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Summary

An autobiographical novel about growing up gay in a working-class town in Picardy.

"Every morning in the bathroom I would repeat the same phrase to myself over and over again... Today I'm really gonna be a tough guy." Growing up in a poor village in northern France, all Eddy Bellegueule wanted was to be a man in the eyes of his family and neighbors. But from childhood, he was different - "girlish," intellectually precocious, and attracted to other men.

Already translated into twenty languages, The End of Eddy captures the violence and desperation of life in a French factory town. It is also a sensitive, universal portrait of boyhood and sexual awakening. Like Karl Ove Knausgaard or Edmund White, Édouard Louis writes from his own undisguised experience, but he writes with an openness and a compassionate intelligence that are all his own. The result - a critical and popular triumph - has made him the most celebrated French writer of his generation.

©2014 Éditions du Seuil (P)2017 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved. Translation © 2017 by Michael Lucey.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Keith G
  • 16-08-17

Not the usual gay novel found on Audible

This is a literary novel not a genre romance. From what I can tell due to subsequent reading, this work uses a very fuzzy line between memoir and novel. It is a somber yet exquisite work of literature set in an impoverished rural area of northern France in the late 1990s and a little beyond.

Any guy who has grown up with questions about his sexuality can find truth in this book. This is a story of a gay boy growing up without all the fluff and floss that seems to be attached to so much contemporary fiction, but also this book manages to not be morose..... just truthful.

I normally don't spend my resources on books that are this short in length. I'm very glad I took a chance on this. This is one of the best stories I have encountered. I imagine I'll be listening to it again and again.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Víctor Manuel Rentería López
  • 07-08-17

Excellent book and performance

This is the first book I have listened to completely in a row. The narration is very good and traps you easily. This might be because I felt very identified with it and was making me dig in my own memories.
I deeply recommend it.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Robert Yanal
  • 13-06-17

Eddy reinvents himself

What made the experience of listening to The End of Eddy the most enjoyable?

Discovering France outside Paris: an industrial town in the northeast, with working class folks, and a gay kid trying, not very successfully, to fit it.

What other book might you compare The End of Eddy to and why?

Strangely, some of David Sedaris's essay-books. Both Éduard Louis and Sedaris talk about themselves and their families. However, "The End of Eddy" is the reverse of Sedaris's books. While the characters in Sedaris's books are likable and the situations comic, the characters in "Eddy" are not particularly likable and the situations grim and sometimes tragic.

Have you listened to any of Graham Halstead’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No.

If you could take any character from The End of Eddy out to dinner, who would it be and why?

Eddy himself - now named Éduard Louis.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Michael
  • 03-11-17

Brutal, compassionate, and politically astute

Loius an marries insightful tale of adolescence with empathetic political analysis. Not to be missed.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful