As he turns 40, Rouse (Confessions of a Prep School Mommy Handler, 2007) admits to becoming “the ultimate cliché”: he’s mentally and physically exhausted, hates his job, and realizes there is a void in his life that the city is no longer filling. He and his partner, Gary, take a vacation in Saugatuck, Michigan, “a Midwestern Martha’s Vineyard,” and on the spot decide to sell their home in St. Louis and move to the woods. Rouse vows to become a “modern-day Thoreau” and sets out to follow 10 life goals, roughly along the tenets espoused by Thoreau in Walden, Rouse’s favorite book. Rouse chronicles the hilarious escapades of these “two neurotic urbanites” as they ensconce themselves in the woods without magazine subscriptions, malls, Trader Joe’s, HGTV, or lattes. Rouse feels like a Martian confronting the locals at the general store, and suffers extreme anxiety when attempting ice fishing and karaoke.
A funny memoir about a male (and gay) Carrie Bradshaw wanna-be trying to make it in the woods of Michigan. His descriptions of coastal Michigan and woods surrounding his home were great. Made me want to move to Michigan -- and I already live there. Rouse is at his best when he is being humorous. His description of he and his partner's first foray into Wal-mart is hilarious. However, his attempts at being a deep thinker along the lines of Thoreau miss the mark. He just comes off as disingenuous in his motivations and musings.
Next up: "Catching Fire" by Suzanne Collins. This is the second book in "The Hunger Games" series.