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The Weight of It All #1

The Weight of It All

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After being dumped by his long-term boyfriend for being overweight, Henry Beckett decides to make some drastic changes. In a vain attempt at getting his boyfriend back, Henry does the most absurdly frightening thing he can think of.

He joins a gym.

Reed Henske is a personal trainer who isn’t sure he’ll ever be ready to date again. He’s sick of guys who are only interested in the perfect body image, never seeing him for who he really is.

As Reed tortures Henry with things like diet and exercise, Henry enamours Reed with recipes and laughter. As the friendship lines start to blur, Henry is convinced there’s no way Thor-like Reed could ever be interested in a guy like him.

Reed just has to convince Henry that life isn’t about reaching your ideal bodyweight. It’s about finding your perfect counterweight.

254 pages, Kindle Edition

First published September 12, 2016

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About the author

N.R. Walker

94 books4,237 followers
Author also writes as A. Voyeur

N.R. Walker is an Australian author, who loves her genre of gay romance. She loves writing and spends far too much time doing it, but wouldn't have it any other way.

She is many things; a mother, a wife, a sister, a writer. She has pretty, pretty boys who she gives them life with words.

She likes it when they do dirty, dirty things...but likes it even more when they fall in love. She used to think having people in her head talking to her was weird, until one day she happened across other writers who told her it was normal.

She’s been writing ever since...


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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,305 reviews
September 14, 2016
I am a fan of stories about imperfect MCs, and my heart went out to Henry, whose boyfriend of eight years left him, claiming Henry was old (at heart) and fat (250 pounds at 5’10”, which qualifies as obese).

Henry decides to lose weight to get his boyfriend (the One Who Shall Not Be Named) back. He is really whiny and negative when he first begins his workout regime. He complains about EVERYTHING and constantly makes self-deprecating jokes. He puts himself down before others can.

Honestly, bitching & moaning annoys me in real life, and it annoyed me here. I am very much a suck-it-up-and-shut-up kind of person. I have always been a fitness fanatic, so it was hard for me to relate to Henry. But I was proud of him for not giving up, and he grew on me as the story progressed.

Thank goodness for Reed, Henry’s personal trainer, who takes a very, well, personal interest in Henry. Reed is gentle, encouraging, and looks like Thor. But Henry isn’t ready to date, nope, not at all. He barely pays attention to any of Reed’s *ahem* many assets.

Henry initially doesn’t feel good enough for Reed. I mean, how could someone who looks like THAT want someone who looks like Henry? But Reed has a story of his own and wants a relationship based on trust and respect, not looks and protein powders.

I thought Reed was almost too good to be true, but I can’t fault Henry for falling and falling hard. Henry and Reed actually have a lot in common. They both like cooking (Henry finds a passion for creating healthier but delicious recipes) and quiet nights at home. They talk about anything and everything. They just fit.

I enjoyed the secondary characters, especially Henry’s BFF Anika and her boyfriend Sean. I found myself cracking up at Henry and Anika’s crazy conversations.

This slow-burn, low-angst story is as much about Henry getting healthy, rediscovering friendships, and gaining new self-confidence as it is about Henry and Reed’s budding relationship.

There was not a lot of steam here, but the HEA was just about the BEST EVER. That epilogue had me cheering.

*cue Chariots of Fire music*

~~ BR with my girls: Renée & Catherine ~~

Profile Image for Gigi.
2,156 reviews1,055 followers
August 18, 2017
It's Friday night and I'm super crabby that I had to miss GRL2016. AND I have to work all weekend too. FML.

BUT, I just finished N.R. Walker's newest piece of perfection and lets just keep this review nice and simple, umkay?

