Book Review: The Guncle

A guncle, aka gay uncle, is the term of endearment bestowed upon a parent’s bestie who has no kids of his own but showers theirs with gifts and attention. Patrick is just that, but he’s also Maisie and Grant’s actual uncle since his college best friend, Sara, married his brother, adding another layer to their relationship. Patrick had a very successful Hollywood sitcom run but has since hermited himself away in Palm Springs to escape his own demons. Nevertheless, it’s he who swoops in when Sara dies and the kids need a caregiver for the summer. Through a series of Guncle Rules, Patrick fits Maisie and Grant into his caftan-filled life and together they work through their grief.

I really liked that this is not about someone magically discovering maturity and becoming a hot young parent. This is not Raising Helen. (Great movie, but not what we need here.) It’s a more realistic setup, especially when it comes to money. These children still have a father (just one who needs some time) and Patrick (for the most part) has his life together. This is a story about loving one another as we are, flaws and all. It’s about demanding what you’re worth (and what you need for your mental health) and compromising your way to a new normal where you get just that.

3.75 out of 5 stars. (Took away points only because it didn’t absolutely blow me away, but I found it really heartwarming.)

Pair with: Aperol spritz