Less (Winner of the Pulitzer Prize)

Less (Winner of the Pulitzer Prize) by Andrew Sean Greer Book Summary

A struggling novelist travels the world to avoid an awkward wedding in this hilarious Pulitzer Prize-winning novel full of "arresting lyricism and beauty" (The New York Times Book Review).

National Bestseller
A New York Times Notable Book of 2017
A Washington Post Top Ten Book of 2017
A San Francisco Chronicle Top Ten Book of 2017
Longlisted for the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence, the Lambda Award, and the California Book Award

Who says you can't run away from your problems? You are a failed novelist about to turn fifty. A wedding invitation arrives in the mail: your boyfriend of the past nine years is engaged to someone else. You can't say yes--it would be too awkward--and you can't say no--it would look like defeat. On your desk are a series of invitations to half-baked literary events around the world.

QUESTION: How do you arrange to skip town?

ANSWER: You accept them all.

What would possibly go wrong? Arthur Less will almost fall in love in Paris, almost fall to his death in Berlin, barely escape to a Moroccan ski chalet from a Saharan sandstorm, accidentally book himself as the (only) writer-in-residence at a Christian Retreat Center in Southern India, and encounter, on a desert island in the Arabian Sea, the last person on Earth he wants to face. Somewhere in there: he will turn fifty. Through it all, there is his first love. And there is his last.

Because, despite all these mishaps, missteps, misunderstandings and mistakes, Less is, above all, a love story.

A scintillating satire of the American abroad, a rumination on time and the human heart, a bittersweet romance of chances lost, by an author The New York Times has hailed as "inspired, lyrical," "elegiac," "ingenious," as well as "too sappy by half," Less shows a writer at the peak of his talents raising the curtain on our shared human comedy.

"I could not love LESS more."--Ron Charles, The Washington Post

"Andrew Sean Greer's Less is excellent company. It's no less than bedazzling, bewitching and be-wonderful."--Christopher Buckley, The New York Times Book Review

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Less (Winner of the Pulitzer Prize) (Andrew Sean Greer) Book Reviews

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- Less1 star

I’m either losing my cognitive abilities or this book really does not make any sense.

- Less is more!5 star

I had a hard time getting started with the book. The style of writing was confusing but I stuck with it and ended up loving it. Best ending I’ve read in a long time. Parts of it made me laugh out loud.

- About a gay guy.1 star

So, I have mixed feelings about this book. I found it hard to identify with the character and I stopped reading before I got through the first chapter. I totally support the LGBT community, but I think if this guy was straight talking about the women he dated, I think I would have had the same reaction. He had a very casual relationship with this guy and lots of others too and all of a sudden, he has to run away from his wedding? Really?

- Brilliant5 star

I read this book on a whim, I’m so glad I did. It’s brilliantly beautiful.

- yes.5 star

What a completely enchanting book. I loved it and loved the heart cracking beauty of my own life a bit more after reading.

- Less5 star

Great job Andrew Greer

- Slow build, leaves you thinking5 star

This book reads like a page-turning summer read overall but every once in a while you get whacked with a solid upper cut that leaves you breathless and wondering where it came from. At several points, I had to stop and reread sections to get the full effect. 2/3 of the way through the book, I was sold but still not convinced of the Pulitzer status. The second I finished the last page, tears streaming down my face, however, I already knew I needed to read it again. Arthur Less is at once the most boring and most relatable character I’ve read in years. He is me, us. Reading his story made me think about my own life experiences, my own desires and fears. Less has a wonderful, easy quality to it. It reads quickly but delivers pleasing moments of mysticism, philosophy, romance, self-help, and even religion. It makes you think without being heavy or demanding. I’m rereading as we speak and will likely pass through it a few more times before I’m done. I highly recommend this book to anyone who’s ever loved or been loved.

- Less5 star

A wonderful story of life and love.

- Ahhh5 star

Words can ensnare you when writing a review so allow me to be succinct. It was perfect

- More of Less, Please!5 star

Andrew Sean Greer introduces us to Less, a middling writer suffering from a double heartbreak. The character is a bit befuddled by circumstances, too trusting by half, and in for the trip of a lifetime. By the end of the book I was completely enamours by both Less and his creator. The writing is impeccable, the humor is equal parts mad-cap and poignant, and the story is a delight to read. I’m very much looking forward to Mr. Greer’s next work.

- Read “Less"5 star

This book is a gem. Beautifully written; the words flow like a mellifluous score.

- Less2 star

I have to admit that I don't read novels about gay characters because I don't want to read stories about people who make disparaging remarks about faith, morality, and life that has more meaning than just gratifying sexual self. I would not have bought this novel if the synopsis had given this information! It is sad to read about a life so ruined by promiscuity, drugs, and self deprecation, that I had a hard time finishing it! It's easy to see why Less didn't like his life, was never satisfied with what he had, and why he never thought he was worthy to love!! So sad that he always felt inferior to Roberts "superior" intelligence. How older men always wanted to touch his innocence! Yuck!!!

- Excellent story5 star

Couldn’t put it down, beautifully written.

- Less5 star

This is a beautiful and compelling work. A journey through portals of time, through memory and love. Such compositions are rare. This one is rarer still; it speaks of humanity and the frailty of life but with a wink to the absurdness of it all. Bravo.

- Less1 star

Worst book I have ever purchased. Don't waste your time or money.

- Gets better with every page!5 star

This was an adorable and charming read. Like a delicious, well-portioned meal, it leaves you perfectly satisfied.

- Do gay men never grow up?3 star

The content is very well written. The story is ridiculous. The characters never developed or matured, thus the story is very one note. I struggled to finish.

- Sis Lee5 star

Beautiful! Descriptions of travel and places visited were pure poetry. Introspective language funny and poignant. A must read

- Magnificent5 star

A magnificent novel. Humorous, poignant and masterfully written, I am now an ASG fan for life.

- Excellent but Predictable4 star

The ending was cliche, but the journey to get there was impeccable. Totally worth it. So glad I read this!

- FCC5 star


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- Less4 star

Four and a half stars. Though the first half of this book was digested only in intermittent readings as the prose caught me, but the story did not quite, the second half pulled me in, increasing it’s hold, pulling smiles and chuckles until I woke early to find out what came next. It’s humour laced with sadness wrung tears from me too - though not the tragic. The best writing bits for me were in the last poetic chunk. Where metaphors and themes came together. There were many peek-holes into life’s quirks, perfectly described. Such as a certain passage about the death of a loved one or how the authors illustrates how truthfully we humans most often fall in love unceremoniously, in the strangest ways and in benign, habitual moments. These passages are breathtaking in their telling. Throughout the story, the writer’s tale is woven in comedy and also a wry realism that plays with tragedy. Making for a delicious rescue of our protagonist and celebrating finding one’s own purpose and true love.

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Less (Winner of the Pulitzer Prize): A Novel

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Less (Winner of the Pulitzer Prize): A Novel

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Less (Winner of the Pulitzer Prize): A Novel

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Less (Winner of the Pulitzer Prize): A Novel

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LESS is one of my all-time favorite books. It's funny and poignant and bookish and the ending is so satisfying. Fiv…

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