I could repeat what I said about the last one with regards to this, as this was like it, only more so. To quote one of the review blurbs on the back cover: "On Edward's fortieth birthday, his estranged wife, Elise, appears unannounced at the door, triggering a series of events that will involve the couple in a bizarre triangle and lay open the workings of a fifteen year marriage."
I guess that's one way of putting it. These people were unsympathetic and often downright bizarre, toiling through a plot that was...I don't even know what it was. I liked this less than the other books of Barthelme's that I have read (obviously). The saving grace was some salvageable commentary on expectations, relationships, love and sexuality. Unfortunately, as I couldn't help but keep thinking as I was working my way through this, the nice bits were buried in way too much not-so-good book. My opinion, anyway.
This gets me to 14 books and 2 partial story collections on the year, totaling a shade under 4,300 pages. Best book of the year so far is still The Painter.