Read Love May Fail by Matthew Quick Online


Portia Kane is having a meltdown. After escaping her ritzy Florida life and her cheating pornographer husband, she finds herself back in South Jersey, a place that remains largely unchanged from the years of her unhappy youth. Lost and alone, looking for the goodness she believes still exists in the world, Portia sets off on a quest to save the one man who always believedPortia Kane is having a meltdown. After escaping her ritzy Florida life and her cheating pornographer husband, she finds herself back in South Jersey, a place that remains largely unchanged from the years of her unhappy youth. Lost and alone, looking for the goodness she believes still exists in the world, Portia sets off on a quest to save the one man who always believed in her—and in all of his students: her beloved high school English teacher, Mr. Vernon, who has retired broken and alone after a traumatic classroom incident.Will a sassy nun, an ex-heroin addict, a metal-head little boy, and her hoarder mother help or hurt Portia's chances on this quest to resurrect a good man and find renewed hope in the human race? Love May Fail is a story of the great highs and lows of existence: the heartache and daring choices it takes to become the person you know (deep down) you are meant to be....

Title : Love May Fail
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780062285560
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 401 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Love May Fail Reviews

  • Emily May
    2019-06-05 04:05

    When you catch your husband screwing a girl half your age, you are permitted to be bitchy, even when talking to adorable nuns on airplanes - nuns who buy you vodka, even.If a mid-life crisis took book form, I believe it would look something like this. Not surprisingly, it's boring, and it's also about people who hate their lives, get drunk and - eventually - find themselves.Love May Fail is my least favourite Quick book to date. Usually, I love the whimsical (but surprisingly dark) nature of his novels - the totally weird, sad, but lovable characters and the strange situations they find themselves in. Not one of the characters in this book was worth caring about, in my opinion, and the strangeness of the story was irritating, rather than cute.The book opens with Portia Kane - a trophy wife to her misogynistic pornographer husband - drunk, whilst watching her husband cheating on her with a young woman and planning to burst in and shoot them both. Realizing that this is perhaps not the best idea, she insults his manhood and storms out, leaving him for good. Due to a pre-nup, she is now almost penniless as well as being drunk off her face and in need of a place to go. So she returns home.Let me take a moment here to talk about how insufferable Portia Kane is. She's a spoiled brat who, though technically poor now, has rich white person syndrome bleeding from her pores. She actually thinks this:“She’s lucky.” I hate myself for envying this women in Nigeria whose husband drives a cab halfway around the world, saving money to rescue her from whatever hell Nigeria currently offers. It sounds like a fairy tale. She might as well be in an ivory tower. So romantic - beautiful even. Their struggle.I feel like Portia's unlikable aspects are supposed to be balanced out by our sympathy for her situation. If that was the case, it didn't work for me.While home, Portia attempts to restore her faith in humanity and goodness by helping out a depressed ex-high school teacher. Enter Nate Vernon and his perspective. Vernon has been ruminating on the subject of suicide ever since an unfortunate incident forced him into early retirement (and more than a touch of alcoholism). He spends his days talking to his dog - Albert Camus. The events of this novel are so subtle and boring that anything could be a spoiler so I'll tag this bit just in case... (view spoiler)[Albert Camus literally leaps through Vernon's open window and dies. An event that causes Vernon to consider whether dogs can commit suicide. Oh my fucking god. (hide spoiler)]After Vernon's perspective, we get two more. One from Sister Maeve Smith - a nun and Vernon's mother - who writes letters to her son from beyond the grave (that's right, she's dead). And another from Chuck Bass, a guy who has had a crush on Portia for twenty years and sadly isn't the hot guy from Gossip Girl.In terms of plot, it's simply this: people get very drunk and then "save themselves". Kind of. But really it's just a mishmash of weirdness, quirks, ideas and perspectives. I can't say I enjoyed any of it or really cared about the fate of the characters. It was too bloated and messy, full of many different components that never came together and made a satisfying whole.Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Tumblr

  • Diane
    2019-05-20 23:12

    I've deleted my original review of this book. In short, I didn't like it and I didn't finish it.

  • Kelly (and the Book Boar)
    2019-06-20 21:29

    Find all of my reviews at: Matthew Quick:Portia Kane’s life is falling apart. It’s bad enough she married a disgusting pornographer, but when the scumbag continually cheats on her, she’s left with one choice – hide in the closet and blow his brains out . . . or maybe not. Realizing that spending her life in prison for murdering a philandering P.O.S. would be a waste, Portia instead decides to return to her hometown in an attempt to re-find herself and what her purpose in life is supposed to be. With a little less than six degrees of separation, Portia realizes her mission is to get her favorite high school teacher Mr. Vernon . . . back to teaching again. I should have LOOOOOOOVED Love May Fail. The premise made me believe it would combine a couple of my favorite things - hoarding . . . .and a road trip . . . Instead, I was introduced to Portia Kane and Chuck (and even little Tommy) and . . . Never have I wanted to smack a character so much – and my apologies to Mr. Quick, but this is why men get a bad rap when it comes to writing female leads. If you can’t do, DON’T DO IT. Creating this vapid lunatic of a “feminist” . . . did not make you look great. Now, before everyone gets all up in arms about my low rating, please note I have given ALL of Matthew Quick’s books 4 or 5 Stars. I luuuuuurv him. He just “gets” how to write about characters battling some mental/emotional issues and each of his books is remarkably different from each other. As he says:“Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be normal.”Bottom line is – this book was a fail for me. But I’m not worried. I’m certain Matthew Quick and I can get back to what we once were . . .

