Milo Slade, a thirty-three year old home healthcare aide, is witnessing the rapid dissolution of his three-year marriage to a polished, high-powered attorney named Christine. Though Milo doesnt quite know the root of his marital problems, he inevitably blames himself, or more specifically, he faults the demands his obsessive compulsive personality place upon him—the need to open a jar of Smuckers grape jelly or sing “99 Luftballons” in front of an audience, to name just a couple.
Yet Christine is still none the wiser about these inexplicable quirks as Milo has painstakingly hidden them from her and everyone else for years. No one knows the true—and in his mind more insidious—Milo, and such is the root of his profound loneliness, especially now that he and Christine are living apart during a trial separation.
Then one day Milo stumbles across a video camera and tapes, left behind in a park. He watches the first tape, which is a heartfelt confessional by a young woman who begins to reveal her secrets, starting small at first, and finally revealing that she blames herself for a tragic death of a friend. But not all the details add up and Milo is struck with the urge to free the sweet confessor from her guilt. He is, after all, an expert in keeping secrets…
In typical screwball fashion, Milo sets out on a cross-country journey to crack the case, but quickly gets sidetracked when he can no longer ignore the demands of his compulsions. But it is during these sidetracks that the true meaning of his adventure takes shape. Milo is weird, but as he discovers, so is everyone else. UNEXPECTEDLY, MILO is a humorous and touching novel about finding oneself, embracing the journey, and, unexpectedly, love.

Reviews
  •    Mozuru Heitchue
    2020
    I have picked this up and put it down countless times in the years since it was published. I LOVED Something Missing, Dicks' debut novel. So much so that I still recommend it to anyone who's looking for book recommendations. Perhaps because I loved Something Missing so, I had a hard time getting into it. Once I let that go, I really, really liked Milo.

    Milo has O.C.D. that manifests itself in ways that were new to me. The things he is driven to do make it both easier on him (he's not driven to count his steps or touch every street post for example) and more difficult since it drives him to hear words like cacophony. As you might imagine, it causes stress on his marriage, especially since his wife has no idea. Milo has been able to hide this side of himself from everyone ever since a childhood incident that scarred him.

    Mild spoilers ahead.




    That marriage starts to crumble before the start of the book and Milo winds up moving out when his wife asks for space. She is completely unclear on what she means by that and is frankly so mean to Milo that it is completely understandable that he thinks she means she wants him out of the house for some time, and not just for a couple of weeks on a friend's couch like she apparently meant. The marriage is clearly in a lot of trouble. They don't talk. He because he is trying desperately to hide his ocd, and she because well, her motivations aren't really clear since this isn't her story, but she is not painted in a very flattering light.

    Actually, her character is the weakest link in the story for me. It's hard to be sympathetic towards her even knowing how Milo has lied to her their entire relationship. This is partly because Milo himself is such a good guy that it's hard not to take sides.

    After Milo moves out, he finds a camcorder and a bag of tapes in a park. He waits a day to see if anyone claims them, and then picks them up (the unlikeliness of it still being there a day later made me wonder if the owner had simply set them down in the same place the next day) with the idea of trying to figure out who the owner is. He doesn't turn it over to the police. Instead, he starts to watch the tapes. They turn out to be a video diary, and it starts him on a quest. I won't say anymore, except read this book!



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