Why Don’t You Love Me? by Paul B. Rainey
Hardcover – Drawn + Quarterly – Jan 2023 – 214 pages
Claire and Mark are in the doldrums of an unhappy marriage. She doesn’t get out of her bathrobe and chain-smokes while slumped on the couch. Mark has lost track of the days and can’t get the kids to school on time. They’ve lost interest in family and have pizza and Chinese food delivered every night. Mark sleeps on the couch and has trouble remembering his son’s name. He feels like a fraud at work but somehow succeeds. Claire stalks an ex-boyfriend. How could he have left her to this life?
Claire and Mark are both plagued by the idea that this is all a dream. Didn’t they have different lives? When reports of an imminent nuclear war come on the radio, the truth begins to dawn on them: This is not the life they chose.
Why Don’t You Love Me? is a pitch-black comedy about marriage, alcoholism, depression, and mourning lost opportunities. Paul B. Rainey has created a hilariously terrifying alternate reality where confusion and pain might lead people to make bad choices but might also eventually led to freedom . . . maybe.