Profile Image for ~Mindy Lynn~.
1,396 reviews580 followers
April 1, 2017
Once again I found a book that held my attention from beginning to end. I absolutely loved this story and adored the MC and his Thor, Reed.
I like it more and more that authors are putting out books with imperfect characters. Not only is easier for us readers to relate to them, it’s more realistic.
Henry has recently been dumped by his asshole of a boyfriend who claimed Henry as being old and overweight. Of course Henry is heartbroken and took the overweight jab to heart. So in a decision to win his douche bag of a boyfriend back he decides to join a gym and lose the weight.
This is where he meets his Thor, Reed.
Reed… What a special guy. Reed is trainer at the gym and takes Henry under his exercising wing. I really loved him. He was so encouraging and positive. He really helped Henry believe in himself and gave him the confidence to better himself for himself and not for anyone else.
The slow burn of this relationship was delicious. I thought the relationship progressed as it should have. Slow and steady. Henry was just dumped and Reed’s ex left him finding it hard to trust another. So it was a natural pace for these guys. But soon what started out as friendship and a budding likeness for cooking turned into a loving romance where these two men’s puzzle pieces fitted perfectly together.
Henry may have wanted to get his boyfriend back at the beginning, but what it eventually turned out to be for Henry was a journey of self-discovery, the regaining of his confidence, making new friends, falling in love, and making some awesome food.
There is no way to come away from this story not feeling happy. It’s funny, inspiring, and just enjoyable. I recommend it to all my MM loving dolls. Happy reading! xx
Profile Image for Llakshmi.
332 reviews187 followers
August 20, 2021
“Well, sports-related injuries would imply partaking in some kind of physical activity. The only marathons I’ve done are Game of Thrones and Breaking Bad marathons.”

This book gave me the warmest hug I could ever ask for.

NR Walker has quickly become one of my favorite authors and a go-to author for me. I’ve been reading alot of her backlist and I’ve been dying to try this book for the longest time.

Story: After being dumped over being overweight, Henry decides to lose some weight as a fuck you to his ex and hires a personal trainer, Reed

Now let me tell you. I loved both of the characters so much. They were both so similar and yet so different. Henry was my absolute favourite. He made me laugh out loud way too many times that I ran to my brother to read out the quips and jokes. He was such a sweetheart and his interactions with Reed warmed my heart. He was just such a genuine character and his feelings towards his body was honestly very relatable to me because I too was plus sized and struggled with my body image. So it was so close to my heart when I read about his journey and it was beautiful how the author managed to add humour into it without making light of the situation.

He rolled his eyes. “Sorry.”
“Don’t apologise. It’s not your fault the twinky Chihuahua tried to hump your leg.”
Reed finally started to smile. “Chihuahua?”
I nodded. “His full pedigree kennel name is Shameless Bottom Needs a Muscle Daddy, but he gets called Chihuahua Boy for short.

And Reed. Oh Reed! You see , usually this is where I rant and complain about how authors write perfect characters making them seem unrealistic. But Jesus, Reed was perfectly imperfect. He was vulnerable too and had insecurities that he was very open about especially when it came to not being good enough for Henry. He was also very open about his feelings for Henry and how he was hurt when Henry made assumptions about him based on his physical appearance. But he was also very supportive and stayed by Henry’s side through his journey.

You know what’s worse than being alone?”
She squeezed my hands. “What’s that?”
“Being with someone and being alone at the same time.”

The story itself was beautiful. It was told from only Henry’s POV and how he managed to climb up from the lowest point of his life and turn his entire life around and finally let himself look in the mirror without grimacing. There is obviously a lot of Henry beating himself up over his body and how he doesn’t belong with Reed because of his lifestyle and appearance but it’s quickly shut down by Reed who didn’t beat around the bush and told him point blank that he’s what Reed wants. Talk about swoonnn.

Also a huge appreciation for the secondary characters in this, Emily ( Reed‘s bestie) , Anika and Sean (Henry’s best friends) were amazing characters. Their personalities were so humorous and fun and uplifting. I loved their interactions with the main characters

Overall I would say that this was definitely a favorite read this year. I highly recommend it and god help me, I cant wait to read more by this author.
Profile Image for Dia.
534 reviews133 followers
October 6, 2016
5 stars full of laughter
This sweet story went directly to my heart and warmed my soul!
It's my first book by this author and what a discovery this was!!


Henry was such a hilarious character: his whining, his "no filter" conversations made me laugh so hard! It was exactly what I needed right now.

Reed: he was beautiful and smart and funny, had a huge heart and was so sweet - too good to be true! Well he was beautiful on the outside, but on the inside too and that is the most wonderful thing in this book. This story makes you believe in fairy tales once again and I was completely won by this sweet couple! The HOT scenes were pretty amazing too *just saying*

It was very easy for me to relate to Henry, because I am not a sports person so all that "I am going to die" seems like something I would repeat over and over again too. At least at first.

Well I absolutely adored the way this amazing author described Henry's thoughts, all the phases he went through while working out and also the way he healed over his ex. He learned to trust himself, to eat healthier and to love again!

