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Holding the Man

Narrated by: Stephen Phillips
Length: 9 hrs and 51 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (64 ratings)

Non-member price: $29.95

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Publisher's Summary

The mid-'70s: at an all-boys Catholic school in Melbourne, Timothy Conigrave falls wildly and sweetly in love with the captain of the football team. So begins a relationship that weathers disapproval, separation and ultimately death.

With honesty and insight, Holding the Man explores the highs and lows of any partnership and the strength of heart both men have to find when they test positive for HIV. This is a book as refreshing and uplifting as it is moving - a funny and sad and celebratory account of growing up gay.

©2009 Timothy Conigrave (P)2016 Audible, Ltd

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Average Customer Ratings

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  • Roy
  • 22-02-2019

Emotional, echoing with my own life

It hurts so badly because it was so beautifully written and so melancholy of Life Love and Death.
I struggled to sit with my own emotions as I listened to it, I hope at the end Tim was able to find peace with John. May they both rest in peace. Thank you audible.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Heartbreakingly Beautiful

A heartbreakingly beautiful story, beautifully performed by Stephen Phillips. Every time I finish this story I tell myself I can't do it again - but its joy and power as an Australian gay narrative brings me back time and again.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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really good

read it all in one day, couldn't put it down. very good representation of the young gay experience

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Holding the Man

I had watched the movie and didn't know that it was a book, whenever I find this out I always read the book because they are usually better than the movie. I really enjoyed this book, it was very sad in parts but a beautiful love story!!

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awesome listen!

Great book with excellent descriptive insight. I loved listening to it. Great actor chosen to read the book.

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Just a must read/listen book

I have seen the movie, watched the doco and finally the book it’s is a must !

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horrible reader, great story

loved the storyline but the reader's pronounciation of the "s" letter is ear bleeding! sounds like nails on a whiteboard! i had to lower my volume! e.g "kid(S) get harra(SS)ed at (S)chool" ouch... my eardrums.

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  • Lee Kelly
  • 08-09-2016

An Beautiful Love Story!

This is the only book the ever made me cry. A wonderful memoir of two people at the dawning of a new world and the harsh realities of opposition they faced. A true inspirational life long love story.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Ijeoma
  • 08-02-2018

An Informative and Interesting Book

I would give this audiobook 5 stars, but Tim cheated on John so many times. In fact, it makes me question how much he loved him because it doesn’t make sense to cheat on someone you love. He didn’t always want to take care of him when he (John) was sick and he wanted to sleep on their couch instead of their bed because John coughed excessively. I don’t think this is fair. Tim judged people for having AIDS and he doesn’t see anything wrong with Nestle’s history in Africa and thinks his friend Ian is overreacting when he decides to boycott Nescafé. Aside from these things, it’s interesting, informative, honest, funny, moving, and romantic. This book showed me the importance of educating myself about AIDS and having safe sex. Tim brought boyish adolescence to life and as someone who isn’t Catholic, I enjoyed listening to how they practice their religion. This audiobook is filled with lots of passion between John and Tim, which makes it more upsetting that Tim would have as many affairs as he did. Maybe I have trouble understanding the affairs because I’m not a gay man, but saying this would mean that every gay man is promiscuous and this is not true. Last, but not least, the narrator (Stephen Phillips) is exceptionally good. He is Australian. I hope he narrates more books. He really did a wonderful job!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • papa825
  • 21-10-2016

The most beautiful love story

I first saw the movie and was so moved that I wanted more of the intimate story of John & Tim.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Tina
  • 30-08-2016

Beautiful, heart-wrenching

Beautiful, heart-wrenching, candid, true. So glad Tim was able to finish this before he passed. The movie was wonderful, one of my lifetime favourites now, but it's better to read/hear the details of what was going on in Tim's mind. This story will linger in your mind.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 19-08-2016

One of the most real and honest books I've read!

Tim and John's story is beautifully crafted. I was captivated by the narrative and transported to my own experience as a boy at so many places in the story. A tragic yet magical ending. I wish I had had the opportunity to know Tim and John, but thanks, Tim, for sharing so transparently your harsh yet beautiful experience. It is one I will definitely re-read. I saw the movie first and was pleased to find the book on Audible.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Ag
  • 06-08-2016

I love this story, the way it was told.

