April 2019 Indie Next List
“In her sharply imagined, comedic novel, Somers tackles with effortless finesse the #MeToo issue of sexual misconduct in the entertainment industry. When 29-year-old June Bloom accepts an invitation from comedian Hugo Best, her childhood idol (and recent boss), to spend a long holiday weekend at his country mansion, she finds herself privy to the messy complexities of his personal life. Refusing any facile judgements or conclusions, Stay Up With Hugo Best explores the complexities of people and relationships, and the many shades of gray that make us all human. A fantastic, thoroughly enjoyable debut!”
— Michaela Carter, Peregrine Book Company, Prescott, AZ
An incredibly timely, terrifically witty and moving debut about a young writers' assistant on a late night comedy show and what transpires when she accepts an invitation from its enigmatic host to spend a long weekend at his mansion in Connecticut.June Bloom is a broke, cynical twenty-nine-year-old writers' assistant on the late-night comedy show, Stay Up with Hugo Best. Hugo Best is in his sixties, a beloved icon of TV and humor, and a notorious womanizer. After he unexpectedly retires and a party is held for his now unemployed staff, June ends up at a dive bar for an open-mic night and prepares for the sad return to the anonymous comedian lifestyle. What she's not prepared for is a run-in with Hugo at that dive bar. Nor for the invitation that swiftly follows: Hugo asks June to come to his mansion in Greenwich for the long Memorial Day weekend. "No funny business," he insists. June, in need of a job and money, confident she can handle herself, but secretly harboring the remains of a childhood crush on the charming older comedian and former role model, accepts. The exact terms of the visit are never spelled out, but June is realistic and clear-eyed enough to guess. Even so, as the weekend unfolds and the enigmatic Hugo gradually reveals himself, their dynamic proves to be much more complicated and less predictable than she expected. At once hilarious and poignant, brilliantly incisive and terrifically propulsive, Stay Up with Hugo Best is an incredibly timely exploration of sexual politics in the #MeToo age, and the unforgettable story of one young woman's poignant stumbling into adulthood.