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The Opera House

3.62  ·  Rating Details ·  143 Ratings  ·  38 Reviews
The Ultimate Loss

Raphael doesn’t believe in a higher power, or in anything, for that matter. After the death of his son, his life shattered, Raphael regrets that he didn’t lie about some perfect paradise, and he pushes away everything that once mattered to him—his lover, his job, his reputation as a top architect. Then he meets Brian, a homeless, maybe hopeless kid.

A Sec
Paperback, 268 pages
Published December 13th 2013 by Yaree AB (first published December 11th 2013)
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(showing 1-30)
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Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
I'm giving this book 2 stars even though I didn't like it, mostly because I'd feel like an asshole for giving less...

Look, I'm trying to spread my wings here and try new-to-me authors but it isn't working out very well. With this book, I want to say "bless its heart" because it tried really hard, but it just didn't work at all for me.

I'm a huge softy and I have kids, so you'd think a heart-breaking story about a father's grief after the death of a child would resonate with me, or at least elic
Mar 11, 2014 GayListBookReviews rated it it was amazing
A dramatic and moving story filled with heartbreak, romance and hope. My tears were falling before the end of the first chapter. As with all of this author’s work, I got an actual feel of the characters and their emotions and a sense of how it really is. Hans doesn’t sugarcoat his characters they are very realistic, a bit rough around the edges and slightly lacking.

Raphael's world shatters when he loses his only child, his thirteen year old son Jason, to Leukemia. While struggling to come to ter
Apr 03, 2014 Samantha rated it really liked it
3.5 stars (let's round it up!)

The author was kind enough to send a copy of his book to my side of the world after I won it in a Goodreads giveaway. Thanks again!

First of all, I must say I really like the cover art. The font... Not so much, but the art is great. I love it.

Overall, the story was quite engaging. As soon as the postman showed up with it at my door, I delved into this book and ended up finishing in a day. I liked it for its values of family and forgiveness. It also shows how devastat
Shelby P
Sep 09, 2015 Shelby P rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: m-m, freebie
(view spoiler) ...more
Hans Hirschi
Mar 02, 2014 Hans Hirschi rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: my-own-books

To write this novel, I had to dig deeper into my unconscious than I had hoped for. While I'm done with soul searching and my quest for spiritual relief, it was enjoyable to play with the concept per se, particularly as I DO struggle with the concept of losing a child. Who wouldn't, and only those among us who have experienced such a loss, truly know what it means.

As a writer we strive to illustrate, to the best of our abilities what such a loss might do to a human being, and that i
Sep 08, 2015 Laura rated it really liked it
Complete tear jerker.
Sep 13, 2015 Tjfox rated it did not like it
I really wasn’t a fan of this one, which is sad because the beginning of the book was incredibly heart wrenching.

Once I got past that part, it was a real struggle at times to follow along. The dialog just didn’t flow in a natural conversational rhythm and there were word choices and phrases used that seemed really off. I’d guess that English is not the author’s first language and, based on the author blurb in the back and the fact that this author’s homeland is Sweden, those issues are potential
Dec 18, 2013 Chutchy rated it it was amazing
Besides the fact that you'll be crying buckets...really good book. From beginning to end. Raphael lost his son, his long time lover and his job. Met a homeless teen, Brian and befriended him. Not saying anymore cuz don't want to give anything away. It's very emotional and raises issues of spirituality. It's one of those books that u just have to read!

Thanks Hans for once again making us dig down deep and use a lot of tissues along the way!
Oct 29, 2015 Rick rated it liked it
I liked this but didn't love it. The characters were engaging and the situations realistic yet to be honest the beginning of it was just dreary. I skipped 50 pages which was really unlike me and then the story grabbed me.

I do look forward to reading more of Hans books
Michael Joseph
Feb 15, 2014 Michael Joseph rated it really liked it
Shelves: gay-contemporary
You can find my full review of The Opera House on my web site.
Arch Bala
Aug 25, 2015 Arch Bala rated it really liked it
got this for free at Smashwords and what a delightful read!
Sep 08, 2015 Terry rated it really liked it
This probably should have been a longer novel as it moves along so fast I felt that some parts were glossed over. Having said that I have to admit there is so much angst and heartbreak in this book but it is counterbalanced with lots of caring, love and hope. It left me with one question though - who was/is the enigmatic Angela? Are we to presume that she was Raphael's guardian angel? Whoever she is in the novel she is the catalyst for so much of the action it would have been interesting to find ...more
Lynnette Hartwig
4.5 Stars

I was given this book by Inked Rainbow Reads in exchange for an honest review.

This story was in some turns heartbreaking and in others uplifting. First be prepared, have plenty of tissue handy because if you don’t cry then you have no empathy. The author was able to take this story and weave it into something amazing. I can’t imagine losing a child. The author was able to be bring across every emotion across the pages of this book. I would highly recommend this to everyone. Absolutely g
Em D.
Sep 21, 2015 Em D. rated it did not like it
Shelves: m-m
My biggest pet peeve is when the pov switches randomly from character to character with no clear indication. This detracts from the flow of the story and only serves to drive me nuts. This book constantly had that problem, so I ended up skimming a great deal because of it. I'm glad I got this book for free off Amazon, because I definitely would have wanted a refund otherwise.
Aug 03, 2014 Regina rated it really liked it
A dramatic piece of work full of emotions. Hans portraits the characters as realistically as possible with all the heartbreak, hope and love of a family. Hans brings to forefront social issues such as homelessness, child abuse, and homophobia without hesitation or sugar coating. A very deep moving story that leaves you crying and then warmth, relief, and contentment.
Mary Tillman
Nov 08, 2015 Mary Tillman rated it liked it
Shelves: same-sex
The story is too long. The author tells the same plot points in multiple chapters and there is head hopping throughout.

