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What Becomes of the Brokenhearted: A Memoir
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What Becomes of the Brokenhearted: A Memoir

4.3  ·  Rating Details ·  1,038 Ratings  ·  51 Reviews
“In many ways writing saved my life. It’s my hope that sharing my experience will give hope to others who are learning to deal with their “difference.” I want them to know they don’t have to live their lives in a permanent “don’t ask, don’t tell” existence. Truth is a powerful tool.
“But my hope for this book doesn’t stop there. I think there is a message here for anyone wh
Paperback, 288 pages
Published July 13th 2004 by Anchor (first published April 10th 2003)
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Jan 27, 2008 De rated it it was amazing
I've loved E. Lynn's books from the beginning and have read them all. This book can break your heart. To think of someone so talented who thinks so little of himself. You just want to track him down and give him a hug. And now he's passed. Re-reading to find inspiration in the self love he found before his death.
Deedee Henson
Oct 12, 2016 Deedee Henson rated it it was amazing
Excellent Read
Miss Trini
Dec 19, 2007 Miss Trini added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: every mature & open-minded reader
I've been a fan of E.Lynn Harris from day 1 and the memoir just endeared him even more to me. The memoir allowed me to look in on the difficulties of his childhood and see how he struggled to come to terms with his identity and to remain true to himself. I've seen his writing style improve with every novel and this memoir was the icing on the cake.
Jan 10, 2010 RYCJ rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-keepers
Read this one in one sitting. IT IS A PAGE-TURNER. It wasn't always easy agreeing with his emotions and choices, but I couldn't disagree with the way he moved his story. I really loved the way E.Lynn told this one.
Dec 05, 2007 Tricia rated it it was amazing
A memoir of a depressed gay black man that grew up in Little Rock in the '60's. He lived life mostly in the closet hoping for a pill to make him happy, in love, and straight... How sad! But a great inspirational read that proves the human spirit can overcome the obstacles of life.
Feb 26, 2010 Ann rated it really liked it
After reading The Glass Castle, and being disappointed, I reread "What Becomes of the Brokenhearted" by E. Lynn Harris.

E. Lynn Harris has written a number of novels that deal with the theme of the bisexual/gay black man. His heroes are all handsome, wealthy African American men who have sexual relationships with men on the down low. He was ahead of the curve in exploring this issue. I picked up one of his novels on a trip to D.C. and then read them all. Harris was not exactly Shakespeare, but hi
Kathleen Hagen
What Becomes of the Brokenhearted: a Memoir, by E. Lynn Harris. Narrated by Richard Allen. Produced by books on tape and downloaded from

E. Lynn Harris is a New York Times best-selling author for his fiction written with protagonists who are usually gay males and African-American. This memoir details his own life. I haven’t read anything else by him so the memoir was somewhat lost on me. For some reason, partly due to the narrator, I think, this book made me impatient and felt too se
Dec 18, 2008 Leonora rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 14, 2013 Stephanie rated it it was amazing
Being a fan of E. Lynn Harris, I was very interested in getting to know him on a personal level. His novels have amused and intrigued me all of my high school career, which is when I was first introduced to him -- so there is history there. Who would've ever thought that this story-telling genius had such a tormented past?

In WHAT BECOMES OF THE BROKENHEARTED, Harris takes us back in time to Arkansas were he opens up about his abusive "step"-father, his fight with his sexuality & his desire t
Cindy s.
Jun 06, 2007 Cindy s. rated it liked it
Recommends it for: people who don't have hatred on other peoples sexual orientation
Lynn E.Harris ''What becomes of the brokenhearted'' is a gloomy and yet a non-forgiving book. It is about secrets and shockness that will leave the readers with mixed feelings. Lynn as a young African-American has always been mis-treated. He goes to an all white school with no friends or teachers that treats him in a proper way. At home his father abuses him because he think it will make him ''be a man''. As time goes on, Lynn's mother divorced his father and she had to start working 2-3 jobs t ...more
Mathis Bailey
Jun 01, 2013 Mathis Bailey rated it liked it
This was a fascinating read. The book talks about how E. Lynn Harris battled with self-depression, alcoholism, homosexuality and abuse. He goes into great deal of his failed relationships with men and women and the sudden deaths of his best friends. He also takes the reader through the darkest days of his life when he attempts suicide. Reading his memoir made me understand him much more as writer and as a person. Definitely a recommendable read.
May 20, 2010 Phoenix rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
E. Lynn opens the doors into his world in his memoir, What Becomes of the Brokenhearted. To me, this is more than just Harris telling us his story, he is also offering words of wisdom and encouragement along the way. I've read this book multiple times and each time I am moved by his story. The memoir will take you through a range of emotions but in the end you can't help but smile. If you are interested in knowing more about E. Lynn Harris, this is the book for you.
Apr 23, 2016 Craig rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Harris's youthful navigation of straight maleness and its institutions, coupled with the problematic intersection of race & homosexuality, highlights the experiences of many a gay man before him and many a gay man after him. The loneliness, the search for respect and love, that come along with that navigation are emotionally adept here. While it is not amazingly or challengingly written, it is still a worthwhile read.
Deni Aria
Dec 31, 2012 Deni Aria rated it it was amazing
I am very dazzled with Lynn's works and I had been wondering what life he was through so we could bring such a very great books to our lap. This book has beautifully been revealing himself and I was right the author, Lynn Harris has great personality and mean quality on very piece of his work! Thank you for showing us on how life to be lived in our own uniqueness !
Sep 11, 2012 Tye rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoirs, audiobooks
I went on a search to read about a black author, and then discovered I had stumbled upon the memoir of a black gay author.

