A Novel

Book - 2017
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Receiving an invitation to his ex-boyfriend's wedding, Arthur, a failed novelist on the eve of his fiftieth birthday, embarks on an international journey that finds him falling in love, risking his life, reinventing himself, and making connections with the past.
Publisher: New York :, A Lee Boudreaux Book, Little, Brown and Company,, 2017
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780316316125
Characteristics: 263 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm


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List - Best of 2017
RCPL_Librarians Nov 26, 2017


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May 06, 2018

It almost has "A Man Called Ove" vibe to it. Sensitive, sweet, humorous...Sequencing the story through his visits to various continents with intertwinings of his romantic relationships, combined with his quips and thoughts on aging made for an endearing, lively piece.

May 04, 2018

As cliché as it sounds, this literary romance has heart and humanity. Arthur Less is at his personal and professional wit's end. He's been unable to convince his long-time publisher to greenlight his newest book, and his most successful relationships are all in the past. He has no one to whom he is very close, no family, and the gay community calls.him a "bad gay" for how he's been portraying them in his work. In order to do something with himself, and also to avoid going to an ex's wedding, he goes on a globetrotting trip, taking temporary academic positions others have passed on (and he normally would, too).

Greer knows how to turn a phrase, but there isn't much story here. Less moves from one mini-adventure to another, and the spiritual payoff just seems to occur because that's just what happens in stories like this. I wasn't invested too much. The jacket blurbs suggest this will have you rolling in laughter. I chuckled a bit, but I found it more heartwarming (genuinely so) than funny.

I must say that my review is tepid not because this won the Pulitzer and I'm going against the grain, but because this is my genuinely reaction to the novel. It's a pretty average book.

debwalker Apr 18, 2018

Just won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. The committee calls it “a generous book, musical in its prose and expansive in its structure and range, about growing older and the essential nature of love.”

Apr 13, 2018

So good!!!

Nicr Apr 06, 2018

Arthur Less, a writer of the "famous Russian River School," is traveling the world, having escaped a former lover's wedding by accepting every professional invitation that had been accumulating on his desk. His publisher has rejected his latest novel; a rival tells him that as a writer he's "a bad gay" (his characters incline to the morose); he's awaiting his fiftieth birthday. Chapter by chapter, country by country, his funny, insecure, very human adventures follow. A truly endearing character.

AL_ANNAL Mar 27, 2018

Sophisticated and sweet, this comic novel about a self deprecating, charming novelist is a delight. His anxieties are not because he's gay but because he's psychologically open and unprotected. It's a pleasure to read of his loves, friendships, and adventures.

Mar 11, 2018

So I, as an old lady but avid reader, am in the minority....yes, the characters strike a
chord and yes, there is amusing dialog and clever style...but no where on the jacket
is one alerted to the fact that this is a book very focused on homosexual love life with
all its trials and tribulations. More bed descriptions and sex than I think was needed
to tell the real story: mild failure to achieve peeking over the horizon and haunting a nice fellow whose claim to fame seems to have boiled down to having been the shocking young lover of a really (as in Pulitzer) poet, decades his elder. Anyway, BE AWARE if this type of romance novel is not your thing, don't bother checking it out.

Dec 10, 2017

lovely, to be read slowly

Nov 05, 2017

Beautiful book (including cover illustration and nifty line drawing at each chapter title)! I tried to decipher who the heck narrator is (- one of Less’s former crush, final spouse?), until “Less At Last”...what a bummer. All the luck upon the Ar/uthur - all things Less! I turned my envy about fragile sentiment to jealous over saccharine romance, wish to sprinkle bitterness to be more palatable.

fiddlelaura Nov 04, 2017

I loved this book! It felt so fresh and surprising. Greer’s word choice made me grin with delight over and over again. Everything about it felt inventive, from the choice of narration to the ingenious metaphors and imagery. It was a wry, warm and witty examination of aging, writing, and relationships. When I finished it I wanted to hug the book and then start rereading it. I listened and read it simultaneously and Robert Petkoff did another great job as reader. Listening to Less tickled my ears and woke my mind. Reading Less warmed my heart. I haven’t read any other reviews, and even though I know this must have been written many times already, I can’t help myself; Less is more.

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Jul 25, 2017

samrouthier thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over


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