There's a type of rawness to it and very heartfelt. The ending was powerful and let me wondering about Tim.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Jon
  • 14-05-2019

A moving story about love that will bring you to tears

The writing of Tim about his life and his love of John even in its dark times is the true story of what love actually is.

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  • Whitney Knight
  • 23-01-2019

Breathtaking

This story is devastatingly honest. Listening to this book felt like sitting next to someone as they told you a painful story. So raw and real, you wish you could reach out and give comfort.
Now that Tim and John have obliterated my heart, I am going to go bury my broken feels in chocolate. Rest easy boys, together.

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  • Mandajanex
  • 13-12-2018

just excellent.

I loved the Australian narrator - his voice is melodical. I loved all the Melbourne details.

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  • kalie nutt
  • 21-02-2018

absolutely incredible

narrator is absolutely amazing and this is my absolute favorite book. very happy and defiantly recommend

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  • Andy Sargeant
  • 28-06-2016

Powerful and Stunning

I watched the film first (Which I never normally do) and wanted to know more. This book is one of the most amazing, poignant emotional rollercoaster of a book. What an amazing author who was taken far to soon. This book is a MUST read, just remember the tissues.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Maksim
  • 04-04-2019

John

First I watched the film, I cried so much. Then I just had to read the book, there was so much detail so many aspects that were missing from the film, I cried even more. I’m completely in love with this story. If you’re an open minded person, then this book is for you.

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  • James
  • 10-03-2019

Wonderful love story

I am so grateful the author Tim shared the story of his life and love for John. Sharing their story makes me feel that I actually know you both. Although heartbreaking and haunting, I also admire how lucky you both were to have each other. This story was real, touching and beautiful in spite of the sadness. Thank you.

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  • Ashley
  • 09-01-2019

Beautiful, Raw and Heartbreaking

I’ve seen the movie 3 times and wanted more so I listened to the book and it didn’t disappoint. Such a heartbreaking real story of true love and sexual discovery.

The more people who read and listen to books like this, the more compassionate, understanding and thankful people we will have in the world.

Thank you Tim and John for sharing every bit of your truth and inspiring me. Your love will never die. ❤️❤️❤️

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  • Alan
  • 15-10-2018

Holding back the tears

Having seen the film a few times before I wanted to experience the source material that it was based off of. There are bits from the movie within it of course but its such a lovely and touching memoir of a true love story between two friends through the good and the bad and a touching farewell, where like in the movie adaption the tears aren't held back and like Tim himself they flowed freely

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  • ania
  • 17-07-2018

Very emotional

Very good, emotional and involving book. A beautiful story of the long term relatioship between two boys.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 13-01-2018

Raw and relevant.

Loved it. Brutally reflecting what might have happened to me. and what did not. Re awakened my fears and encouraged my celebration of life as is now unfolds.

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  • Belfast, Ireland
  • 10-01-2018

Must read

Heartbreaking and devastating, I feel like I was a fly on the wall for their entire lives together. A must read ❤️

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  • Davidsmanson
  • 09-10-2017

Rollercoaster of emotion

I struggled at first with the narration of this book as there seemed to be a lisp and a lot of whistling at first, but once the story drags you in, you don't notice it as much!
The book itself is amazingly well written and is a rollercoaster of emotion from start to finish, going through joys of relationships, erotica and horrible pain.
It's not easy to pin down what the book is about, be that homosexuality, HIV, puberty, or just relationships with family and friends.
I feel that thee are parts that have different feels, the first is the most amazingly well written story of puberty and discovering ones sexuality. This is a section that I believe any homosexual male will have various stories in common.
The second part is more about being in a steady relationship and te difficulties that can occur, especially within the LGBT communities.
And the last is the most difficult, about HIV and death.
I made the mistake of listening to this book whilst driving, having to resist the tears along motorways. I will now have to buy and read the book as well as I am sure there are lots of section that would reveal themselves to me as time goes by.

I look forward to relistening!

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 13-08-2016

Hard hitting and tearful

Gentle at first then harder. The story of living with AIDS and the impact it has in a couple.