Nathan is not ambitious, and he is perfectly happy doing nothing at the dusty and cluttered office of his boss, Dr. Behr, a quirky ex-literature professor pushing 80. Behr’s substantial inheritance in rental properties means during the day Nathan pushes papers and cuts up with his lone co-worker, Edward, and spends his nights attempting to appease his aloof and disenchanted girlfriend, Amy.
But things are about to get tossed in the air as Nathan and Edward uncover a mysterious plan of Behr’s to oust one of his renters for what appears to be a substantial but ill-gotten profit. Behr recruits his slacker employee to help in the plot, but as Nathan questions motives and discovers secrets, it is clear that Nathan might be in for surprises of his own.
Bizarre characters worthy of a Seinfeld episode on acid populate this “Literally Laugh Out Loud” tale of misadventure and intrigue. Brooklyn, England and Russia are all part of Nathan’s journey that holds the potential to change his life forever, so who does he trust in this Travels and Travails of Small Minds?
Charles and Sarah are a typical New York creative class couple — he’s in finance, she works at a hipster small press, yet both are indie-rock East Village veterans who aren’t above snorting a little heroin on the weekends. But when they decide to take the logical next step and buy a condo in one of the glass-and-steel skyscrapers now dotting the waterfront of Williamsburg, their lives start to fall apart almost the moment after they sign their mortgage; and this is to say nothing of their creepy neighbors, their possibly haunted apartment, job crises in both their industries, and former friends still in Manhattan who are determined to pull them back into the debauchery. A touching ode to the a–holes ruining Brooklyn, this literary debut of “the Millennial John Updike” is a funny yet wistful dramedy about young urban life during the Great Recession, and you do not need to be a New Yorker yourself to enjoy his smart insights about city living and growing older…although that certainly doesn’t hurt.