  • Will Byrnes
    2019-06-06 03:10

    Matthew Quick deals in damage control, from the very nervous Pat Peoples in Silver Linings Playbook to the probably autistic Bartholomew Neil in The Good Luck of Right Now, to a crate of bruised produce in his latest novel, Love May Fail. Portia Kane made a bad choice when she was younger, going for what glittered instead of substance, in her case her writerly yearnings. After confronting her cheating pornographer hubby, Ken (not a doll) in flagrante with another chicklet half her age, Portia manages not to fire her Colt 45, but, instead, heads back home, leaving her terminally damaged marriage in Florida. This being a Matthew Quick novel, home is his usual literary stomping ground, the Philadelphia area, Oaklyn, NJ specifically, which happens to be the town where Quick grew up. Portia moves in with mom who lives with some damage of her own. She is an agoraphobic hoarder with, I am sure, a rainbow of maladies identifiable in the DSM. Will taking care of mom, who, though her belfry is overstuffed, exudes unconditional love for her daughter, help Portia heal herself and get back on her true path? About that path. Through a chance encounter with a nun, Portia finds a goal for herself. In high school, she had been one of the fortunates who got what her inspirational English teacher, Mister Vernon, had to offer. He had opened her up to creativity, writing and literature. But after suffering a large personal trauma, Vernon has shut himself away in a remote location. Portia makes it her mission to save Mister Vernon, and return him to his calling.Matthew Quick - From his blogQuick has had a bit of exposure to people with trouble. In his 2013 interview with GoodReads, we learn that he had spent a year trying to help teenagers diagnosed with autism. He had other MH involvement too:…I worked in neuro health lockdown unit as well, primarily with people who had suffered traumatic brain injuries. We always noticed when we’d get new staff, we’d watch ‘em the first day, and if they laughed on the first day, not at the people we were working with, but at the absurdity of the situation of our day-to-day. If they laughed in a good friendly way, we knew they’d be back the next day. And a lot of times if they didn’t laugh, a lot of times they wouldn’t come back again. They would just quit, after one day.He looks a lot at existential issues in Love May Fail. Mister Vernon has a dog named Albert Camus, with whom he discusses the absurdity of life. Crazy things happen. There is an appreciation for the need of humor even, or maybe particularly, in dark times and circumstances. He has also spent some time at the front of a classroom, and this informs the novel as well.Q populates his tales with appropriately quirky characters. The mom does not, IMHO, get enough screen time, but is interesting, in a coot-ish sort of way. Portia reconnects with an old friend from school, someone with a history of drug use. The friend’s five-year-old does Van Halen tribute performances at a local bar. Portia also encounters a saintly nun, a crusty mother superior, a good man who had always had been smitten with her, and a very irascible and troubled former teacher. Saving Mister Vernon will be a challenge. But with the support Portia builds around her, can she break through and get it done?Clearwater vision - from sofc.orgThere are events that might be seen as miraculous in Love May Fail. Q refers to a supposed Virgin Mary sighting on the side of an office building in Clearwater. This was a real event, in which people flocked to the place to see and maybe pray to a manifestation of the Virgin. It probably wouldn’t be the strangest thing to have happened in Florida. Maybe she was looking for a condo. Deitific manipulations are applied to make sure that this or that person shows up in a particular place at a certain time. A weepily sad demise recalls the angel Clarence, from It’s a Wonderful Life. And the five-year-old’s stage performance is probably miraculous as well, although in a different way. The journey of the story is Portia trying to resurrect her old teacher’s career, but also to let herself be born into a better, truer life. I suppose there is a point being made here about divine intervention bringing people together, with the expected nods to personal responsibility and making the most of the opportunities that come ones way, however those link-ups might have been arranged. But, while allowing for the vagaries of free choice, it does seem that there is a pretty powerful director to the events that take place in Love May Fail. Deus ex machina, sans the ex machina piece. Hey, the guy is allowed. It is his story. But it seemed to me that there was too much very specific divine intervention to sustain a willing suspension of disbelief.Love May Fail is an interesting, engaging story with a typical cast of Q-characters. I performed the mandatory eye-rolls when I felt the divine intervention lines had been crossed, but I still enjoyed the book. Love May Fail is not Quick’s best work, and it is not so engaging as his prior effort, The Good Luck of Right Now, but still, it’s a Matthew Quick novel, so you can expect a positive outlook, likeable characters and a huge, warm heart. You could do worse for a beach outing or a flight. And if you are flying, be sure to pay attention to that nun seated next to you. You should be warned, however. Do not read this in a public place, unless you are ok with the world seeing you go all wet-face. If you do not blubber on reading a particular scene near the very end of this book, I will officially revoke your Member of the Human Race card. I’m just sayin’.Review posted – 6/19/15Publication date – 6/16/15=============================EXTRA STUFFFilm rights have been optioned by SonyLinks to the author’s personal, Twitter and FB pagesThere is a lot of interesting material about Quick in thisinterview with Dr Jo Anne White . Q talks about coping with depression, working with autistic teens, the importance of laughter, and there is a nice segment in which he talks about teaching. The interview was done around the time his last novel was released, but is still relevant.Here is the interview Quick did with Goodreads in May, 2013This vid shows folks gathering at the Virgin Mary appearance in Clearwater, Florida

