Hating Olivia: A Love Story

Hating Olivia: A Love Story

by Mark SaFranko

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780061979194
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 11/16/2010
Series: P.S. Series
Pages: 262
Product dimensions: 8.24(w) x 11.68(h) x 0.71(d)

About the Author

Mark SaFranko is an American author, playwright, artist, and musician. He was cited in The Best American Mystery Stories 2000 and has been nominated for two Pushcart Prizes. He is the author of five published novels—Hating Olivia, Lounge Lizard, God Bless America, Hopler's Statement, and The Favor—and has written dozens more. He lives with his wife and son in New Jersey.

What People are Saying About This

Mary Dearborn

Hating Olivia is a remarkable tale of obsession and lust, a stunning portrait of a dangerously alienated hero masterfully told. You will not be able to put it down.”

Tony O'Neill

“... a book of quiet horrors and beautifully expressed longing... SaFranko’s prose is precise, flawless and the work of a man who truly loves and understands great writing.”

Susan Tomaselli

“SaFranko writes from the heart, and the balls, crafting a furious and passionate piece of work that is entirely his own, with some scenes that would make even Bukowski blush.”

Mike Ferraro

“Throughout Hating Olivia, SaFranko shows his versatility and skill as a writer by making something supremely difficult look easy as hell.”

Dan Fante

“Hating Olivia is the kind of book - the kind of memoir - that must have been lived first. Survived. So strap yourself in. It’s time for a real treat.”

Customer Reviews

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Hating Olivia 3.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
TiBookChatter More than 1 year ago
Max is the type of guy who cruises through life. He's educated, but unfocused. He would rather write, than make ends meet but the writing doesn't happen too often. Although a bit unstable when it comes to finances, overall he's a pretty happy guy. Enter Olivia Aphrodite. Olivia is drop-dead gorgeous. She too, is not too stable in the finance department and has made a living working dead-end jobs and letting men (with money), take "care" of her. Although their personalities are quite different, Max and Olivia move in together and it goes downhill from there. The story is told from Max's point of view so what we get is the incredible frustration he experiences in loving a creature like Olivia. Max is consumed by her and completely obsessed with her. As their relationship progresses, he realizes that he needs to break it off, but how? How does one extract himself from an addiction such as this? I must tell you right off, that there is a lot of sex in this little novel. A lot of sex, and a lot of language that you may not be comfortable with. Putting that aside, I found myself able to relate to both characters. Although you may never experience a relationship such as the one Max has with Olivia, you've probably known someone who has. The story is a bit repetitive because this couple flounders over and over again while trying to make it work. But there was something about the novel that kept me reading. Perhaps, I wanted Max to find a way out. Perhaps it was a bit like watching a train wreck. Either way, I could not pull myself away from the novel and found myself completely wrapped-up in the story. The writing is tight and the characters never waver. Also, Max is quite the reader so there are lots of literary references that you might enjoy. Overall, I enjoyed reading it even though it's not something I would have normally picked-up on my own.
ABookGeek on LibraryThing 26 days ago
This book initially sounded intriguing, but somehow it was different than I expected. I'm torn on this one. There are things that I liked about the book, but the characters were not really very likeable. Olivia is just trouble from the get-go. I also would not call Max and Olivia' relationship "love" in any real sense - obessession, most definitely - but not love. The story is told from Max's point of view, so we only get his interpretation of Olivia's motives for her behavior. Max is just this guy who reads all the time and thinks he is too smart or too good to work like everyone else, so he holds down a series of low-level, unchallenging jobs to pay the bills --- but only when he has to. He would prefer to let Olivia support him while he spends his time reading and supposedly working on his novel. For most of the book, Max gets nothing useful done. All he cares about is not being required to actually work and having sex with Olivia. And occasionally talking about writing his book. He knows he is just stumbling through his life, but he keeps doing it. The relationship that Max and Olivia have is just so wrong on so many levels. They are one of those couples that bring out the worst in each other. We've all known a couple or possibly been part of such a couple. It is painful to watch and it was painful to read about them. But here's the thing -- I couldn't put the book down once I got a couple of chapter into it. Not much happens, and while I didn't really like Max or Olivia much, I thought Max was pretty funny and the writing is very good. There are lots of literary references throughout the book, which were fun. And, I wanted to see if Max and/or Olivia made it through to the other side of their completely awful relationship. Review copy provided by Harper Perennial.
tibobi on LibraryThing 26 days ago
The Short of It:Hating Olivia is about obsession and lust and how easily we can lose ourselves when we are confronted with it.The Rest of It:Max is the type of guy who cruises through life. He¿s educated, but unfocused. He would rather write, than make ends meet but the writing doesn¿t happen too often. Although a bit unstable when it comes to finances, overall he¿s a pretty happy guy.Enter Olivia Aphrodite. Olivia is drop-dead gorgeous. She too, is not too stable in the finance department and has made a living working dead-end jobs and letting men (with money), take ¿care¿ of her.Although their personalities are quite different, Max and Olivia move in together and it goes downhill from there.The story is told from Max¿s point of view so what we get is the incredible frustration he experiences in loving a creature like Olivia. Max is consumed by her and completely obsessed with her. As their relationship progresses, he realizes that he needs to break it off, but how? How does one extract himself from an addiction such as this?I must tell you right off, that there is a lot of sex in this little novel. A lot of sex, and a lot of language that you may not be comfortable with. Putting that aside, I found myself able to relate to both characters. Although you may never experience a relationship such as the one Max has with Olivia, you¿ve probably known someone who has.The story is a bit repetitive because this couple flounders over and over again while trying to make it work. But there was something about the novel that kept me reading. Perhaps, I wanted Max to find a way out. Perhaps it was a bit like watching a train wreck. Either way, I could not pull myself away from the novel and found myself completely wrapped-up in the story.The writing is tight and the characters never waver. Also, Max is quite the reader so there are lots of literary references that you might enjoy. Overall, I enjoyed reading it even though it¿s not something I would have normally picked-up on my own.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
grumpydan More than 1 year ago
Max is an aspiring writer and sometimes musician when he meets Olivia. Why such a beautiful woman would want him is beyond him but he isn't complaining. She too is an aspiring writer. The story follows their four years together not writing, always having sex and sometimes working. These two are certainly not ambitious and wild sex is what keeps them going. A relationship based o n sex is certainly doomed and the couple becomes wary as the money runs out and their nerves are frayed. Set in 1970's New Jersey, This novel is sexually explicit but also a look into relationships. As I read chapter after chapter I wondered when Max begins Hating Olivia.