What a sweet, sweet story, with slow burning, low angst and a perfect HEA!
Profile Image for BWT.
2,144 reviews216 followers
August 30, 2021
Light-hearted story about a man getting his groove back after the end of an eight year relationship.

Joel Leslie shines in his performance. The character voices are great, his timing with the humor is spot on, and the pacing was perfect. 5 Stars for the narration!!

Henry's humorous outlook and how easily and completely he and Reed fit together make this a very sweet romance.

Low angst, humorous romance with a sigh-inducing HEA.


I do love a good overweight MC gets the gorgeous love interest because their weight doesn't really matter at all and it's all about what's in the inside story...

But I wish Henry would have had a little less attention paid both verbally and internally to how gorgeous and ripped and physically fit Reed is even after Reed explained how little that meant and his backstory.

Also, sort of off topic, but would it be so much to ask to get a story with an overweight character who doesn't have self esteem issues? But who's all, "Bitch, look at me - I'm chunky and fine! You know you want to break off a piece of this!"
Profile Image for Jilly.
1,838 reviews6,209 followers
April 5, 2021
Henry is the MC who was just left by his live-in boyfriend of 8 years because he was "fat and old". Ouch!

So, Henry decides to join a gym and get a personal trainer. Henry, why? Just embrace the old and chubby. Running and working out is for the young. They can have it. Go pay someone to make you sweat your ass off? Um, no thanks. I'll just keep my money and only sweat when I have to take a drug-test or something.

See? I can do public service announcements or whatever.

To make all of our dreams come true, the personal trainer looks like Thor and has a thing for slightly older, chubby people who are funny.
*raises hand wildly, "That's me!*
And thus all of my dirty little daydreams come true.

yeah it is!
Profile Image for Meep.
2,029 reviews197 followers
September 16, 2017
I LOVED THIS BOOK, seriously, I want to grab sparkly pens, write it's name with floating hearts, then write it some horrendous emo poety and plan for future little booklets. Thankfully I'll settle for writing a review-type-thingy here. With gifs.

This book came at the right time for me, that likely has a big effect on my opinion. I'm on the diet and learning to like daily walk/jog/pant/huff/crawls so I fully connected to Henry. Not sure if it would have had as much impact without that. To me Henry was very real, relatable and adorable - I mean how could anyone not love him? He's so funny, his voice through-out had me grinning. This could make an incredibly good audio-book.

Despite the book starting with a break-up there's no real angst, it's the story of Henry getting fitter, more accurately of him learning to like himself, and I loved that there was no hokey showdown, and the why of that.

Reed the love interest. Tall, georgeous, fit, hung, and LOVELY. Dream guy material. But the very best thing about this book is that the focus is Henry, as great as Reed is it's Henry that come across as adorable and worth winning. Size be-damned. All the way through it's personality that shines, for all the exercising the book isn't about size, it's about size not mattering. And yes, I get that judging goes both ways, and that maybe a giant portion of perceived mockery is in our own heads. But I so get the 'don't look at me' and 'I don't fit here' feelings.

And as if there wasn't enough smiles and good feels, and tasty sounding foods already, they then take things slow, they work up to sexy-times, Uno, Scrabble, then Horizontal Mambo. That sigh is me melting into a happy puddle of goo.

Then there's an Epilogue.
Profile Image for Martin.
738 reviews392 followers
October 23, 2016
What a feel-good story!


I absolutely loved following Henry's path from being an unhappy recently single gay man with a weight problem to becoming a confident man who is happy with his place in life and whose kind character and humor even has his hot personal trainer from the gym he's frequenting after his break-up fall for him.


Hot gym rat Reed is almost too good to be true. I didn't find a single flaw about him, which might literally be the only weakness in this story. Everything else was pure heaven and a great reminder that *we* are in charge of our lives and can make a change if we only want it enough.
Sure, we don't have a hot personal trainer like Reed, who gets REALLY personal with us, but still...
Amazing characters, amazing story.

And even though she only got a very small role in the story, I absolutely loved Henry's mom who keeps frequenting Nespresso shops in hopes that George Clooney himself would show up - because, well, that's what the ads imply, right? Adorable ;-)

5 feel-good stars!
Profile Image for Renée.
1,023 reviews312 followers
October 19, 2020
4.5 stars!

I really adored this book. I'm always a Walker fan, but there's something to be said when any author writes an MC whom you, personally, can relate to. And I related to Henry all over the place.