  • Cait (Paper Fury)
    2019-05-21 21:17

    I feel very awkward giving this book a low-star-rating because it is, in fact, about an author whose book flunks badly. Plus I'm a writer too and, HELLO WORST NIGHTMARE. So yes. 'Scuse the awkwardness. And the reason it's getting a lot rating? It's ME not the book!! I'm a YA reader, basically, and just found nothing to relate to in this book (until the writerly bit, but that doesn't come in until after 90%). I loved Matthew Quick's Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock and Boy 21, but his adult book didn't work so well for me. MY BAD. If you like books about people having mid-life-crisis and discovering their passions, and books about broken teachers, and sad little dogs, and writing books, and falling in love -- THEN THIS IS PROBABLY FOR YOU.Me? I shall return to the children's aisle and reread Neil Gaiman's Fortunately The Milk, or something. ANYWAY. I basically couldn't relate to this book, because I had nothing in common with Portia Kane. There's 4 narrators, but she's the first and the most prominent. Her husband is a cheating horrible dude who makes horrible porn movies. She doesn't have a great education. She's a really angry and passionate person and she drinks a lot and basically has an awkward midlife crises that I cared basically 2% about. She was a "writer". But she spent more time talking about it than doing it and NO NO. Also she was so sensitive about her writing to the point that the love-of-her-life, Chuck, never told her what he truly thought about anything in case he offended her. that's sweet of him. But it's a bit ridiculous when he can't even aSK her how the writing is going without her going psycho, right?!!A big part of the story hinges on Portia's old high school teacher, Nathan Vernon. This part was freakishly sad. Vernon got beat up by stupid kids while teaching one day and he's got a LOT of PTSD because of it. (Understandably!) He's a real mean, sad ol' dude. Portia turns up and saves him from suicide and basically tries to make him love life by bullyign him into it. It kind of made me sick and not want to have anything to do with Portia. She was SO BUSY trying to "save" him, that she was actually really selfish about it and didn't try to understand who he was. Maybe that was the point?! It just disturbed me a lot and made me dislike Portia more. This whole part is pretty reminiscent of The Dead Poet Society Movie. It references that movie a few times too, but, awkwardly, I fell asleep in that movie. HIDE ME FROM THE RABID FANS.Then there was a whole bunch of boring letters. I may have napped during that part. Then we get to Chuck-the-sweetie. He's got a messed up family and he meets Portia and is totally in love with her and blah blah -- HAPPILY EVER SMOOCHING AFTER. I'm just so not a romantic person, okay?! And this is a chick-flick. Well, until it gets to like the last 90% and it's all "this happened and then this happened" and it was just RUSHING. Although, that was okay with me, because I was ready to be done.Basically this book just WASN'T FOR ME. I don't think it was badly written! I was just bored and didn't care for the characters and felt totally unconnected. I did't like Portia's aggressive personality and I didn't understand anyone's actions or motivations. MY BAD. But who knows?! Maybe it's me not the book. Maybe when I accidentally turn into an adult I'll appreciate it more. FOR NOW. I SHALL BE FINGERPAINTING WITH ALL THE COLOURS OF THE WIND. Bye.

  • Theresa
    2019-05-30 03:05

    "Love May Fail" by Matthew Quick is a contemporary novel about some serious mental health issues like: OCD, anxiety, depression, drug abuse, alcoholism, PTSD, and suicidal thoughts. But I like that Quick has some light-hearted and quirky moments as well to balance all the "heavy stuff". I enjoyed the first half much more than the second half though. I thought the Chuck Bass chapters made this novel feel a little too long for me. The story started to drag by this point. I much preferred Portia Kane's and Nate Vernon's chapters. Portia and Nate were more fleshed-out characters than Chuck, probably because they were so troubled and emotionally wounded. I like novels that have a sunny but also cloudy demeanor. Life is not all good. but it's not all bad either. I really enjoyed Quick's writing style. He's a funny dude. I like his spunk! I applaud him for writing about mental illness in a raw and honest way. Enjoy!

  • Kristina Horner
    2019-05-31 01:08

    I liked this book okay plot-wise, but I got very tired of Chuck's fragile masculinity. The amount he obsessed over not being to buy Portia "brand name clothes like her rich shitty ex-husband" was literally the most boring character flaw I could possibly imagine.I was also very confused every time they mentioned "Portia's feminism" because it was really only referenced as an annoying thing that the men in her life had to deal with, or something she "put aside" in order to enjoy the problematic things she loved.But I never saw her actually do or think or model any kind of behavior that actually felt feminist? Which is fine, because not all women in books HAVE to be feminists but then why did they keep referencing it like she was one?

  • Bonnie
    2019-06-06 01:13

    Portia Kane is a woman who used to have big dreams of being a published author but is currently experiencing something akin to a mid-life crisis. We’re first introduced to her character as she hides drunk in her bedroom closet with a handgun watching her porn-producer husband cheat on her with a much, much younger woman. As sad as it sounds, Quick made this introduction memorable and hilarious, as unlikely as that seems. Deciding that going to jail for shooting her husband and his lover she dubs “Khaleesi” just isn’t worth it so she hops on a plane to head back home to her simple-minded hoarder of a mother. She has a coincidental run-in with a nun she’s seated next to on the plane at which point Portia, still drunk, spills her guts to her even going so far as to describe just how endowed her soon to be ex-husband isn’t. Coincidentally the nun is actually the mother of her favorite English teacher that changed her whole outlook on life, who just so happens to be going through his own mid-life crisis as well.Honestly, I could continue on with the various plots and coincidences (there are many of both in this tale). There are also several different POV changes: Portia of course, her English teacher Mr. Vernon, Chuck Bass (another individual left changed by Mr. Vernon and someone who has harbored a crush on Portia for the better part of two decades), and even a brief interlude to Mr. Vernon’s mother who we’re made informed by the letters she sent to her son. Portia, regardless of her protestations that “it wasn’t about the money” doesn’t ever come across as anything but a rich, privileged whiner. The flashbacks to her past and her childhood dreams should have been enough to make her a bit more tolerable, but unfortunately she never did dredge up any sympathy from me. And her showing up at her favorite English teacher’s house was more creepy than gracious. I have a favorite teacher that I recall with absolute adoration, however, I still can’t say I would ever get the urge to show up at his house unannounced declaring that I was there to “save him”. Mr. Vernon’s character was the POV most explored and was the most interesting to read about. His mother’s POV could have been left out entirely, which would have left this book minus the two dozen or so mentions of “my husband, God” which made my eye twitch just about every time. There is also a very strange and intense focus on negative reviews (it specifically mentions a bad review a published book received via Kirkus) and ultimately the impact they have on an author. Not sure what Quick was trying to say with that little tirade but I find it more than a bit funny that Kirkus didn’t actually care for Love May Fail very much.I’ve heard this is a common trend in Quick’s novels (this is my first Quick novel so I can’t speak for the rest), but faith and the belief that there’s always something to live for is the theme with this one. It’s about finding that spark in life that spurs you up over the next hurdle that life will inevitably throw your way. The idea was there with this one but the execution and the abundant coincidences left me feeling far from inspired.I received this book free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

  • Raven Haired Girl
    2019-06-02 23:18

    Gotta say the characters in this book did absolutely nothing for me, zero connection. Portia was a poor example of a feminist. In fact the whole feminist rant was out of place and all wrong in this narrative. It was all bark and no bite. What was portrayed as feminism was poorly executed. Don't get sucked in by the pro feminist hype this book claims to deliver, all wrong. To be blunt the narrative was a mess. Stays on course and suddenly veers off track in a big way. Messy would be kind. The ending was bland and nonsensical, felt out of place. Very strange overall, leaving you scratching your head asking (not in a good way) What the heck did I just read? It felt very fragmented, poorly stitched to weave a story never coming together. Must say I was disappointed and I didn't expect much going in. Not Quick's best work, hope to see a marked improvement next time. For this and other reviews visit

  • Tracy
    2019-06-07 01:04

    While Love May Fail begins with Portia Kane leaving her lying, cheating husband, the story actually starts years earlier, in her high school English classroom, where the teacher, Mr. Vernon, sparks something in his students that continues to have great impact for many of them. Quick (Silver Linings Playbook) has an amazing talent for creating characters that have every reason to see the world’s cup as half-empty but manage to see it as half-full instead. A novel about the joy and consequences of redemption and the worthwhileness of trying.

