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Holding the Man Paperback – August 31, 2007


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Cuttyhunk Books (August 31, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0978825950
  • ISBN-13: 978-0978825959
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,714,807 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"A remarkable achievement. With the Rolling Stones, Bryan Ferry, Violent Femmes, and INXS in the background, this memoir of a young man's coming of age at an all-boys Catholic High School is, above all, a stunning and engrossing love story." --Paul Breines, Boston College

"Full of candor, passion, and zest for life." --Leslie Cartwright, The Australian

"Amazingly more than the sum of its parts, a book to stir you up and knock you around and wring you out." --Peter Robb, Independent Monthly

About the Author

Timothy Conigrave was born in 1959 in Melbourne, Australia and educated at Xavier College and Monash University. He trained as an actor at the National Institute of Dramatic Art, graduating in 1984. He appeared in such plays as Brighton Beach Memoirs and As Is. He initiated the project Soft Targets and his other plays include Blitz Kids and Thieving Boy

A film based upon the original book edition of Holding the Man is in development.


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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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The final chapter will bring tears to your eyes.
Warren Penna
It is a reminder of the great loss the world has suffered from AIDS, and an amazing powerful love story.
Samuel E. Slater
I would give this book to all of my friends who want to know more about gay love.
Craig Choy

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Denny L. Tranel on April 3, 2005
Format: Paperback
Tim gave this last performance his all. I have not found a book that so accurately describes my experience as a catholic boy coming out of the closet. He puts honest and sincere emotion and truth on paper in such a way that it stirs the very core of my being.

Tim, without shame, provides a look into gay life style, including struggling with sex outside the relationship. As he describes his struggle between loving his partner and searching for "more", i found myself. As he writes his final good bye letter after his lovers death from AIDS, I found myself calling my partner from Iraq, in tears, and making sure that he knew how much I love him.

This book will stir your soul. It will leave you in deep thought and will offer you the chance to shift, to change and to embrace your sexuality. It will help you to understand the importance of intimacy and unconditional love. It will allow your humanness.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 20, 2001
Format: Paperback
I am a straight man. When my little brother told me he is gay, I started to look for literature to more understand him. This book has definately helped me to see him from different perspective. This book teaches me that he deserves happiness and we have no right whatsoever to judge a person from his sexual preference. Tim and John had very difficult times dealing with their family, and I do not want this happens to my brother. My love for my brother is even stronger after reading this book.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By H. F. Corbin TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 22, 2001
Format: Paperback
I found Holding the Man in a little bookshop in Melbourne this March. I had read many "AIDS" memoirs-- including Paul Monette's Borrowed Time: An AIDS Memoir and the very fine Heaven's Coast" A Memoir by Mark Doty and thought there was nothing else to be said on the subject. I was wrong. I cannot say enough good things about this book. It is so well written. In addition to being a poignant account of a beautiful love affair and sad, sad, death in the time of AIDS, it is a quite wonderful account of what it is like to be a gay teen as well. When I finished the book-- and yes, it will make you cry-- I felt an overwhelming sadness that this young man will never write again and that both these young men's lives were snuffed out at such an early age. And I wanted to see John's beautiful eyelashes. [....]
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By tao_il@hotmail.com on February 15, 2000
Format: Paperback
I was given this book by a dear friend of mine who warned me not to bother with a box of kleenex, and to rather go for a towel.Good advice! I read the book cover to cover in one night and midway through I discrded the kleenex in favour of the towel, each time I have read it since I have opted for the towel from the start
Without a doubt one of the most moving and beautifully written books to deal with the subject of AIDS, homosexuality, comng out and the ups and downs of any relationship.
Contrary to what some might feel, not all gay men have a difficult "coming out" some of us actually do get amazing support and acceptance from our friends.
Tim and John shared a love that most people can only aspire to, maybe they had some rough times that Tim glossed over or neglected to include... kudo's to him! there is enough anger and bitterness in the world, I thank him for allowing us a glimpse into his beautiful world with John.
The world is a darker place without the light of Timothy Conigrave's talent. Rest in Peace both of you, together in eternity.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 14, 1999
Format: Paperback
What can I say other than this is the best gay book i ever read. Tim and John's relationship is an example of wonderful yet tragic beauty. I cried many times, smiled many other times... I had flash backs of my teen years when I was madly in love with a classmate in a french catholic school in Lebanon.
The beauty of this book is in it's reality and honesty. Writen with such a direct style, the reader ends up sharing the life of the author and his lover in a very intimate way.
Besides, "Holding the Man", could easily replace any book studying the gay couple. Reality is here, in all it's beauty and cruelty!
A box of Kleenex can come handy while reading "Holding the Man". Those feeling down should avoid this book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jau Zeng on October 8, 2003
Format: Paperback
I read this book a few years back when I was in a private school in Melbourne, not really Xavier so I couldn't trace back in the school's yearbooks but it still really hit home hard because it happened so close to me (and many other people that I know). It's an amazing book about bravery, acceptance and most of all love. It is one of the truest books about what love can really be about - gay or straight.
It is a wonderful, sad, uplifting and inspiring story that anyone - gay, straight, male, female - should read.
Highly recommended if you can get your hands on a copy - or if you can't, keep writing to the publisher/Amazon to get them to start reprints! In today's modern society of a growing homosexual acceptance and tolerance, it is comforting to read something as touching as this while teaching us many new ways to think.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By B. Andersen on July 9, 2007
Format: Paperback
I read Holding the Man cover to cover twice on a Friday night about 3 years ago and was unable to speak with anyone that weekend without choking up. I am blinking back tears now. It is a book that changed my life.

At the time I was not out. I grew up in Melbourne and went to a school very similar to Xavier and could relate to the suburbs, the sport, the music, attitudes and feelings. Growing up I didn't have many gay role models - reading about John was one of the few times in my life where I have thought "I aspire to be like him". The book is particularly special to me since I found out later that a person mentioned towards the end is one of the first gay men I met, and also a friend's mother was one of their nurses at Fairfield.

I gave a copy to my ex after we broke up and it helped us to understand each other. I moved up to Sydney with work last year and I wish Ant had been with me to see it playing at the Stables in Kings Cross in December, but we had a laugh and cry about it when I called him in London afterwards.

I have given about 8 copies to my friends over the years, gay and straight, and each person's reaction has been similar. I hope that one day I can give a copy to my mum.
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