The Hearts of Men

  • by Nickolas Butler
  • Narrated by Adam Verner
  • 11 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Camp Chippewa, 1962. Nelson Doughty, age 13, social outcast and overachiever, is the bugler, sounding the reveille proudly each morning. Yet this particular summer marks the beginning of an uncertain and tenuous friendship with a popular boy named Jonathan.
Over the years Nelson, irrevocably scarred from the Vietnam War, becomes scoutmaster of Camp Chippewa while Jonathan marries, divorces, and turns his father's business into a highly profitable company. And when something unthinkable happens at a camp get-together with Nelson as scoutmaster and Jonathan's teenage grandson and daughter-in-law as campers, the aftermath demonstrates the depths - and the limits - of Nelson's selflessness and bravery.
The Hearts of Men is a sweeping, panoramic novel about the slippery definitions of good and evil, family and fidelity, the challenges and rewards of lifelong friendships, the bounds of morality - and redemption.


What the Critics Say

"[Narrator Adam] Verner brings the necessary pathos to a story that spans decades. He ably gives life to these boys who become men and to the boys that follow. Butler's story, as read by Verner, examines what it means to be a man, exploring the ideas of family, friendship, morality, and bravery." (AudioFile)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Sad, but not hopeless

I almost stopped listening to this one in the opening chapters, because it was just so sad (I was aching for Nelson and his desire for friends ), and also during a truely awful scene between rival scout troops. So glad I stuck with it - credit the excellent narration and the good writing - because I really liked this character-based story.
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- Ruth Bain

Tightly wrought unflashy character driven

In this Richard Fordesque novel, Nickolas Butler has given us a tightly woven, character driven novel, a novel that begins in 1962, takes an interlude in 1996, and then finishes in 2019. This is about heroism, family, friendship, love. The story may not be flashy or exciting but it is definitely very instructive, there is wisdom here. The narrative performance was decent as the baritone voice had trouble modulating multiple male voices, some which sounded like radio announcers.
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- Jeff Lacy

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-07-2017
  • Publisher: HarperAudio