  • Figgy
    2019-06-17 21:11

    Love May Fail is the story of four people, all connected, and each with their life in a certain state of instability.We have Portia Kane, who just caught her porn king husband sleeping with a girl barely half her age. She’s going home to try and figure out the next step.I say the word wang several times and describe Ken’s tiny penis at great length before I think better of using such vivid sexual imagery while conversing with a nun, but she seems fascinated – riveted.She squints and smiles when I say the word, maybe in spite of herself and her religious convictions.Wang.Hilarious!Like I’m tickling the old woman with dirty words.Nate Vernon, Portia’s high-school English teacher, who had some pretty… forceful feedback from a student a few years back, and has given up teaching.This is the absurd, I say to Albert Camus in my mind as I sip my stronger-than-I-like coffee. My suicide attempt results in being stuck in my own home with a former student who wants me to teach again. This is any retired teacher’s hell. It’s like that Stephen King novel. My own personal version of Misery.Sister Maeve Smith, Nate’s estranged mother, who took her vows after he was grown, and who is now dying of cancer.I love you. I am not mad at you for failing to answer these letters. Maybe you didn’t even receive any of them? Maybe the PO box address I have is no longer current, no one is forwarding you mail, and this last letter will never even be read by your eyes, and yet I will send it anyway, because a mother’s hope is undending.And Chuck Bass, who was a couple of years above Portia in school, and is now clean after spending most of his twenties addicted to heroin, but no one wants to hire him because of that big blank on his resume.He pushes the button on his phone, and mine starts ringing.“I wonder who that could be?” I say in an overly dramatic voice that Tommy Loves. It’s so easy to entertain the little guy.“Hello,” I say into my phone.“Uncle Chuck?” Tommy says into his.“Speaking. Who is this?”“Tommy!”“Tommy Who?”“Tommy your nephew.”“That’s an incredibly weird last name, Mr. Your-Nephew. Is it Greek?”The rest of this review can be found here!

  • Maya Panika
    2019-05-30 22:12

    I’m just a little over halfway through this book and I’m afraid I just can’t finish it.The book is in four parts; each concerns a different character. The first is Portia Kane. Portia is such a ridiculous, badly-drawn and tedious character. I struggled through her story (the high school flashback is particularly slow, drawn-out and tiresome) and began skimming when Portia’s old school friend, her nauseatingly cutesy and precocious child and gauche brother Chuck entered the tale and the cloying sweetness and sticky sentimentality made me gag. The story then moves on to Nate Vernon, Portia’s old high school English teacher. This was a pleasing change of pace at first, but quickly became boring and then the dog… Well. It all hit a tree for me at that point. I battled on through Sister Maeve Smith which was almost as dreary as Nate’s bit. I skimmed through the start of Chuck Bass but couldn’t see anything that inspired me to carry on wading through to the end so I gave it up. I rarely review a book I haven’t finished, I always do try to finish, but I honestly haven’t the fortitude for a whole 400 pages of stuff like this. It’s such a disappointment. I absolutely adored Matthew Quick’s first novel The Silver Lining’s Playbook (hated the film, but that’s another story). I was excited when I was offered a review copy of The Good Luck of Right Now, but that was dreadfully dull. Now I’m disappointed again. I think I’m going to have to give up reading Matthew Quick.I normally give any book I found impossible to finish one star. I’ll give this two – it’s not entirely without merit, it’s not totally egregious, it’s just too sentimental, too slow, too contrived and too boring for me.

  • Alena
    2019-06-09 22:09

    A quick and enjoyable read, but something feels a little forced when I read Matthew Quick. I like his characters, particularly the neurotic Portia Kane, but the plot feels manipulative. I prefer more subtlty or nuance in my books.

  • Emily
    2019-06-10 00:09

    This was never getting more than 3 stars after the Albert Camus business near the beginning, but I was interested enough in the story to continue, even after that plot decision. I saw what the author was doing with it, but I do not forgive. Matthew Quick, in my short experience with him, strikes me as a fan of the redemptive tale, and since I too am a fan, I enjoy what I've experienced so far. I really liked the ending of this book. It made me cry, and I do love a good book cry. The audio book was well-performed by multiple actors. I picked up the book when there were about 60 pages left, and found myself getting sucked back into the story and blowing through it. I had been at a point where I just wanted it to be over. I thought he was juggling too many plots, and I didn't like Danielle's fate any more than I liked that of Albert Camus. And I didn't think either was necessary. A lot of people have a problem with Portia, and I agree, she's not very likeable. But I don't see her as some representation of Quick's view of women, as some have. I think she's just a flawed character with a lot of baggage. I didn't love her, but I still wanted a happy ending for her. I liked the nuns, except for the constant references to Jesus as "my husband". I wasn't sure if that was supposed to be a character quirk or if nuns actually talk that way. I suspect it's the former. The constant references to heavy metal became tiresome, mainly because I couldn't relate to that level of devotion to it after high school (OK, and maybe a bit in college). I plan to check out more of Quick's work. I liked The Good Luck of Right Now more than this, and Silver Linings Playbook too (even though I haven't read the book yet). I wouldn't recommend picking this up first if you've never tried any of his other books.

  • April
    2019-05-20 21:02

    Straight up, Love May Fail did not fail to captivate me. It’s a beautiful book about the impact we have on the lives of others. Read the rest of my review here