Henry's partner of 8 years ups and leaves him with a nice parting shot about how he's gotten fat. Douchebag. Henry takes a good look at himself in the mirror (and later the scale) and realized that he does want to lose some weight and be healthier. Enter Reed - the ripped, smokin' hot, Personal Trainer at Henry's local gym.

Henry and Reed hit it off immediately. Not in the form of romance, but just two people who enjoy talking. Friendly and platonic. Later, as they transition into friends who hang out outside of the gym, Henry realizes he may have a bit of a crush on Reed.

The best part of the story was how realistic Henry's insecurities were over the differences in looks there were between he and Reed. Who wouldn't? I've personally always been a tad on the overweight side of the scale, so I can appreciate where Henry was coming from when he wondered why Reed, Mr. Six-Pack Abs and Cantaloupe-Biceps, would even look his way.

Reed was perfect. Almost too perfect. He had his own past and perspective and doesn't like when people make judgments over his looks anymore than Henry does. I swooned over this man!

Henry's journey to a healthier him was so inspiring. It showed that it's not easy - which it's not. There are many people out there who have never battled weight a day in their life and simply love to exercise. And I've personally heard some of them say "It's easy. Just stop eating bad foods and go to the gym. If you want it bad enough, you'll do it." The first part of that statement is incredibly false. It may be simple, but it's not easy. Just like math is easy for some and not others, weight loss is the same. We should never ridicule those for which things don't come as easy as others. The second part of that statement is true, though. If you want it bad enough, you'll do it. And Henry wanted it bad enough.

This one was lower on the steam, but very appropriate. This was a slow burn, friends to lovers story. Jumping in the sack early on wouldn't have made sense for this couple. The steam that was there made up for it IMO, and the epilogue was so awesome!

Between the relatability, Henry's humor, and Reed's perfection, I highly recommend!
Profile Image for Fabi.
1,009 reviews145 followers
March 21, 2017
It never fails to amaze me the absolute gems I find sitting in my tbr list. Books that for some crazy ass reason I haven't made time for.

The M/M Romance group March Mini Monthly Gang Bang challenge brought this gem to the top of my tbr. Thank you Saturnine for picking this wonderful book for me to read this month.

I have choked, coughed, snorted and cried in an effort to not laugh out loud while reading this book. It was all in vain, the laughter peeled out of my lungs and belly like there was no resistance.

Henry Beckett has no filter between his brain and mouth. Words just sort of tumble out. Sometimes he doesn't even realize he has spoken out loud.

I loved him. I loved his humor. I loved his perseverance. I loved his kind and gentle heart.

I also loved his personal trainer, Reed Henske. When I wasn't laughing at Henry (admittedly not often), I was drooling over the Chris Hemsworth look alike, Reed. But, unlike Chris, I got to know Reed on a more personal level. He is even more beautiful on the inside than he is on the outside. (Hard to imagine isn't it?)

N.R. Walker did imagine it. Then she shared it with us. Over the past year or so I have read so many of her beautiful stories. She has become one of my favorite authors and an auto-buy for anything she publishes.
Profile Image for Denise H..
2,893 reviews201 followers
October 16, 2016
*** Witty, relevant and entertaining ! *** This is an amazing story ! It is so worthwhile and eye-opening.
I loved it ! In Australia, Henry, 30ish, a successful Financial Actuary

is depressed and dejected because he's been dumped by his partner of 8 years. In his despair, he realizes he must find the courage to pull himself up and move on.
Reed, a fitness trainer, is his salvation,
(Cris Hemsworth look-alike)

because he truly understands Henry; he's patient, and helps him.
Henry's journey to healthy living is full of fun, soul searching,
openness, and the willingness and dedication to succeed.
I can relate, because I've been in need of motivation to lose weight and get off the couch.
We get to watch Henry progress,

and see Reed leading him to a new lease on life.
This is also a totally erotic and sexy tale

when the men get together. They begin slowly and give each other space and acceptance, plus help each other through the associated insecurities.

This is beautifully written, completely interesting, with dynamic and deeply fabulous characters ! I loved the MCs and of course the best friends and co-workers like Anika and her boyfriend Sean, Melinda, and others. Awesome cast !
Please DO READ this book !
* It is important, funny, relevant, eye-opening and heartwarming.
Wow !
I highly recommend this to everyone. ENJOY !
Profile Image for Meags.
2,066 reviews353 followers
October 13, 2016
4 Stars

I truly enjoyed this story. Although, I must admit, I was a bit apprehensive going in. I've always struggled with my own weight issues and I don't particularly find it a fun topic to read about in my books, but I appreciated the way Walker handled this particular story. For me, this was primarily about self-acceptance and the importance of being your own personal best - screw what anyone else thinks! These are two mentalities I can definitely get on board with.

