May 052012


Oxford Messed Up by Andrea Kayne Kaufman

Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher: Grant Place Press (November 17, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0984675108
ISBN-13: 978-0984675104


Oxford Messed Up is a unique literary love story that transports readers on a meaningful and emotional journey where the academic world of Oxford, the music of Van Morrison, and an old claw-foot bathtub serve as a backdrop for learning, self-discovery, and transcendent love. Rhodes Scholar Gloria Zimmerman is an academic superstar who has come to Oxford University to study feminist poetry. Yet the rigors of the academy pale in comparison to her untreated Obsessive-Compulsive

Disorder, fueled by her overachieving parents and manifested in a deathly aversion to germs and human contact. Her next-door neighbor (who is also, to her mortification, her loomate) is Henry Young, the appealing but underachieving musician son of an overbearing and disapproving Oxford don. Still mourning the death of his supportive mother while enduring the mockery of his disapproving and merciless father, Henry is haunted by the unexpectedly serious ramifications of a reckless and tragic youth. Gloria and Henry’s relationship evolves from a shared obsession with Van Morrison’s music into a desire on the part of each to fill in the gaps in the life of the other. Yet the constraints of a debilitating illness and the looming revelation of a catastrophic secret conspire to throw their worlds into upheaval and threaten the possibilities of their unlikely yet redemptive love.

This is one of the strangest books I’ve ever read. It took me quite a few pages to get into it. Once you reach that point though, it’s one of those books that keep you on an emotional roller coaster. It’s got love, music, poetry, and even some OCD.

Another thing it has is words that are repeated and then repeated some more. Drove me kinda nuts. But, if you can get past that, the book is interesting, to say the least. And I loved the short chapters.

The characters are most definitely life like. They have their own quirks, emotional strengths and weaknesses and like us all, doubts about ourselves.

If you’re looking for a read that is a little different, this is the book. If you’re looking for a read that will make you feel all kinds of emotions, this is the book. If you’re looking for a  read that will make you carry the characters with you long after you’ve read the last word, this is the book.

About The Author:
As both an educator and attorney, Andrea Kayne Kaufman has worked closely on issues relating to Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD).
Kaufman is currently the chair of the Department of Leadership, Language and Curriculum at the DePaul University College of Education in Chicago. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Vassar College, a master’s degree in Education from Harvard University, and a Juris Doctor from the University of Pennsylvania Law School.

She lives with her husband and two children in Chicago.

Andrea will be offering the Ebook edition for $ .99 on Amazon from May Day thru Cinco de Mayo – May 1-5.

This title was just awarded the Best Adult Fiction E-Book Gold Medal in the “IPPY” Awards.
For 16 years the Independent Publisher Book Awards have been conducted annually to honor the year’s best independently published titles. The “IPPY” Awards reward those who exhibit the courage, innovation, and creativity to bring about change in the world of publishing.

  3 Responses to “Oxford Messed Up by Andrea Kayne Kaufman”

  1. Hi Vicki,

    For a debut novel, this one sounds like a really well researched and meaningful story, which runs the full gamut of emotions.

    I have just checked out a preview of the new book that Andrea is working on ‘Parent Over Shoulder’ and although completely different in storyline, it sounds equally as deep and meaningful.

    I too, quite like books with short chapters, so long as the content within those few pages is rich and worthwhile. I am sure that some authors write shorter chapters just to add a few extra pages to the overall content page value, and that doesn’t sit too well with me, I’m afraid.

    Sometimes I have such a timed and organised regime going on, that hubbie will pass comment to the affect that I probably have some form of OCD. I usually shrug it off, but if I sit and actually analyse my actions, I can see where he is coming from!

    I guess I really need to add this book to my reading list, even though I may get a little uncomfortable whilst reading it.

    Thanks for a nice review,


  2. […] second one was Oxford Messed Up by Andrea Kayne Kaufman and boy was it different. A good different though, it’s got love and […]

  3. […]  Oxford Messed Up by Andrea Kayne […]

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.