  • Katy Noyes
    2019-06-10 20:21

    I've enjoyed all of Matthew Quick's other books in the past - on the surface, they look like fairly light reads, but every time, there's always a darker heart and a strong message about personal responsibility, of taking control of your life, that makes his name one to watch.Love May Fail reads a lot like several stories in one. Various characters come to the fore to narrate chunks of the story, leaving others in the background for a while, but the flow does bring the plot together for the end in a quite moving and realistic way.It all begins with one however - Portia Kane. We meet her as she is contemplating the pros and cons of murdering her cheating porn-director husband. Choosing instead to confront him and leave, she instinctively does she thing she loathes - returns home. Neither the small town nor her hoarder mother seem to have changed at all since her metal-head teenage days. Meeting up with an old friend, she learns her beloved English teacher has suffered a horrendous ordeal, and, setting off the second path of the story, she determines to find him and see if she can turn his life around. Flashbacks of her high school English and teacher Mr Vernon, who then takes over the narrative gave me both reminders of my own teenage years and the hope I had for my adult life, and, like The Silver Linings Playbook, showed how a person can break down when things don't go to plan. Portia takes more of a back seat as Mr Vernon narrates, and her quest to improve his life felt a bit 'quirky' at times and she lost some of her appeal for me by losing her voice. Other new characters add some dimensions - brother of her friend, Chuck Bass, obviously to become a love interest, and Danielle and Tommy - his sister and nephew bring stories of pathos and cuteness combined (and the best Bon Jovi tribute band name I've ever heard of). Their stories all intermingle and take centre stage at times, which both added to the story but also felt like there were too many strands dangling and split my sympathies and concentration.It's hard to pinpoint if the split narrative worked for me or didn't. I missed Portia when she wasn't telling her story, but then really wanted to hear how Mr Vernon was when he also left the scene. And then I wanted to know more about Portia's mother. It's a very full book - drug addiction, book writing, prophetic nuns, bar scenes, is it TOO full? I'm giving it four stars, so I think I made it through and found it came together, but in the hands of a lesser writer I might not have thought so.Heavy-handed on the morals, every character gets a chance at redemption - how will each fare? Matthew Quick never makes his stories feel like summer beach reads, there is always something meaty there to consider. There may be a little too much squeezed in here, but every character does have verve and a human failing that makes them human.There are emotional scenes, some funny ones, and it's a read that you will likely feel nostalgic reading, for your own dreams from your youth. Review of an Edelweiss advance copy, with thanks to the publisher.

  • Amanda NEVER MANDY
    2019-06-08 20:25

    Review to come when I feel like it. ;)7/25/16I finally feel like it so here you are:Love May Fail...and it does. Like how I felt while reading this book. Initially I thought I was falling in love but about halfway through I realized that my new feelings were more akin to annoyance that was quickly followed by a disappointment filled dislike. It reminded me of a younger boy I chased after in my later years of high school. I flirted, he flirted and it was all sweet and fun until I realized his youth equaled a level of immaturity I had zero patience for. Our relationship quickly deteriorated after the first kiss induced fat lip and was completely finished off when his every Friday at school delivery of a single red rose was halted by my prickly cactus return gift.The beginning of the end for my relationship with this book was when I stepped into a big pile of multiple point of views. They are the death of any good story in the land of Amanda, especially when they play the every other chapter game and/or the voice behind the characters doesn’t change. I will say with this read that three of the voices were for the most part distinguishable, but the fourth was a joke. Once that turd rolled into the picture my love at first blush turned to annoyance.The story itself was also a major source of bitterness for me. It started out great but when the fourth guy added his bit and I saw the direction things were going, my nails on a chalkboard annoyance turned into definite dislike. The characters that had potential fell into a big stinkin’ hole of predictability along with those that were only there for decoration or to obtain an “I can see that coming a mile away” plot goal. When I have no one to care about or root for I am instantly considering other reading options such as the back of a box of cereal or the directions listed on a shampoo bottle.So this review would be my prickly cactus return gift on a very disappointing read. After turning the last page and marking this read complete, I immediately removed all of this author’s other books from my to-read list.I like you but I am not in like with you anymore.

  • Ellie
    2019-06-16 22:20

    I loved Love May Fail. It felt a little manipulative and easy which is why I gave it three stars (although 3.5 would have been more accurate) but on the other hand, it worked. I choked up and was moved all the places I was supposed to.Portia Kane has been betrayed by her pornographer husband and has returned home to her hoarder mother. She needs to rethink her life. Taking her mother out to dinner (in a funny and sad scene), Portia runs into a woman she knew in high school and finds out that the teacher she adored and who helped her survive her painful home life was assaulted by a student and has disappeared. Portia decides that saving this teacher will also save her.I could not stop reading this book. Even though I had many criticisms about the depth of the characters and their relationships, I was completely hooked. And that's worth something. Maybe a lot. Because I don't often read books where my critical response is so separate from my emotional response.Maybe this book is a fulfillment of so many wishes that I (and probably many others) have. Whatever the reason, I found it an emotionally satisfying read. If it's a guilty pleasure, I plan on enjoying it without the guilt.

  • Kim Howard
    2019-05-23 04:04

    This book started out promising but then it just went south for me. I enjoy Matthew Quick's writing style. His writes his characters as ordinary people facing life's challenges, but something was missing with the characters in this story.This book was told in a multiple character perspective which for me didn't work that well. His characters were not very likable and somewhat depressing. The first 2/3rds of the book look like it was going to lead us somewhere but the last third was just went off the tracks and got lost. I can't really give it a strong recommendation.