I adored Henry to pieces. His personality was full of rambling goodness and all things sweet and kind hearted. The things that came out of his mouth had me laughing out loud; everything he said fell under the umbrella of 'it's funny 'cause it's true.' To say I could relate to this dude and his personal hang ups, is the understatement of the year. I simply adored him and the little journey he went on, and I'm so happy that he got a happy ending that was both satisfying and realistic.

Reed was a dream come true. My cynical self wants to question whether guys like this actually exist, but I'm just going to switch on my rainbows and unicorns mentality and believe that it's a possibility that a Henry could always find a Reed, and we'll leave it at that.
Profile Image for BevS.
2,689 reviews2 followers
February 28, 2019
4.5 stars for this read, which put a huge smile on my face throughout. Didn't much care for Henry's whinging when he started the gym, but who doesn't whine when they first start exercising after years of being a couch potato?? I loved Henry's filter-less mouth [which wasn't malicious...mostly 😉], and the ability he had to make his personal trainer Reed smile even when Reed and especially Henry didn't really feel like it. Loved all the secondary characters too, especially Henry's bestie Anika and her other half Sean, his PA Melinda and Reed's colleague at the gym Emily, and that epilogue?? Perfect.

Just goes to show that the sayings beauty is only skin deep and don't judge a book by its cover are still relevant in this day and age. Thanks Nic!!
Profile Image for *J* Too Many Books Too Little Time.
1,921 reviews3,431 followers
September 19, 2016
3.75 Stars!

This is probably one of my more likable NR Walker reads. Travis and Charlie still remain my favorite couple, but this was a good read.

I liked the humor. A lot.

But Henry was almost too much. Almost. His lack of self-esteem and constant negative thoughts and comments hovered right there on the edge of being annoying. But I get it. I get why he was like that.

Reed was a great character. Almost too great. He was pretty perfect. I would have liked his POV at times.

I loved Henry and Reed's interactions together though. And I loved seeing Henry gain more confidence.

And then of course there was the lack of steam. While the build up and chemistry was good I would have liked more of Henry and Reed together as a couple.

Still, highly recommend this one.
Profile Image for Sophia Triad.
2,239 reviews3,425 followers
December 7, 2016
So the solution in order to get fit is to find a nice, gorgeous personal trainer
... who likes texting me and calling me to ask me how I feel any time of the day and night, because he is worried about me
….while I whine and KEEP TALKING AND TALKING about the cruelty of life.

Eh… sorry it will never happen, mainly because my husband is a bit aggressive.

So I guess I am doomed. There is no way I will go back to the gym and use all the torture devices without somebody falling in love with me for trying so hard and for being constantly in pain.

Anyhow, the story of Henry and Reed is cute.
Profile Image for Imme  van Gorp.
449 reviews131 followers
May 4, 2022
|| 4.5 stars ||

Well, how positively lovely this was! It was absolutely wonderful.

This book had pretty much everything it needed to be great: there was a lot of humour, plenty of depth, delightful characters, a slow-burn romance with a lot of sweetness and chemistry, and a character arc of someone finding their true self and happiness again.

This story is about Henry, an extremely funny and witty, yet insecure, 35-year old guy.
The book begins immediately after he has just been dumped by his boyfriend of 8 years who tells him it is because he is "old and overweight".
Of course Henry is absolutely devastated by this, and, for the first time in years, has to face the reality that he has really let himself go. He decides he is going to have to make some changes, for a big part so he can get his ex-boyfriend back, starting with going to the gym to lose weight.
Once there, he meets the insanely fit and sexy Reed, his new personal trainer, and they hit it off instantly. Reed helps him, albeit with constant struggle and complaints coming from Henry, to persevere in doing his exercises, but also to find joy in other things.
They develop a deep trust and friendship, finding themselves constantly laughing easily together, but Henry cannot even imagine that someone like Reed would ever be interested in something more than friendship with someone who looks like him.
Nonetheless, Henry slowly but surely finds himself happier than he has been in years, and although he always remains himself, he becomes the best version of who he can possibly be.

