A poignant and satirical tale of one man's struggle to overcome the ghosts of his past and make sense of the present. In this, his third novel, acclaimed author Mark Merlis artfully intertwines the pathos of loneliness with a subtle critique of the American political machine. Joel Lingeman has been set adrift. Until recently, life was 'relative contentedness'; working for Congress, frequenting the Hill club a little too frequently, cooking dinner for two every night and routine sex on Sundays. Now Sam, his lover of fifteen years, has left him for a stunning twenty-three year old and he cannot score a trick in the sleaziest pick-up joint in town. Joel's revulsion for the politics around him has dissipated into mild amusement at the 'social Darwinists' ready to snatch the last cents from the hands of the old and ailing. And he is increasingly obsessed by the different lives he could have led. When a teenage fantasy reasserts itself, the blond haired demi-god his eye once fell upon modelling swimsuits in the back of an old magazine, Joel is overcome by a pervasive sense of loss and embarks on a quest to hunt down 'the Santa Fe boy'. Astutely observed and resonant with dark, sardonic undertones, Man About Town is an unforgettable novel about losing your way, your self-esteem and your security.