Customer Reviews for

Confessions of a Contractor

Average Rating 3.5
( 13 )
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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2008

    John Cheever Would Love This Book

    John Cheever says that the hallmark of good fiction is when the action on the surface of the narrative is underlined by deeper meaning below the surface. Confessions of a Contractor has that in spades. On the surface, it is a romp through the lives of LA's too-wealthy-to-give-a-crap-about-money set, and as such it holds up hilariously. But Confessions is much more psychologically astute than just that. The novel is really about the unfulfilled needs and desires we all have, but that wealthy people try to fill up with the right tile for the bathroom and a new addition to the guest house. Murphy very cleverly shows that, once the basic human needs of food, shelter and clothing are met, if the more basic human need for love goes unfulfilled, no amount of expensive food, shelter or clothing is going to fill that aching void. A very exciting first novel. I can't wait for more.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2008

    An inside look into the lives ... and homes ... in LA

    Confessions of a Contractor: a novel, by Richard Murphy, is a solid book in a shiny red jacket that is a pleasure to hold, to read, and to get lost in its pages. The protagonist, a simple man who lives in an apartment and drives his father¿s beat-up pickup truck, shows appropriate yet clear insight into the lives of the families that he works for/with. As he reconstructs their houses, he deconstructs their lives and tweaks their circumstances here and there, as he sees fit, to improve their marriages, their relationships, their lots in life. Until he meets Sally Stein. Sally is the challenge, the opportunity, the reason that he begins to look outside his ordered life and wonder what pieces he has been missing. His work for and with her changes him, and he is caught off guard a little by that. The developments that ensue are thrilling if mundane, and totally believable. Confessions of a Contractor is a book that kept my attention long past my expectations. It drew me in with its frank confessions about renovating a house and renovating a family, and it kept my attention with a well-paced story and engaging characters. Whether the subject is the women overseeing the renovations, their busy or missing husbands, or the contractors themselves, the author peppers the story with unexpected revelations that work on both a personal and a professional level. Whether you¿re considering renovating, wondering how to prepare to meet the contractor, or just intrigued with the world of the uber-rich in LA (and the contractors who work in their homes), this is a book that will keep you reading well past lights-out.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 3, 2009

    Excellent Read

    Cleverly written with great characters that you actually care about. Hurrah for his first novel, I can't wait for more.

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