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How to Talk to a Widower

3.97  ·  Rating Details  ·  11,085 Ratings  ·  1,228 Reviews
"Beautifully crafted", "Fantastically funny." "Compulsively readable." Jonathan Tropper has earned wild acclaim—-and comparisons to Nick Hornby and Tom Perrotta—for his biting humor and insightful portrayals of families in crisis and men behaving badly. Now the acclaimed author of The Book of Joe and Everything Changes tackles love, lust, and lost in the suburbs—in a stunn ...more
Hardcover, 341 pages
Published July 17th 2007 by Delacorte Press (first published 2007)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Oct 14, 2008 Sassacaia rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Sassacaia by: Karen
I love Jonathan Tropper! I love how real his characters are, how easily you fall into his world and fall in love with his characters. It gives me hope that maybe mankind isn't all that bad. I'm so glad my coworker randomly bought his books then lent them to me (without even reading them first) because otherwise I might not even know about these books!

He makes me laugh out loud, and I love his dialogue:

“We don’t have twin telepathy.”
“Of course we do, it’s just subtle, like...flesh-colored nail po
Jan 23, 2010 M rated it it was ok
You know you're in Jonathan Tropper's world when:

- All the women are painfully, and unbelievably beautiful
- Every character talks like they're from a snappy 90's sitcom
- the protagonist is shy and sensitive, snarky and bumbeling, lost in the 80's, has a dysfunctional family, and a father who has died or suffered a stroke
- there is much graphic objectification of women, yet somehow the protagonist is still a sensitive soul who loves women so so much
- you feel as though you've read one, you've rea
Aug 24, 2008 Ruth rated it it was amazing
Wow! I feel very fortunate to have found a blurb about this book on the Borders newsletter. I read this on my Kindle and I was so impressed. Doug has lost his wife and friends and family members feel that it is more than time for him to get out their dating again. Doug doesn't quite feel that way yet but allows his twin to talk him it to it as we progress through the book. Jonathan Tropper, the author, so beautifully describes Doug's feeling of loss that you feel that he must have experienced th ...more
Jul 24, 2011 Ed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't know why it took me so long to get back to read another book by Jonathan Tropper. A couple of years back I read his latest book This Is Where I Leave You a couple years back and it was my favorite book of the year. There was something simply sizzling about Tropper's writing - razor sharp, witty, raw, funny, painful, astute... the exclamatory adjectives could just go on and on. I guess part of my fear was diluting that particular reading experience, but after a very informal online chat a ...more
Feb 24, 2013 Eric_W rated it it was amazing
Shelves: humor
This is the third Tropper novel I have read, the first being This is Where I Leave You. I liked both of them a lot. They are poignant, sweet, funny, vicious, and insightful. His family dinner scenes are classic. They have you laughing out loud only to get sucker punched by the perceptiveness. He does this through the classic comedian's technique of hyperbole, but it's not exaggerated so much that it becomes caricature. We've all seen elements of his dysfunctional family in ourselves and others.

Jul 09, 2008 Michael rated it liked it
Doug Parker is a 29-year old widower. He lost his wife Hayley (who was older) in a plane crash and has spent the last year avoiding life in Jonathan Tropper's "How to Talk to a Widower."

And while much of Doug's world is defined by his depression and anger over losing Hayley, it's not the only thing going on his life. His twin sister Clair is pregnant and leaving her husband, his father suffered a stroke and has good and bad days and his younger sister met her fiancee at the shiva for Hayley. And
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Jul 24, 2013 Kelly (and the Book Boar) rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2013
4.5 Stars

29 year old Doug Parker was barely getting his life together when his wife Hailey passed away. Now she’s gone – and so is he. It’s been over a year and he is barely functioning. He rarely leaves the house and avoids any interaction with his family (including his stepson who was also left behind when Hailey died). The only thing he’s managed to do is morph his monthly magazine column from a “how to …” regarding celebrities to a “how to talk to a widower”. Doug’s twin sister, Clair, decid
Aug 19, 2016 Darlene rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, grief
Every now and then I feel the urge to 'binge' read. I choose an author and I try to read everything that author has written. Over the last few months I have been binging and one of the authors I chose was Jonathan Tropper. I started with his novel, 'How to Talk to a Widower' and it turned out to be a great place to start. The story begins with several short lines that immediately caught my attention and lingered in my mind….
"I had a wife. Her name is Hailey. Now she's gone and so am I."