  • Alissa
    2019-06-06 00:06

    Quirky novel about second chances. I liked how each section was narrated by four main characters and explored the story further. The ending totally made me cry. Read it to have your faith restored in humanity.

  • Karen Barber
    2019-05-21 22:04

    'Love May Fail' is an unusual book. The title suggests a book about taking a chance, having the courage to take a risk and hope that it all works out. The main characters are all, in some way, flawed but their lives intertwine and allow us to catch glimpses of the way we can influence those we come into contact with.There are a number of stories within this novel, some of which are more interesting than others.The main character is Portia Kane, a rather irritating woman with a good heart who tends to let life pass her by. She has, for years, lived with the fact that her mother is a hoarder and social recluse. Portia finds her husband cheating on her at the start of the novel, so she takes off on some crazy mission to save the one man who inspired her-Mr Vernon, her high school teacher. Things don't go quite to plan, but Portia does find a new relationship and becomes a writer (albeit one whose novel bombs).Mr Vernon is a broken man when we meet him. He's lost that spark his students recall with fondness-but I think that's inevitable if you're attacked by a student! He is quite pretentious in many ways, but as we learn more about him he feels a more genuine character.This is a novel of coincidences. It felt quite manipulative, and I really didn't feel emotionally connected enough to the characters to be drawn into their worlds. Perhaps the most genuine characters were Portia's old friend, Danielle, and her brother, Chuck. Unfortunately, even these characters were toyed with in such a way that I lost interest in them.I can't help but feel this is one of those novels that on a different day, or under a different set of circumstances, I might have felt a lot more positively about. Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC though.

  • Amanda Patterson
    2019-05-23 03:22

    Portia Kane leaves her cheating mega-wealthy husband in Florida and goes home to Philadelphia. She meets Sister Maeve Smith on the plane, where she confesses her drunken mess of a life to the bemused nun. Portia, in the depths of misery, thinks about the one man she knows was good, Mr Vernon, her English teacher. When she arrives, she finds her crazy mother - an agoraphobic hoarder who barely leaves the house – has not changed. Portia meets and falls in love with the lovely Chuck Bass. Chuck, a former drug addict, has cleaned up his life and who lives with his sister, who is an old friend of Portia’s, and his nephew, Tommy. Chuck has gone back to school and is looking for a job as a teacher. The book is told in four pieces, narrated in turn by Portia, Mr Vernon, Sister Maeve and Chuck. Quick is an expert in telling the stories of damaged people with a good deal of humour and hope. In Love May Fail, he tells the stories of the people who look after the crazy people in their lives. Portia looks after her mother, Chuck looks after his sister, Maeve looks after her son, and Mr Vernon looks after his dog, Albert Camus. I enjoyed this book. It is rich with characters who have less than perfect lives, but somehow manage to find their way in the end.

  • Laura
    2019-06-16 02:20

    One thing I got from this book: hesitate to give a bad review! However... This wasn't a bad book, but I've enjoyed other works by Quick more than this. Possibly it was because I didn't feel that there was anything really unique about the characters, that they were just "types" (Jersey girl, somewhat embittered teacher, porn king turned do-gooder) and thus not people to get excited about. It also seemed rather random at times, as though the author had several good stories in mind, and rather than write a series of short stories he tossed them all into this novel but wasn't quite sure how to link them together in any meaningful way. ARC provided by publisher.

  • Christina
    2019-06-03 21:16

    I feel like I'm supposed to really love Matthew Quick, but this is my second novel of his and I'm not feeling it. The beginning of the book hooked me. I loved Portia, who had just discovered her disgusting husband was cheating on her. She was hilarious and her section of the book was awesome, but as the POVs changed, I got less and less interested in these weird adults who were connected by their high school teacher. Portia really dissapointed me by the end and her backwards feminist shtick got annoying fast. Chuck was the only redeeming character for me, and even he wasn't that great.

  • Abby
    2019-05-21 23:03

    I was quite impressed by this one, considering its lower rating. It was my third Matthew Quick and was consistent with the familiar writing of his novels. This one involved Portia Kane, a woman trying to bring her former high school English teacher back to teaching. The book is separated into 4 portions for 4 different people involved with each other in various ways. There were lots of emotions going through me as I read, which is just what I like in a book.

  • Ginny Harple
    2019-06-04 03:25

    I love you Matthew Quick. I don't care what other people say. Your quirky, crazy, damaged people give me hope. From winning a dance contest to writing a novel to visiting the Cat Parliament, their crazy adventures make me smile. They persevere. They find their own kind. And they find happiness. And all the craziness that makes the magic... Well I just love it. Thank you.

  • Kevin English
    2019-06-06 23:27

    I always find myself forging a connection with the teachers in Quick's books. They inspire and challenge. They offer hope and a greater good.

