The Last Girlfriend on Earth And Other Love Stories, by Simon Rich (2013)

Genre: Contemporary Short Stories
Interest Level: Adult
The Last Girlfriend On Earth and Other Love storiesThis hilarious collection is aimed at those of use with a sizable sense of humour, no shame at spending time in the gutter, and a healthy dose of self-deprecation. Check, check and check? You are gonna love this. An abandoned condom describes its life in “Unprotected,” from the factory to the store shelf to a Batman wallet that closes with velcro and to its final resting place. I was cheering for that expired ole Trojan all the way! I mean, not all the way. Well, you know. The collection of short stories explores the ups and downs of love, from Charles Darwin’s awkward moves on an indigenous lovely in “Eureka” (hey! We all read Charles and Emma, you dog! Hands off the local ladies – you have a sweetie who adores you) to “The Adventure of the Spotted Tie,” which reveals Sherlock Holmes’ inability to discern his girlfriend’s obvious cheating.”The Present” was for me, particularly heartbreaking. It’s a tale of time travel used to right a wrong, or perhaps, in hindsight, wrong a right. Rich pulls no punches, and his tales are from a man’s perspective. It can be uncomfortable to read at times – particularly “Girlfriend Repair Shop” and its tale of love that diminishes and eventually transforms into nothing less than meanness. But it’s nicely balanced by the biting humour of “Unprotected,” the self-explanatory “Dog Missed Connections” and God’s love troubles in “Center of the Universe.” A quick read that will leave you laughing and occasionally wincing when he cuts a little close to home.

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