These li
Dec 26, 2014 Carol rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 Stars. Not my favorite JT novel, but still good and filled with his usual sarcasm and wit. He truly does have the knack for writing about a difficult subject and turning it into something quirky and humorous. Enjoyed it!
There have been many great “storytellers” throughout history. Unfortunately, there have been very few authors blessed with BOTH the talent to “tell a story,” as well as the ability to truly “capture the human condition.” Jonathan Tropper is one such author. He is the rare author whose novels, despite their brilliance & intellectual undertones, are still relatable to the recreational reader. A single sentence by Jonathan Tropper can cause a reader to roar in laughter, while crying sad heart ...more
I think we are all familiar with the stereotype of the so called "modern" writer: the kind of guy or girl who sits at Starbucks, smokes a Silk Cut (or a Djarum or other aromaticized poison if he or she is hip enough) and types away on a MacBook. The type of text that comes out is is either dick/chick lit, meaning witty novels about the complicated relationship between men and women, or some quasi post-modern bullshit which nobody understands and everybody praises for exactly that reason. Sometim ...more
Abigail Hillinger
May 09, 2007 Abigail Hillinger rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
I was so excited to receive a pre-released copy of this book (it's slated to hit stores on 7/17). Jonathan Tropper's name keeps popping up whenever I type in a search for Nick Hornby/Tom Perrotta, and his books have received good reviews. This one was supposed to be amazing. I read it in a few nights and while I couldn't put it down, I felt robbed toward the end of the book. I turned the last page and thought, "That's it?"

The part that kills me is Tropper is a great author-- poignant, funny, and
Jan 08, 2014 Nikki rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
After reading all of Tropper's books, its interesting to notice his progression and certain kinds of scenes that are unique to him. Tropper loves setting up utterly ridiculous scenes, usually involving family, that are totally hilarious, I believe there was one in book of joe involving a family dinner and a parrot. I really like his writing style. This book is a bit of an emotional rollercoaster, going from truly sad to laughing out loud a few pages later. All in all I think this is a great read ...more
Jul 04, 2008 Melissa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Great story. There are a few parts of the book that can bring tears to your eyes, but Doug is a young widower... Most of the book is quick witted and funny.
Doug is in his 20's and marries a women about 11 years older than he is (her name is Hailey, spelled the same as my daughter) with a teenage son. She dies about 2 years into their marriage. The story is mainly the year after his wife's death. Doug's relationship with his teenage step-son, pregnant twin sister whose life is coming undone, anot
Plínio Mendes
May 28, 2016 Plínio Mendes rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Sabe quando você se identifica com o narrador, gosta dos personagens e das relações entre eles, se interessa pelo drama proposto e consome uma história em poucos dias? Então...
Em Como Falar Com Um Viúvo, Tropper mostra o motivo de ser considerado por muitos o rei do lad-lit. Com um pano de fundo dramático, ele cria situações hilárias e desperta emoções conflitantes no leitor.
Juro que eu ia do céu ao inferno durante a leitura!
Um romance emocionante, com u
Laala Alghata
“There are no happy endings, just happy days, happy moments. The only real ending is death, and trust me, no one dies happy. And the price of not dying is that things change all the time, and the only thing you can count on is that there’s not a thing you can do about it.” — Jonathan Tropper, How To Talk To a Widower

During the summer, I read This Is Where I Leave You. I really enjoyed it. It was a great comic novel, good dialect, good progression, a lot of heart. I even talked about how Tropper
Dec 05, 2015 Miz rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tearjerker
Well this was nice. I admit to shedding a tear at the end, but I suspect that was just as much sleep deprivation together with life of the characters. I enjoyed it and it would be a goo beach read if someone needs one :)
Tatyana Naumova
Nov 23, 2015 Tatyana Naumova rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015
Троппер очень хороший, но у него можно прочесть одну книгу и больше не читать, т.к. герои все одинаковые.
Dec 14, 2011 Jennie rated it liked it
Shelves: popular-fiction
Very low impact, but Jonathan Tropper's book are perfect light reading. I was reading this in a cafe the other morning and my server was a young Russian woman. She asked what I was reading and when I showed her the cover she said, "Oh yes, he has good books. They are like girl books, but not too girl." I said, "Yes! It's chick lit for smart people." That pretty much sums it up.
Aug 15, 2007 Allison rated it it was amazing
I bought this book Monday morning and was done by it on Tuesday afternoon. One of those perfect miracles in which I enjoyed every last thing about it: the characters, the writing, the pace. It would make me laugh and then out of nowhere, it would have me tearing up. Just a perfect combination of everything that makes me want to read.
Nov 23, 2008 Megan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone
Recommended to Megan by: The Heathrow readers' guide
Among my favorite parts of visiting England is the chance to walk into British bookstores and browse through an entirely NEW range of English-speaking authors. Last time I was in England, I picked up three new books to read during my trip. This one, Jonathan Tropper's "How to Talk to a Widower" was my final purchase, selected at Heathrow to keep me company for the flight home.