  • Asheley
    2019-06-03 01:30

    Every time Matthew Quick releases another novel into the world, I feel like it's Christmas or maybe even my birthday. I wasn't too sure where Love May Fail was taking me when I began it - this author is instant-read for me and it had been a while since I'd read the summary - but this is where I get to trust the author and enjoy the ride. I love this and it paid off. By the end of the book, I found myself working hard to stay at my emotional baseline (I failed) and truthfully I ended the day much better for having made this story a part of it.The story begins with Portia Kane, who ends an unhealthy marriage to a wealthy man. She travels home to her mentally unwell mother, immediately remembering why being home is so difficult in the first place. Portia has decided to pursue a dream that she buried long-ago: she wants to write fiction. Nobody made a bigger impression on her than one of her high school teachers, Mr. Vernon. Portia learns while at breakfast with her mother (phew, such a chore) that Mr. Vernon is no longer teaching after something huge happened to him while teaching, and this effectively drove him from the classroom. Now he just lives a private life with his dog and his cane out in the middle of nowhere, and his world is a much different place. Portia thinks this is awful. Portia, with some encouragement, makes it a mission of hers to get Mr. Vernon back in front of a classroom...basically without regard to whether or not Mr. Vernon wants to be back in front of a classroom. Ahem. ----Ahhh. So there are a few things that I can expect when I read adult fiction by Matthew Quick: Colorful, interesting characters in both the main and secondary casts. Humor infused throughout the storyline to break up all of the serious, because the serious is there, because life is serious, and because the characters have ya know, things going on in life. (We all do.) My heart to feel squeezed when I'm finished with the book, like the story is actually hugging me. I'm being serious. This is Portia's story, her journey if you will, from one place in her life to another. But it is also the story of three other people: Mr. Vernon, Chuck Bass, and Sister Maeve. These people are all connected in the craziest, most amazing way and even though it takes patience to see their story come full circle, IT IS SO WORTH IT. The story is told in four points-of-view, so there are four unique voices telling the tale. I tried not to have a favorite, I really did - but ultimately I could not help it. I fell so hard for Chuck Bass, the 90's hair-band-loving ex-drug-addict/family guy. Chuck struggles to be somebody now that he's clean. He's an amazing uncle to his sister's child and once he reconnects with (and falls for) former classmate Portia Kane, he worries that he may never really be enough, at least compared to the wealthy husband she used to have. His story is fantastic, his actions are fantastic, and the love he has is so great, particularly the love he has for his nephew. I love the other characters too. Two characters in particular that I love that did not get their own POV's are Portia's mother and Sister Maeve's nun-friend. I just tend to love character-driven stories and I'm always so amazed at what Matthew Quick gives us. I felt such a connection to this one because I too have that one teacher in high school that was so, so inspiring to me and really set a course for my life. He's the one that I think of almost, if not, every single day because of the difference he made in my whole life. That teacher is a super-huge topic of conversation in my house between my husband and I because he made a huge impact on him too. I'm not sure how Mr. Quick manages to write to the very core of me with all of his books, but he just does, and he did it again, and I loved it. It wasn't only with the high school teacher part of the story; it was with the issues of relationships, with family, with following your dreams, with taking care of people we love, with so many things inside of this book. And yet it never, ever felt too heavy.There is a whole lotta story in this book, and it is such a good time. I know I keep talking about these characters and how much I love them, but I think that this book is so character-driven and heartwarming because of the people that make up the story. The thing that I love most about all of these characters is that they are all flawed, in need of connection, and seeking something more. I think the author did a great job with presenting these very-developed parts of these people, and I appreciate this because I feel each of these things too, just a little differently (and, you know, not fictionally). We all have different stories and this is theirs. Ultimately, to me, this book is about chance and also second chance. And love, all types of love. This book made me feel good, but there were points throughout that made me tear up and take a deep breath or two. That's how life is, right? YES. This is all exactly why I'm such a fan of this author's work. It feels very realistic to me and yet there is humor. There is humor to real life, see. I recommend Love May Fail by Matthew Quick for fans of second chances, great relationships, and great characterization. I love that Mr. Quick's books are all so different and yet they are all so very distinctly his voice. I think that fans of his other books will likely enjoy this one. I purchased this book in audiobook format as well because this will be a reread for me. Audiobook Notes: The audiobook format of Love May Fail by Matthew Quick is published by Harper Audio and is 12 hours and 5 minutes, Unabridged. It is narrated by a full cast, which works in particular in the case of this book's structure given that it is written in four parts, representing the four different storytellers. Each of the narrators are new to me and I liked them all very much. I have to say that listening to the story added another depth to it - I expected this - and it made certain characters practically leap off of the pages. In particular, I enjoyed Portia's mother even more because of hearing her, I think. I bought this audiobook to go along with my paperback and I loved this decision. I recommend this audio for those considering Love May Fail as a first-time read or a reread. I'll be listening in future rereads for sure.

  • Jason Shinkunas
    2019-06-15 20:24

    Loved the movie Silver Linings, but hadn't read Matthew Quick before, so I decided to give this one a shot. I gave up after two chapters. Cartoonish while attempting to be realistic, embarrassing while trying to be earnest. I don't get the fascination at all.

  • Bibi Larson
    2019-06-11 02:07

    This was such a good read, not the usual morbid, sad, and depressing theme that I expected from Matthew Quick. Loved it very much!!!