How to Talk to a Widower

  • by Jonathan Tropper
  • Narrated by Eric Ruben
  • 7 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Doug Parker is a widower at age 29, and in his quiet suburban town, that makes him something of a celebrity - the object of sympathy, curiosity, and, in some cases, unbridled desire. But Doug has other things on his mind.First, there's his 16-year-old stepson, Russ - a once-sweet kid who now is getting into increasingly serious trouble on a daily basis. Then there are Doug's sisters: his bossy twin, Claire, who's just left her husband and moved in with Doug, determined to rouse him from his grieving stupor. And Debbie, who's engaged to Doug's ex-best friend and maniacally determined to pull off the perfect wedding at any cost.Soon Doug's entire nuclear family is in his face. And when he starts dipping his toes into the shark-infested waters of the second-time-around dating scene, it isn't long before his new life is spinning hopelessly out of control, cutting a harrowing and often hilarious swath of sexual missteps and escalating chaos across the suburban landscape.Funny, sexy, and smart, How to Talk to a Widower is a novel about finding your way, even when you have no idea where it is you want to go.

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What the Critics Say

"Alternately flippant and sad, Tropper's book is a smart comedy of inappropriate behavior at an inopportune time." (Publishers Weekly)
"Tropper has the twentysomething guy thing down to a science. His prose is funny and insightful, his characters quirky and just a bit off-balance but decent enough to take to our hearts." (Booklist)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

The Characters Have Character

Jonathan Tropper created such memorable characters, I can't seem to shake them and I'm hopeful he'll write about them again. The book was wonderful -- he captured how annihilating losing a spouse can be. There are some very poignant moments. The family was a stitch as well as a heart breaker.

I have read Tropper's books and find them hysterical and thought-provoking. I listened to one other of Tropper's which was narrated by Scott Brick. He is a very talented and popular narrator. However, in my opinion, he does not have comedic timing. Eric Ruben, on the other hand, is terrific and I found myself laughing out loud many times. He was excellent. He really added to the book and I'm hopeful that future books by this author will be read by Ruben or others rather than using Brick.

This is a book I will listen to again and encourage you to spend the credit.
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- Zan "Love novels, love to laugh."

Sad Drunken Sap

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yea, I really liked this listen. At only 26 Doug has fallen hard for Hailey only to become a widower a few years later. At 29 he is a step father, well sort of; he is terribly depressed and drunk all the time. He is consumed by grief and unable to cope with being responsible for himself let alone another person. Now this should make for just a sad, sad, tale but Jonathan Tropper has a brilliant way of making you laugh and pulling you in because there is more to Doug than just grief. He has a lovable family with big personalities; a stoner stepson that is so broken and sweet and just missing his mom; and Hailey's ex whom, well, he doesn't have many redeeming characterists. And there is Doug and his "total" journey which includes everything from sadness, laugh out loud moments to my favorite- going down memory lane and getting to know Hailey a bit. The book also definitely had some great tips about what NOT to ask someone going thru grief.


What was one of the most memorable moments of How to Talk to a Widower?

When he's caught in bed, drunk in his tighty whiteys, with a bottle between his legs and a picture of his date on his chest. Oh did I mention that this was at his blind date's house? I cringed for him, then laughed!!


What does Eric Ruben bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Great voice!


Any additional comments?

Awesome listen and not a waste of time or credit!

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- Mon "12 step program please. I am addicted to Audible! I love trashy sexy books, award winning novels and everything between. Bring it!"

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-01-2008
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio