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Man and Boy

(Harry Silver #1)

3.57  ·  Rating details ·  15,070 ratings  ·  665 reviews
Harry had it all: a beautiful wife, an adorable four-year-old son, and a high-paying media job. But on the eve of his thirtieth birthday, with one irresponsible act, he threw it all away. Suddenly he finds himself an unemployed single father trying to figure out how to wash his son's
Paperback, 368 pages
Published May 7th 2002 by Touchstone (first published 1999)
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Average rating 3.57  · 
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 ·  15,070 ratings  ·  665 reviews

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Jul 14, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
For the most part pedestrian, relying on stereotypical characters and clichéd narrative – Tony Parson’s mildly diverting novels certainly served a purpose in the late 1990’s / early 2000’s when they first starting coming out – giving permission and opening the door the perhaps previously non-book reading 30/40-something lads/men to read about and indulge in stories of other men and the various life dilemmas faced by the pre-millennial male in modern society, providing characters they could ident ...more
Nov 20, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: drama
*****SPOILERS AHEAD (but maybe they will help You to skip this book, I hope)******

Whole book I was waiting for main character to realize his mistake, that sleeping with another woman besides his wife, EVEN FOR ONE NIGHT, is WRONG. That's the only reason I kept reading. But my waiting didn't pay off. Through whole book I was reading Harry's wining how life is unfair, how everyone is talking to him that he is hopeless romantic (wtf???), how he is the victim that wife left him. He also didn't tell
Jun 28, 2008 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Those not familiar with Kramer v. Kramer
This is an engaging, smooth read and I would have rated it higher had I never read/seen "Kramer v. Kramer." I really felt this was borderline plagarism and was very surprised the author could get away with recreating so much of that story, right down to details like carrying the child when he is injured on the playground. I am also surprised that 25 years later this story plays well. When Kramer came out, most men didn't have a clue about real hands-on parenting and a man with custody was unhear ...more
Jul 04, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Truth. That's what I kept thinking as I was reading this book. It's true and it's raw. It's sad and it's happy. Tony Parsons has a certain way of making the characters so real. I felt I knew Harry Silver. Really knew him, as a friend.

I guess stories like this don't really need to be complicated to really draw readers in. In the first few chapters I was devastated when Gina and Harry break up. I actually felt pain for Harry during his tiny mid-life crisis when he sleeps with another woman. The bo
Feb 02, 2009 rated it it was ok
I definately preferred "About a Boy"- Nick Hornby has no competition whatsoever from Tony Parsons. Parsons tries to be funny. Fails, of course, but then it's made more pathetic by the fact that he totally pulls the heart strings to their fullest extent at the end. And that doesn't quite work. It was almost boring. Almost as bad as Jack Sheffield! [That's saying something:].
Oct 15, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
How on earth did this sell a million copies?? Do not read!!
Mar 08, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: novel
reading "Man and Boy" is like listening to an easy-listening pop song. it is sweet, easy to guess, nothing in particular. it goes well, as usual, and everybody likes it. it is just; i am not really into pop music.

though is beatifully written, i dont find any sense to fill up my soul after reading this book. it is just a too-easy-to-guess and happy ending story, good for the young couples.

i think it will be better if the story of the father and the son (read: man and boy) is brought up more deep
Louise Jones
Every character was awful and I have no idea what this book was meant to be about.
Feb 26, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, read-in-2017
I really wanted to read this book and finally got round to it. I felt it started with a bit of promise but kind of didn't get better.

Meet Harry, happily married with a little boy and a good job. He cheats on his wife and she leaves him and also his contract isn't renewed at work. His wife is very upset as she gave up her dream to go to Tokyo to be with Harry and decides that she's going to go as a result. She leaves their son behind and Harry now has to be a parent to his son, a job that took h
Oct 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Joey Woolfardis
Dec 10, 2015 marked it as to-read-book
[To be read in paperback, urgent as part of #InfiniteVariety2016.]
Harry Silver has everything that most people would envy to have: a beautiful spouse,great job in the media and a wonderful son. On the other hand, while most will love to have that kind of life, they do not realize the sacrifice that comes with it. Harry threw it all away after a one night stand, now he struggles to being a single parent and his ex often wonders if he is capable of taking on such a big responsibility. Raising his son alone is really hard, he asks common questions such as: Should ...more
Tanya Parsons
Jan 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
Overall I thoroughly enjoyed the book and found it very interesting to see a familiar enough story from an almost exclusively male view point. I did, I think because I'm a woman, feel irritated by the main man's somewhat blasé (in my opinion) attitude towards his and other male characters' misdemeanors. Is this, maybe, a true insight in to how worryingly differently men and women see certain things? I think the grandfather, son, grandson relationships were the highlight of the book and I think t ...more
Aug 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Love means knowing when to let go."
The main reason why I borrowed this book from the library was that one of the reviews stated: "I cried five times and laughed out four." I love books that can make you smile and cry at the same time and this book is definitely one of those. Very beautifully written and insightful too. Gives you a pretty good idea about children from broken families and their upbringing.
Feb 02, 2009 rated it liked it
Solid modern writing. Quick read. A bit derivative of Nick Hornby. I didn't always like the main character - he's a bit of a prat sometimes - but I guess that's part of the point, isn't it? If John Cusack isn't cast as Harry in the movie version (which I'm afraid is inevitable), I'll be shocked.
Nur Mohd
This book feels honest and real. People makes mistakes. People wants second chances. People can be unforgiving. Fairy tales dont always exist.
Jan 11, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2005
My expectations on this book were high. And as soon as I finaly got it from the library I Couldn't keep myself away from it. I Loved it from the first page to the last! On the cover it says that James brown has said in the Observer that he cried five times and laughed out loud four. I didn't really really cry, even thou the grandfaither died. He was after all 70 something. And such happens everyday. I'm not saying that it isn't a big dela, cos it is, but I can never get that engaged. Whatever, I ...more
May 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: contemporary
Man and Boy by Tony Parsons is the story of how a man becomes a father to his son, and a son to a father. The affection Harry feels for his family, all of it, is obvious from the first page. As evident is Harry’s sense of self. He comes to realise that what he feels isn’t always enough, though. Approaching his thirtieth birthday, Harry is lost in between. He is no longer a child, but does not feel properly mature. He is married, but is unsure what that means. He loves his family, but isn’t quite ...more
Kishel Bactong
Aug 15, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013-read-roll
I laughed and then cried, then some time in the beginning, threw it because of frustration. This book had me. It tugged my heart and lifted up some of the pessimistic views I have about love and men, life in general.

