Official Review: Daddy 3.0 by Rob Armstrong

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Official Review: Daddy 3.0 by Rob Armstrong

Post by bookowlie » 03 Jan 2017, 18:50

[Following is the official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Daddy 3.0" by Rob Armstrong.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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Daddy 3.0: A Comedy of Errors by Rob Armstrong is a humorous novel about a New York City transplant’s experiences as Mr. Mom to his three-year-old twin daughters. Nick’s wife Liz has a surgical fellowship with long hours. After losing his tech job, Nick becomes the primary caregiver to his children, at least for the foreseeable future. Add a group of stay-at-home moms to the mix and you have the recipe for a first-rate comedy.

The highlights here are the author’s easygoing, conversational writing style and intelligent wit. I felt like the main character was an old friend chatting with me over coffee about the recent changes in his life - the move from San Francisco and being a stay-at-home dad. I quickly became absorbed in his daily challenges of taking care of the twins with little to no help from his wife.

Nick is a likable, nuanced character who finds himself in the unlikely position of navigating the waters of full-time childcare. It doesn’t help that his daughters Claire and Maude are often unruly in public. The twins’ antics in restaurants are vividly written, as plates go flying and a turtle is removed from a restaurant’s aquarium. I did find it a little unrealistic that financially-strapped Nick continued to dine out with his daughters so frequently, particularly knowing how they acted.

Liz is dismissive toward her husband and doesn’t seem interested in taking responsibility for her daughters except for the easy tasks. If the girls are disruptive at a restaurant in her presence, Liz would scold Nick as if he is not doing his “job.” In fact, she finds fault with pretty much everything he does, as does her rude, sarcastic family when they visit for Thanksgiving. I absolutely could not stand Liz and would have liked her to be less one-dimensional. Also, the use of epithets for the stay-at-home moms is a little annoying – for example, Supermom, Good Heart, Lion Tamer, and Nifty-Fifty Wife. It feels a little contrived and gives these supporting characters an impersonal feel.

The pacing is slow with overly detailed descriptions. The author paints a clear picture of a man adjusting to a different lifestyle and keeping his children busy on a shoestring budget. However, there is an overabundance of play-by-play action and dialogue in many scenes. I became impatient for the plot to move forward, even when the vignettes were interesting.

I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars. The writing sparkles and there are more than a few laugh-out-loud moments. There are a handful of technical errors (missing words, homophones, missing/extra apostrophes), although nothing that is too distracting. Fans of contemporary fiction would enjoy this story. I look forward to reading more books by this debut author.

******
Daddy 3.0
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Post by gali » 04 Jan 2017, 07:39

Sounds like a cute book. I am glad you enjoyed the book despite the slow pace.

Thank you for the great review!
In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you." (Mortimer J. Adler)

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Post by bookowlie » 04 Jan 2017, 10:51

Thanks Gali! It was odd - the writing was really good and the storyline was interesting. It's just that too many of the scenes went on too long.
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Post by LivreAmour217 » 04 Jan 2017, 11:16

Thank you for another insightful review, Bookowlie! I like the premise of this book, but I'm concerned about the drawn-out pace of the writing. I might give this one a chance, but there's a possibility that I'll end up not finishing it.
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Post by bookowlie » 04 Jan 2017, 11:25

Thanks Livre! It's hard to explain the pacing. I can't say that the writing dragged. Instead, it was more like the writing had a nice flow, but the scenes went on too long.
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Post by Wasif Ahmed » 04 Jan 2017, 12:29

Comedy is a genre i enjoy reading. I may give this book a try.
A great and well written review.
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Post by bookowlie » 08 Jan 2017, 12:09

Thanks Wasif! The book was very enjoyable even though I wanted to slap the wife and her family a few times. They were so rude and annoying!
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Post by klbradley » 09 Jan 2017, 22:48

Great review!
As a parent, I always enjoy hearing the funny tales that others share about their children. I'm sure this is one I would enjoy! My son is always entertaining, and his five-year-old sense of humor is the best! I'm looking foward to reading this one!
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Post by bookowlie » 10 Jan 2017, 09:35

Thanks! The kids' antics in the story are sometimes funny, the biggest laughs come from the interactions between the adults. :)
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Post by CatInTheHat » 12 Jan 2017, 14:16

bookowlie wrote:Thanks Wasif! The book was very enjoyable even though I wanted to slap the wife and her family a few times. They were so rude and annoying!
I love it when characters make me want to interact with them. In some ways, it makes them more real.
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Post by Elaine5 » 13 Jan 2017, 05:12

I haven't read a comedy in a while ... sounds like this might not be the one to read but I enjoyed your review.

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Post by bookowlie » 13 Jan 2017, 09:13

Thanks Elaine5 and CatintheHat for the nice feedback. :)
CatintheHat, the wife and her family seemed so over the top with their sarcastic, rude comments. I wish they would have been a little more appreciative of everything Nick did.
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Post by hsimone » 14 Jan 2017, 06:19

Another great review, bookowlie! I don't think I've read a Mr. Mom story before, but it seems like a good comedy. I can understand that if his girls are unruly in public, then it would be unrealistic that Nick would take them out often. Too bad about the pacing and errors, but I'm glad that you were able to enjoy it!
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Post by Hneite » 14 Jan 2017, 06:26

This book is probably not for me. Kids humorous antics might be fun but not combined with a somewhat slow pace and contemporary setting. I can't really relate to single dads. So I'm gonna pass on this one. Great rewiev though.

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Post by jamesabr » 14 Jan 2017, 06:41

Liz's character sounds absolutely flat and dreadful, but the idea of a dad among stay-at-homes sounds like it could be great fun! Can you tell me why he's called Daddy 3.0 instead of 2.0, or should I read the book to find out?

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