The Slob by Aron Beauregard

Vera Harlow is a sweet lady, compassionate and kind. While she has certain quirks and residual coping mechanisms associated with a childhood stifled by unhealthy surroundings brought about by mental illness, she has managed to not only thrive, but to transform her trauma responses into strengths. The time we spend getting to know Vera, delving into her tragic backstory and the wholesome life she and her husband have built for themselves, ultimately makes everything else in this book all the more awful.
Going door-to-door, selling a new carpet cleaner with effectiveness only someone who prizes cleanliness could manage, Vera has built up a tidy sum. With a new child on the way, she has a limited interval before she has to stop venturing out like she has been. It’s her final day of sales when she decides to venture down the dead-end road to the ramshackle house where the titular Slob resides. Why do we call him The Slob? It’s an excellent question, one Beauregard spends almost three full pages answering, as he describes the man in vivid and repulsive detail.
As with Vera, as the keys turn in the locks that secure the front door of The Slob’s home, we’re trapped and plagued with an increasingly uneasy feeling that will prove to be all too prescient. The filth and madness of Vera’s early life prepared her for a great deal, but nothing could prepare anyone for being trapped with The Slob.
Beauregard’s vividly detailed and gripping narrative is a masterpiece of transformative pain and horror that will make you want to scrub your walls and floors until everything is spotless, but after reading The Slob, you will probably never feel clean again.

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