The author talked a lot about his depression, and there seemed to be a lot of that in his life.

Actually, listening to his story gave me some insight into a life that is different from my own.

So, sure I would recommend it.
Shannan Hicks
Oct 02, 2012 Shannan Hicks rated it it was amazing
Far and away the best memoir I have ever read. I love his fiction and miss his voice greatly. But this was so well-written and no-holds-barred that I felt that I was in some of the situations with him. Mr. Harris is gone, but his legacy and what he has done for the literature of our time will endure.
Otescia Johnson
Oct 21, 2013 Otescia Johnson rated it it was amazing
What Becomes on the Brokenhearted changed my life. This memoir was written with such transparency and vulnerability that it not only touched me, but encouraged me to live in my truth and chase my dreams. I was living through my own personal pain when reading this book and Harris' tale of his own journey from pain to healing gave me inspiration for my voyage down the same path.
Jul 20, 2009 Tamara rated it it was ok
Shelves: aa-fiction
After reading this book, my view of the author really changed. Not in a good it if you want, but know that reading this memoir could very well shaking your "wow"...I have to admit, I had read every single book by E Lynn Harris, BUT after reading this book, unfortunely, I didn't purchase any of his new releases.
Dahnelle Johnson
Apr 17, 2007 Dahnelle Johnson added it
Recommends it for: EVERYBODY
Dorothy Basnight
Apr 19, 2013 Dorothy Basnight rated it it was amazing
OMG!! Reading about his life brought tears to my eyes, the abuse, makes you wonder why some people have kids. How they bring people into their children lives and don't see the harm, the effects, the changes that occur in their kids.
Judith Grace
Jun 16, 2011 Judith Grace rated it it was amazing
Rest in Peace, and thank you for the honest books. You educated me about men on another level. I was always attracted to gay men, for they were very respectful, and so good-looking. You are with your friends now.
Jan 04, 2008 Kelly rated it it was amazing
This book was amazing! Harris did a wonderful job of bringing to life the troubles and trials that he went through! I only wish that we had been given more information on how he felt and what life changes he went through after he sold his first book.
Lynn Kearney
Aug 26, 2009 Lynn Kearney rated it it was ok
2.5, if I want to be generous. I was so disappointeed in this book. I'd read such glowing things about him in his (recent) obituary, but this memoir is gushy and soggy with sentiment. It's hard to imagine a greater contrast with "The Liar's Club" also read this week.
Nov 07, 2007 Christie rated it really liked it
The memoir by one of my favorite modern writers. It is a sharp, heartbreaking and ultimately redeeming story of a boy who became a man who became a writer. I was shocked in some places but not in a bad way. A book I can read over and over.
E. Lynn Harris writes well, and his life story is very interesting. There are not many books that tell of growing up black, male, and gay. However, the book also talked about Harris' faith a lot, which I did not like so much.
Nanci Robertson
Nov 05, 2009 Nanci Robertson rated it really liked it
I enjoyed the honesty and self-reflective qualities of the author, E. Lynn Harris, who describes in detail the challenging and often painful situations which gave him the opportunity to grow and change into the person he is today.
Feb 10, 2008 Dimitre rated it it was amazing
A great book! E. Lynn is a very talented writer and can use words very well. There are parts of the book that are very difficult to read because of how difficult his life has been at times. Keep in mind I might be biased because I know him personally.
James Colwell
Jul 09, 2013 James Colwell rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book, I thought I knew a lot about Mr. Harris. I was so wrong, he was such a complex creature, I could not put the book down. It was just great!!!!!
Apr 16, 2007 Simone rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Any E. Lynn Fan's
This book is great for an inside look into the man behind the great stories. You can really see a part of him in all of his characters.
Feb 26, 2010 ACRL added it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: motw
Read by ACRL Member of the Week Carl R. Andrews. Learn more about Carl on the ACRL Insider blog.
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Why did E.lynn Harris wanted another degree in Journalism? 2 7 Jun 03, 2013 11:16AM  
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E. Lynn Harris was born in Flint, Michigan and raised, along with three sisters, in Little Rock, Arkansas. He attended the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville where he was the school's first black yearbook editor, the first black male Razorbacks cheerleader, and the president of his fraternity. He graduated with honors with a degree in journalism.

Harris sold computers for IBM, Hewlett-Packard,
More about E. Lynn Harris...

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“Work like you don’t need the money Dance like nobody is watching and Love like you’ve never been hurt —ANONYMOUS” 0 likes
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