I can honestly say that I loved this book. I really liked the idea of the story, and also how it was executed.
It worked even better because the characters were so likable and you were truly rooting for them.

Henry was amazing. He was so witty, sarcastic, self-deprecating, and just all-around funny as hell. He cracked me up so many times, and I loved seeing how much Reed appreciated his humour.
Henry's insecurities were also very real, and his struggles were poignant enough without it feeling oppressive: this is a light-hearted story, but that doesn't mean it cannot have serious themes. This combination of humour and self-doubt was done really well.

Reed was such a sweetheart: caring, kind, motivating and thoughtful. I honestly couldn't imagine a more perfect guy for Henry (or for anyone, for that matter).
Reed helps inspire Henry, but most of all they just fit together so incredibly well. They truly understand one another and love spending time together.

The secondary characters were all also very entertaining and added to the overall story. I really liked Henry's friends and the dynamic he had with them. I loved how he wasn't some sad guy who didn't have anyone before he met Reed: he actually already had really good friends, he just found something even better with Reed. And that's lovely.

This was really a very nice story, and I'm super glad I read it. I enjoyed reading every single page!
Please read this if you’re in the mood for a soft, feel-good, cute and funny book!
Profile Image for Ariana  (mostly offline).
1,320 reviews34 followers
June 7, 2021
Read for the third time, June 2016.
This simply fits whenever I need something of a comfort read.
Which I did. Henry makes me smile, although I couldn't help noticing this time how often he uses the phrase 'I'm going to die'.
Still a fab read.

Reread December 2020

What a fabulous comfort read! Just what I needed!

Original review:

I think I had a smile on my face all the way through. And the reasons were manifold:

.) great MCs:
Henry is a quirky, funny, extremely likeable guy on the slightly heavier side with a wicked ('TJ Klunish' type) sense of humour. And didn't I love that N.R. Walker touches upon the dreaded subject of weight loss. It was easy to bond with Henry just over that! Not to speak about his love of cooking (and boy, did my mouth water at the mention of all those lovely dishes!) and his overall cuteness.

Reed is the epitome of a 'gentle giant with a soft heart'. He is so lovely it was a bit on the surreal side, but I'm sure he puts knives the wrong way into the dishwasher and leaves smelly socks in unsavoury places - we just never got to hear about it. :) No, seriously, he is a genuinely nice who has a lot of deep thoughts about body image and what it does to people.

.) the plot: it is easy, simple, but it totally works.

.) the secondary characters:
Henry's mum and her George Clooney obsession made me giggle.
Anika was my favourite of all the friends - she is just as crazy as Henry, and their relationship was more like brother/sister than anything else. She clearly loves Henry and is looking out for him in a big way.

.) Henry suffering through all the exercise really struck a chord with me. I felt for him. I wanted to encourage him (mind, he has got Reed for that anyway) and tell him how much I respect what he is doing. Ok. There were times when I was seriously jealous how amazing and tenacious Henry was with his exercise - despite of all his moans and groans (one little niggle: his 'I'm going to die' was funny for most part, but did get a little repetitive as the plot went along). But that didn't keep me from cheering for him when he bought clothes a seize smaller. Good on you, Henry! Good on you!

.) Ah, the sweetness of the epilogue! My cheeks started to hurt from smiling at this point!

So - this is a really cute, fluffy read you will enjoy when you need some cheering up or something easy on the mind!

Profile Image for ȷαεlα.
644 reviews
October 31, 2016
This has been the best book by NR Walker so far. Absolutely wonderful! Flawless! Total win!

I loved both Henry and Reed. I loved how real Henry was. I loved how Reed helped him rebuild his confidence and not only. Their slow-burn relationship was the best thing that could have happened.

There isn't a single thing I didn't like about this book. It was so so Funny. I laughed so much at what Henry said all the time. He really is a drama queen. His character was amazing. Reed is a sweetheart, too. I liked so much that neither of them was the aggressive/possessive type that we know too well. They were sweet and cute together and perfectly perfect together.

All the secondary characters were beautiful. All Henry and Reed's friends, their families with their support and love made this book more extraordinary.

5***** I wish there were more books of H & R stars!
Profile Image for * A Reader Obsessed *.
2,079 reviews424 followers
June 10, 2017
4 Stars!

Truly a really, really enjoyable read. I would not be surprised to hear just how many people connected with this. I seriously think Henry is my long lost kindred spirit because I could so relate to every one of his snarky comments towards all things exercise and good health.

