How Not to Die Alone

How Not to Die Alone

Book - 2019
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Andrew's day-to-day is a little grim, searching for next of kin for those who die alone. Thankfully, he has a loving family waiting for him when he gets home, to help wash the day's cares away. At least, that's what his coworkers believe. Andrew didn't mean for the misunderstanding to happen, yet he's become trapped in his own white lie. The fantasy of his wife and two kids has become a pleasant escape from his lonely one bedroom with only his Ella Fitzgerald records for company. But when new employee Peggy breezes into his life like a breath of fresh air, Andrew is shaken out of his routine. She doesn't notice the wall he's been safely hiding behind and their friendship promises to break it down. Andrew must choose: Does he tell the truth and start really living his life, but risk losing his friendship with Peggy? Or will he stay safe and alone, behind the façade? How Not to Die Alone is about the importance of taking a chance in those moments when we have the most to lose. Sharp and funny, warm and real, it's the kind of big-hearted story we all need.
Publisher: New York : G.P. Putnam's Sons, 2019.
Copyright Date: ©2019
ISBN: 9780525539889
Branch Call Number: FIC ROPER
Characteristics: 324 pages ; 24 cm


From Library Staff

This novel about a man who has to keep up the pretense of a family that doesn’t exist is hilarious and moving in equal measure.

After a job interview results in being hired, Andrew must keep up the ruse of a happy (nonexistent) family. His spreadsheet helps. This moving, hilarious novel had me laughing out loud. Suggested by Marie B.

From the critics

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Apr 04, 2020

Everything towards the end was pretty meh, but I thought the writing and dialogue was genuinely pretty funny.

Jan 26, 2020

I waited and waited for my turn to read this. Lots of people had requested it. Took about 10 weeks. I was expecting something so much better. It seemed padded with writing that was unnecessary and predictable. It was an OK story - and I suppose the author was trying to create surprises. But it was way too melodramatic for me.

Jan 07, 2020

Love love love this book! I didn't expect to love it so much given the premise but the characters are likeable and seem real, I couldn't put it down and definitely stayed up long past my bedtime reading this. It's quite easy reading and the main character's job is kind of fascinating too. I liked reading about his workplace dynamics, a bit reminiscent of the office in some ways. One of the rare books I was sad to finish yet eagerly reading huge chunks at a time.

Dec 29, 2019

Not too sad. Quirky main character. Reminded me a bit of A Man Called Ove or The Rosie Project.

Oct 11, 2019

This is a real heart warming, funny first novel. A real gem. I loved it.

Oct 10, 2019

A heartwarmingly funny look at overcoming grief and the universal need to love and be loved.

Oct 08, 2019

So very funny, and also touching at times. This is a book somewhat similar in theme to Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, which is one I've recommended many times to friends, but in this case the main character is male, albeit equally hilarious in his reactions and equally susceptible and unable to deal with normal life as Eleanor was. I thoroughly enjoyed this one, and hope the author comes up with more.

Sep 30, 2019

this story has a vibe similar to eleanor oliphant is completely fine or educating rita. I almost DNF but it had its charming/quirky moments

Sep 30, 2019

This book begins with a dark premise -- a man who makes arrangements for people who die alone -- and a protagonist who is deeply troubled. The author made me really feel the pain of his daily existence, but deftly led the character through a realistic reawakening and healing. The story is funny and entertaining while examining some pretty existential questions. I loved it.

Sep 14, 2019

A great premise (who does look after people who die alone?), exceptionally well written, and without the maudlin or overly romantic/optimistic overtones that dull the sharp edges.

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Sep 14, 2019

"Hippies, it turned out, didn't age well."


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