That said the story itself is interesting. I don't know how much research went into street living but it was interesting to read.
Sep 16, 2015 Yvonne rated it really liked it
3.5 stars. Liked the story but text needed better proofreading and the narration seemed somewhat detached emotionally. Freebie Kindle novel via BookBub.
Brandon Shire
Sep 12, 2015 Brandon Shire rated it really liked it
Shelves: glbt
3.75 Wrought with emotion on an issue I know very well. Found myself skimming at times, but definitely worth a read.
Dec 10, 2015 Joleen marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lgbt
FREE at ARe, Smashwords & Amazon US, 9-3-15
Jan 17, 2014 Louise rated it really liked it
Good reads first reads book I won
Olga Miret
Sep 04, 2015 Olga Miret rated it it was amazing
Creating the Family You Deserve.
This novel deals with some serious and important themes we all come across at some point in our lives, some more directly than others: grief, homelessness, family relationships, love, spiritual and religious beliefs, prejudice (sexual, social…), paedophilia, young runaways…But it is not an issue novel where the characters are just mouthpieces for different points of view or an attempt at indoctrinating the reader. It is a novel where the reader gets inside the sk
Debbie McGowan
Oct 27, 2015 Debbie McGowan rated it it was amazing
Wow, what a compelling, emotional saga this is! What follows is my cryptic attempt to explain that statement whilst not giving too much away.

Raphael is a successful and acclaimed architect who is working to design and secure the contract for a new opera house. It's a tremendously important project for his company; he is driven, ambitious, ready for the challenge...until his son dies and Raphael's world is obliterated.

This is the opening scene of Hans M. Hirschi's The Opera House and it is the eq
Dane Cobain
Oct 12, 2015 Dane Cobain rated it it was amazing
Disclaimer: While I aim to be unbiased, I received a copy of this for free to review.

The Opera House was an interesting one – I’ve already read and enjoyed two other Hirschi novels, and I never know what to expect because each of them seems to have a personality of their own. Here, we follow the story of a gay man who’s still in mourning after the death of his young son, as he attempts to rebuild his life. Much of this relies on his friendship with a sixteen-year-old street kid called Brian, who
Tracy Willoughby
Aug 16, 2016 Tracy Willoughby rated it it was amazing
The Opera House was an awesome read. Raphael has to deal with loss after loss after loss. Raphael is a man who doesn't believe in God, he sees things as just being what they are. everything to him is black and white, what you see is what it is. This book will have you thinking a little different. I personally believe Raphael had faith in something that's bigger then himself and was conflicted about what that meant. Raphael will show you that what you see isn't always the whole picture. Raphael ...more
Aug 10, 2016 Jendi rated it it was amazing
I'll admit this book won me over at the first chapter by referencing "The Brothers Lionheart" by Astrid Lindgren, a story that helped me cope with bereavement in my childhood. "The Opera House" is not a typical M/M romance. There's a love story, and a couple of sweet sexy scenes, but it's really about rebuilding your family and your worldview after a life-shattering event. Because it is a romance, you know it will work out in the end, otherwise the pain these characters go through would be hard ...more
Bryan D.
Sep 10, 2015 Bryan D. rated it really liked it
76 of 75 for 2015. It is unfortunate that I read this book immediately after reading the last book by one of my favorite authors. A compelling story in its own right, The Opera House recounts the life of renowned architect Raphael as he loses his 13 year old son to leukemia, then loses everything else to his grief. The redemption in the story comes in the form of 15 year old street kid Brian who has been kicked out of his home for being gay. Brian needs Raphael and Raphael needs Brian, and ...more
Gail Thompson
Sep 29, 2015 Gail Thompson rated it liked it
Shelves: romance, m-m
An unusual story that follows the life of an architect who loses his sons and sinks into a depression that leads to the loss of his partner, firm and house. Living on the streets he befriends a young man forced to hustle to feed himself. Through him Rafael finds a reason to clean up and keep going. He also finds Michael, Brian's social worker.

How the three of them help each other and the bonds that they share are truly touching. It also paints an insight into the perils of foster care. It made m
Dec 30, 2015 Ashley rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lgbt
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jor Barrie
Feb 07, 2016 Jor Barrie rated it it was ok
I'm a bit confused by this book; after 'Jonathan's Hope', I was expecting another immersive experience with lots of tears, but somehow it felt like watching a film that was just interesting enough to want to know the ending, but not really all that compelling in between.
I think the main problem for me was that I didn't feel anything for Raphael; I couldn't get a clear picture of him, and thought he was a bit too self-obsessed to be likeable.
KT Spille
Oct 15, 2015 KT Spille rated it really liked it
I met Hans yesterday and promised a review. Emotionally this book is a tough one. The mc's go through a lot of angst. However, you keep rooting for them to get that happily ever after. It is beautifully written and I'm soooo glad I read it. I'll definitely be looking into more by Hans. It was a pleasure to read and to meet the author.
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Born and raised in Switzerland, Hans graduated from High School in Arizona, worked for several years in the Swiss financial industry before pursuing his university studies in Zurich and Gothenburg.

His majors include literature, linguistics & social sciences.

Hans self-published his first book with poetry and a short story in 1991.

Nine years later, he followed up with a professional book on e-le
More about Hans M. Hirschi...

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