It didn't take me long to discover the irony of my choice -- Tropper's an American author painting a picture of family li
Ronya Misleh
Jul 24, 2011 Ronya Misleh rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the third Tropper book I've read in just as many weeks. I can't get enough. This book, like the other two I have read (This Is Where I Leave You and The Book of Joe) is swift, wry, funny, and flow with an ease that keeps you just wanting more. Tropper's characters evolve organically--before you know it, you're attached to each of them and standing on the sidelines cheering them on. This particular book was funnier, I thought, than the others I have read. Just when you thought Doug, the m ...more
Feb 15, 2016 ALPHAreader rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I love, love, loved this book!
It’s hard to put the book into a specific genre. On the one hand it’s a romantic-comedy, but with a very bleak beginning. Before Doug’s restorative journey the book deals with his dark depression following the death of his wife, Hailey. It is a sad beginning; but infused with Tropper’s laugh-out-loud humor that takes a speculative look at grief and the funny side of mourning.

Doug has to fight-off the advancements of suburban housewives in the wake of Hailey’s death
Tammie McElligott
Nov 23, 2007 Tammie McElligott rated it really liked it
This was the first book of Jonathan Tropper's that I have read and I have to say I really love his voice in How To Talk To A Widower.

A fan of Nick Hornby's work I was curious to pick up another male authors book that fits the "women's fiction" category. The story is about a young widower who has to deal with a step-son and family that is more than a little odd.

Jonathan Tropper writes in a such a lively manner and in scenes that were so vivid I could easily see this on the big screen.

Doug Parker
Mandi Loves to read
How to Talk to a Widower is about a 29 year old guy who loses his slightly older wife in a plane crash.

I Love this author!!! I have read 2 books from him. This book and This is where I leave you and both books were fantastic. Jonathan Trooper takes serious subjects and knows how make a great read from it. He is so funny in his writing he makes me laugh out loud. Definitely a 5 star book!!!
Apr 07, 2014 Grumpus rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, audiobook
Wow, I like a book about relationships. Not my typical listen but I've enjoyed other Tropper books and I have to say I never thought I'd like this as much as I did. The title of the book put me off for a while and that was a shame. This is my fourth book by the author and all have achieved 4 stars. Funny? Yes, but his writing style is makes it great.

Chris Ring
Mar 12, 2014 Chris Ring rated it really liked it
Decent, but kinda samey to Book of Joe. Also the action bit in the last 20 pages felt a bit out of place
Eva Laginha
Eu tinha uma mulher, chamava-se Hailey. E morreu. E eu também.”

Este é o ponto de partida para a história, criada à volta de um jovem viúvo de 29 anos, que, de um dia para o outro, vê a sua vida sofrer uma reviravolta súbita e um abanão inesperado.
Ele acreditara ter encontrado nesse amor o rumo da sua vida, depois de uma existência juvenil risonha e descomprometida.
Apanhado desprevenido e sentindo muitas dificuldades em lidar com a nova situação, Doug vai afundar-se na sua própria dor e no sofr
Lisa Moser
Apr 25, 2015 Lisa Moser rated it it was amazing
If I could give this 6 stars I would. Such a great book, such real emotion and I just love his writing.
Ken Heard
Dec 23, 2014 Ken Heard rated it it was amazing
I've read this book three times now over the past few years and each time I am blown away by the excellent writing, the deep observations, the humor, pacing, timing, skill. I generally don't read novels more than once, but I find with Jonathan Tropper's stuff, I can read them over and over and still enjoy them as much as I did on the first read.

In this novel, Doug Parker is dealing with the death of his wife that all widowers seem to do - destructive behavior, loss, confusion. Throw in the dysfu
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2015 Reading Chal...: How to Talk to a Widower by Jonathon Tropper 1 11 Jan 19, 2015 03:29AM  
review 1 18 Sep 15, 2013 04:02PM  
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Jonathan Tropper is the author of Everything Changes, The Book of Joe , which was a Booksense selection, and Plan B. He lives with his wife, Elizabeth, and their children in Westchester, New York, where he teaches writing at Manhattanville College. How To Talk To A Widower was optioned by Paramount Pictures, and Everything Changes and The Book of Joe are also in development as feature films.

More about Jonathan Tropper...

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“Sometimes you walk past a pretty girl on the street there's something beyond beauty in her face, something warm and smart and inviting, and in the three seconds you have to look at her, you actually fall in love, and in those moments, you can actually know the taste of her kiss, the feel of her skin against yours, the sound of her laugh, how she'll look at you and make you whole. And then she's gone, and in the five seconds afterwards, you mourn her loss with more sadness than you'll ever admit to. ” 69 likes
“She was smart and funny and vulnerable and just so goddamned beautiful, the kind of beautiful that was worth being shot down over.” 37 likes
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