Tommy's Tale

  • by Alan Cumming
  • Narrated by Alan Cumming
  • 6 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Tommy is 29, lives and loves in London, and has a morbid fear of the "C" word (commitment), the "B" word (boyfriend), and the "F" word (forgetting to call his drug dealer before the weekend). But when he begins to feel the urge to become a father, and the pressure from his boyfriend to make a real commitment to their relationship, Tommy starts to wonder if his chosen lifestyle can ever make him happy.
Faced with the choice between maintaining his hedonistic, drugged-out, and admittedly fabulous existence or chucking it all in favor of a far more sensitive, fulfilling, and - let's face it - slightly more staid lifestyle, Tommy finds himself in a true quandary. Through a series of adventures and misadventures that lead him from London nightspots to New York bedrooms and back, our boy Tommy manages to answer some of life's most pressing questions - even those he never thought to ask.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

weird, fun, but sort of messed up

I wanted to love this book so much more than I did. Unfortunately, there's this weird element to it that makes it really uncomfortable- Tommy, the main character, is a man on a rampage, circling an emotional breakdown while doing all the drugs and having all the sex... and that's fine. Alan Cumming plays intelligently with the idea of debauchery and condemnation, presenting a character who does salacious and irresponsible things and doesn't ask for- no, outright mocks the idea that he could gain the audience's approval.

HOWEVER, what ends up happening, is the story takes a weird turn into really glorifying his (terrible! terrible!) choices. His 'you can't judge me, the messed up ones in this society are YOU for never having LIVED' attitude becomes... I'm struggling to put my finger on this, but becomes somehow validated by the text. The ending made me super uncomfortable.

So, on the one hand, I love this, because it's a warm, funny glimpse into a subculture that doesn't get a lot of attention, but on the other I was left with a bit of a knot in my stomach and wanting to shake the protagonist for being so bloody sanctimonious about it all. I'll still count this as a great book, but my enjoyment of the story over all was diminished by the intense feeling of wanting to slap poor Tommy.
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- undrwo

Really enjoyed it.

Let me state this first: if you are put off by drug use and/or sex (both hetero and homo, both intimate and anonymous), you will not like this book. I am put off by neither, and I really enjoyed it.

As the summary says, the book follows a few months in the life of a 29 year-old self-proclaimed party boy in London. There are clubs, drugs, parties, and some seriously seedy behavior in the disabled loo. You'll learn about lampshade design, hangover avoidance, the power of baths, and the emotional blackmail of a particularly precocious child.

I think Alan Cumming is the best (or certainly one of the best) book readers out there, and if you enjoy him as an actor, performer, activist, and human, you will likely enjoy this book, too. I'll admit my bias here — I adore him — and I loved Tommy's Tale.
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- dinogirl

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-13-2012
  • Publisher: HarperAudio