This novel is about a producer, a husband and a father who made a mistake that caused him his wife. At first, I can't feel sorry for him. I just cannot find the nerve to forgive men who break their women's heart easily. They deserve to rot or work in a public high school
Janie Johnson
Jan 16, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014-challenge
Tony Parsons is a brand new author for me. I discovered this book earlier in the year and finally decided to pick it up. It felt like a contemporary to me. This was not a blow me away, wow me book by any means but it was so well told, and so heart felt. This author can definitely tug on the readers heart strings. And if you don't feel something while you read this book then you need to turn your emotions on.

Set in England you have this story of a beautiful family, Gina, Harry and their 4 year ol
Bev Taylor
Sep 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
join harry who is about to celebrate being 30

he has made a list of 5 things to avoid at this age - and by breaking one he manages to break the rest

follow his life as to loses his wife, tries to bring up his son on his own, learns more and appreciates his own parents more and finds new love and loses it again

a well written novel that really touches the heart and makes u think. plus appreciate things more which u have previously taken for granted

just a few questions - he has bought cat food in
Michael Armijo
Nov 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
A British best-seller...

B+ to this one! I found this book at an airport bookstore in London, England. It was a British bestseller at the time. I was intrigued by the title. It ended up reminding me how "lucky" I have been in my life. Life is unpredictable and we must be happy no matter what it takes. There was one event in the book that TOTALLY surprised me, catching me totally offguard. That's a 'real find' in a book! This isn't a depressing's a book about real-life, love and savoring
Badly Drawn Girl
Jul 21, 2010 rated it really liked it

This was a "beach read" book for me, meaning I didn't except it to me much more than a cliched, easy reader that would be enjoyable in a mindless sort of way. But I quickly found myself totally involved in the book and the characters. Tony Parsons has taken an overdone topic and done it right. The emotions are spot on, the dialogue is believable, the plot is engaging and intriguing. My only grip is the ending which felt a bit forced but honestly it's a small thing in terms of the rest of the boo
Feb 19, 2016 rated it liked it
I love to read about a character who starts off as a total screw up, but manages to figure things out, and that process can bring a wide range of emotions to the reader. This guy, Harry, messes up big time by having a stupid one night stand, loses his wife, but is left to raise his 4 year old son on his own. Through the process of figuring out parenting, which is often quite funny and endearing, he is able to reflect on his own relationship with his dad, and that experience (don't want to spoil ...more
I chose it mainly because I hoped it'd be simple enough for me to read it in Serbian to practice my language skills. (It was.) I understood about only 70-80% of the thing so I guess rating it would be a bit unfair. After all, I knew I'm not getting a masterpiece here so there's no point in judging it too seriously. The plot was simple, full of clichés and self-pitying characters. I couldn't really remember why it seemed so familiar until the author actually mentioned Kramer vs. Kramer. Bingo. Ju ...more
Jan 23, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a lovely, if somewhat unremarkable, book about a young dad whose world collapses around him after he cheats on his wife. The story follows his redemption as a man and as a father to his young son, but it's just as much about his relationship with his own father as anything.

It was a good – and fast – read with some poignant moments but it was a bit too sugary sweet and unrealistic for my taste.
Nga Nguyễn Phương
Your child isn't only your child, he/she is also your teacher who teach you how to be absolutely good parents.
Apr 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Jan 13, 2019 rated it did not like it
Waste of time.
Sep 22, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It started out really slow, but I got invested in the story eventually and ended up liking it a lot!
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There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

Tony Parsons (born 6 November 1953) is a British journalist broadcaster and author. He began his career as a music journalist on the NME, writing about punk music. Later, he wrote for The Daily Telegraph, before going on to write his current column for the Daily Mirror. Parsons was for a time a regular guest on the BBC Two arts

Other books in the series

Harry Silver (3 books)
  • Man and Wife (Harry Silver, #2)
  • Men From The Boys (Harry Silver, #3)

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