So, per the blurb, Henry gets a brutal wake up call and is determined to make some changes. Little does he know what’s in store for him as he is mercilessly tortured by his new trainer Reed. Reed however, is not just a pretty face and a smoking hot body. He connects instantly with Henry and hopes for more despite Henry’s reluctance.

This surprisingly was quite funny. If I wasn’t literally laughing out loud, I had a huge grin on my face otherwise. I’m kinda tickled that this was by NR Walker who consistently writes sweet and low angst books, but I had no idea the sense of humor this author had in her. Henry and Reed were each very likeable, and how they became friends to lovers just warmed my heart. A very easy, feel good story about accepting one’s self, looking beyond the superficial, and finding love when and where you least expect it.
Profile Image for Niinii.
283 reviews
June 2, 2019
This is so far my favorite N. R. Walker's book. The romance is a slow burn and the message behind the story was well delivered. It never felt cheesy. Henry also made me laugh out loud quite a few times. *sigh* such a good comfort read!
Profile Image for Nicola.
1,393 reviews241 followers
February 6, 2017
This was one of those little treats that you discover when your Bookbub daily offers email lands in your inbox. A feel good journey of making changes in you life for you and no one else and finding love along the way, it was worth every penny.

"You’re the Disney prince, and I’m Shrek."

It didn't hold any particular surprises, but that mattered not, as it's easy-read, humorous, heartfelt and has two fabulous relatable men who complement each other in the best possible ways, making you smile as they discover that they have feelings for one another. And it has the most wonderful of epilogues.

Profile Image for Lost in a Book.
137 reviews103 followers
September 12, 2021
4.5 Stars

Ok, Why did I wait SOOOOO long to “read” this? I adored The Weight of It All and the narration by Joel Leslie is everything needed to bring Henry and Reed to life. I’m not sure I can go any further without mentioning the epic Harry Potter references. AND. ANDDDDDD, Joel Leslie’s impressions while doing them is on point. *happy dance*

Now, where was I? Oh yes, the story.

Henry- gets dumped by his ex for aging and looking like he’s aging. He's desperate to get his ex life back and heads to the gym where he meets Reed.

Reed- large, muscular, abs for miles, never misses a leg day… you get the point. He’s jaded from dating typical gym rats who would rather talk about gym things instead of getting to know him. Reed is also Henry’s new trainer.

Henry and Reed’s interactions are hilarious. They begin as Trainer/trainee and slowly morph into friends on top of their professional gym relationship. A lot of time is spent getting to know each other and they develop a solid foundation that steadily grows into a relationship deeper friendship. Henry has huge insecurities with the battle scars left from his ex that blind him about Reeds affections. His thoughts on how can Mr. Perfect ever want me were understandable but went on for a lonnnnnnnnnnnnng time. They communicated about so much and yet Henry was evasive about his inner dialogue from the one person who *truly* would understand his perspective.

Outside of Henry’s feelings of being inferior, The Weight of It All is a low drama read with tons of humor, great secondary characters, and MCs that complement each other perfectly all the way to an HEA.

As I mentioned before, Joel Leslie killed it on the narration. I was LMAO at his delivery and enjoyed every part of the story.

Definitely recommended. Especially the audio.

Profile Image for *TANYA*.
1,002 reviews280 followers
April 15, 2019
What!?!! I have NEVER laughed so much with a book before. Ever!! (Funny like a Sophie Kinsella, Tessa Dare, Sally Thorne, or Mathew Quick book. ) So well written, super funny, very witty and heart wrenching at times. I could so relate to Henry’s weight struggles. A very good read indeed.
Profile Image for CrabbyPatty.
1,553 reviews169 followers
August 7, 2021
Oh, I loved this book! Sweet story of Henry Beckett, who thinks he has a pretty good life and relationship. That is, until Graham, his live-in boyfriend of eight years, "came home and told me he was done. He didn’t want to spend his life with an overweight old man. I wasn’t fun anymore. I didn’t look after myself anymore. I wasn’t what he wanted."

Henry starts going to the gym and trains with Reed, a Germanic GOD brought to life. They train, they talk, they text, and eventually begin a relationship which is all kinds of sexy and sweet. And that epilogue? PERFECT.

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Profile Image for Ky.
483 reviews59 followers
May 18, 2018
3.5 stars

"The Weight Of It All" is one of the most motivational books I've ever read! If you want to start working out, but you keep postponing it, pick up this story and by the middle of it you will find yourself running along with the MCs.

There's no preaching about how good exercising can be or what an amazing body it helps you develop, and that's the best part. The positive effects it has on everyday life are simply part of the story, subtly there but not in a lecture kind of way. The MC who starts working out feels the difference but it happens bit by bit. It's in the little things that go unnoticed until he does notice them and then the world slows down and he has an epiphany. It's in the realisation that after a month of regular training his clothes start to fit him better and he breaths more easily when he climbs a flight of stairs. It's in the healthy skin color and higher energy levels. This story makes you want to move and find out all those things for yourself.

Henry is recently, like really recently, single, overwheight and slightly depressed about those two things. He decides to join a gym to loose some weight so he can get his boyfriend back, but that doesn't last long. The desire to reconnect with his ex that is, because the gym really stuck with him! His personal trainer is Reed, you can guess about the body he has, who seems really friendly and spends a lot of time with him even away from the gym. Reed helps him build up his physical condition and is encouraging him every step of the way. He instructs him to start eating healthy meals, have a balanced diet and drop the cheesecakes he so loves.

Slowly, a friendship starts to develop as they spend more and more time together and eventually feelings get into the mix too. Henry is realising that his relationship with his ex should have been over years ago and that he likes Reed more than just as a PT. The physical differences between them aren't a problem for Reed but they are a confusion for Henry who has low self esteem and can't imagine ever being attractive to someone with Reed's body.

And here start the niggles I had with this book. While Reed is amazing, caring, supportive and a genuinely nice character, Henry frustrated me from time to time. It was funny how he had no brain-to-mouth filter and how he always managed to say the most awkward things when talking to people but I had a problem with the way he saw Reed. I'll give him that he liked Reed's personality and enjoyed spending time with him, but the focus was on Reed's body and looks so much that I think that, if the roles where reversed, Henry wouldn't even notice Reed. Another thing is the number of times Henry jokingly complained that exercising would kill him. It was okay the first few times, but by the tenth time it had gotten old and by the twentieth is was really over it.

I listened to the audiobook narrated by Joel Leslie. He did a very good job, he was articulate and I could understand everything he said, but something about the way he altered his voice for the different characters bothered me. I know it's difficult to change your voice and still keep talking for long periods of time so I tried to not let it affect my opinion of the narration too much, but his voice for every female character sounded like it was an old person talking. Henry's best friend couldn't have been more than middle thirties and she sounded like she was in her eighties. Also, I don't know what it was, but there was a little exhale at the end whenever Reed was talking. I guess the narrator was trying to make his voice lower and the exhale was a product of his effort but I didn't like it. However, he managed to make the character voices distinctive and that's always good when you listen to a story. His normal voice, which I assume he used for Henry, was very nice and I'm glad that the book had only one POV so Henry's voice is the one he used the most. This narrator may not be my favorite but he did a great job and I'll be sure to pick up more books by him in the future.

This review has been cross-posted on The Novel Approach Reviews.

*A copy of this audiobook was kindly provided to me by the publisher via The Novel Approach Reviews in exchange for an honest review. *
Profile Image for Mirjana **DTR - Down to Read**.
1,369 reviews649 followers
June 20, 2018

***5 Stars***

"...we do belong together. Because you get me, and I can talk to you and be with you like it's the easiest thing in the world."


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I'm so mad at myself for letting it sit on my kindle for so long. I don't know why I always passed it by when I was looking for something to read. N.R. Walker is one of my favorite authors, and I'm so disappointed in myself.

I read this thing in practially one sitting!!

This book had it all...humor, heart, relatability and all those amazing butterflies you get while reading a romance novel.

What's one of my favorite things about this book? It doesn't focus on weight loss, even though it's a central component of the book. This book is about being happy and healthy. About being the awesome person you are and feeling comfortable in your own skin. And ALL OF THAT is achieved without being preachy....BRAVO N.R. WALKER!!

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The second thing I loved about this book? The pacing.

Henry didn't jump into a relationship. He wasn't cured and magically happy because he got fitter, healthier, or found love with a new man.

Reed and Henry formed a friendship first. A solid foundation to build everything else on. And from there, it was just inevitable perfection.

There's so much to gush about this book, which I could probably do for paragraphs on end...but all I'm gonna say is if you want a book to make you smile, make you swoon, and give you all those happy butterflies....PICK UP THIS BOOK!!

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