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A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius Audiobook

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius

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Publisher's Summary

Dave Eggers scored a worldwide phenomenon with this memoir that topped national best-seller lists and has since become a staple for summer reading and book clubs. A compelling voice for Generation X, Eggers hererecounts his early 20s, caring for his younger brother after their parents’ unexpected deaths and his endeavors in a variety of media.

©2000 David K. Eggers (P)2010 Recorded Books, LLC

What the Critics Say

“Not just for the MTV-fan age group, this is a very entertaining, well-written book.” (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.6 (475 )
5 star
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Overall
3.6 (358 )
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4.1 (356 )
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Dawn Amelia Courthouse, VA, United States 07-18-14
    Dawn Amelia Courthouse, VA, United States 07-18-14 Member Since 2010

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Explosive chaos with humor and tenderness"
    Any additional comments?

    This book has wide appeal, I have no doubt. It is written in the rapid fire language of the modern sensibilities with both humor and insight. One thing that might be noteworthy is the building of tension through this superb narration: I had to read it in smaller chunks rather than listen for long periods of time, otherwise, the chaos tended to be overwhelming. It has a great sense of voice for the current generation, and a good feel for confusion that is fueled by youthful optimism, only the best kind. I'd listen to it again, though…. later, after I rest my brain a bit.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jack Douglasville, GA, United States 07-13-13
    Jack Douglasville, GA, United States 07-13-13 Member Since 2012

    Beanstalk, USA

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Ready For Ritalin"
    What made the experience of listening to A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius the most enjoyable?

    Youth and beauty conquer age and cunning.


    What other book might you compare A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius to and why?

    Fortress Of Solitude meets Extremely Loud And Incredibly Close.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Any time the two brothers "got" each other.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Persistent yet patient.


    Any additional comments?

    Characters could be more believable?

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Scott 02-10-17
    Scott 02-10-17 Member Since 2012
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    "Kinetic and Exhausting with Phenominaal Narration"
    Any additional comments?

    This book is like one long run on sentence. It's all stream of consciousness, which is exciting at first, then tiring, then revelatory. I found the last 2/3 to be a bit of a slog, but overall it was worth the listen. I must say, Dion Graham's narration is spectacular, reminding me at times of slam poet. Great match of narrator and subject matter.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sstarr 02-08-17
    Sstarr 02-08-17
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Is This Dion Graham's Story??"
    Would you listen to A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius again? Why?

    Maybe, because I am sure to have missed so much in the first pass. With so many thoughts streaming and trying to connect all the dots, the book is filled with relevant information to both his story and to his generation. Also, the author's thoughts - leaping from one subject to another then to another etc., are more like my own than I care to admit - though his are more imaginative and better articulated. Also, I might want to listen more carefully to the messages trying to emerge as there are so many things going on at the same time. On the other hand, I may not want to listen again just because it is too hard to hang in there for so long . . . I'm not that curious.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The protagonist is my favorite character - sometimes making me empathize, feel sorry for, support, encourage, and understand him; other times making me squirm, dislike, be revolted by, and totally disagree with him. But either way, from the beginning, I was not surprised at anything he says or does. If he really is the person he describes, he must drive himself and others crazy. Yet, you can't help but like him as he tries so hard to honor his Mother and care for his brother - there is a big heart in there. To lose both parents at such a young age and try to parent a sibling while so young took remarkable courage and I admire him for that.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Really can't pinpoint one scene - I really enjoyed the scenes where the brothers played frisbee together, his descriptions of his brother or any scene where the protagonist describes his relationship to his brother. His feelings for his brother's presence in his life are mixed (sometimes loving, sometimes resentful) but he remains loyal to his mission of caring for him even though he doesn't really know how to do that and often does it poorly. I also enjoyed the scenes where there is actual dialogue because it gives an even clearer picture of who this guy is and what his motives are. (If I had to pick one, maybe the scene where Eggers is disposing of his Mother's ashes).


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    "Catch Me If You Can!" "Mind Games" "Dazed and Confused" This book could never be made into a movie as is because no actor could deliver that many lines . . .


    Any additional comments?

    This is an amazingly written book and the narrator does the most excellent job with it - I had to keep reminding myself that he wasn't the author. It almost seems impossible that anyone other than the person speaking could be responsible for the words themselves. The delivery is perfection!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Melinda Childs 01-19-17 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I'm torn"
    Any additional comments?

    The narrator is amazing. I can't get over how he portrays everyone. He has such liveliness in his voice, like it's his story.
    The inner-voice-esque writing is at some points great, and at other points irritating. I get a little lost in all of the dialogue.
    But overall it was good.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    colprubin Tel Aviv, Israel 01-27-16
    colprubin Tel Aviv, Israel 01-27-16 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not a reading, a performance"

    Big kudos to Dion Graham whose spectacular reading brought this book to life
    Also kudos, of course, to Eggers for pathos and humor in sharing his life

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    phillip 03-14-15
    phillip 03-14-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Overall Awesome"

    Reader is animated and fun, he makes the entire book exciting, I couldn't take my headphones off!

    Book is deep, funny, and wildly entertaining

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Daniel Almeida Pompano Beach, FL 01-09-15
    Daniel Almeida Pompano Beach, FL 01-09-15 Member Since 2016
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    "Very interesting book"

    The way D. Eggers tell his story is very interesting and detailed. He goes back and forth, always between telling what's happening and describing who he is with or how he feels. The narrator is incredible. Fantastic performance.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nate Jackson, MS, United States 11-22-13
    Nate Jackson, MS, United States 11-22-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Bridge Between Stream of Consciousness & PoMo Lit"

    You can't write a book like this without JD Salinger. You also can't get the genius of George Saunders without this work. So as a bridge connecting Tenth of December to The Catcher in the Rye, I am very grateful for its existence. As for its own merit, it was honest and rambly and self-pitying and desperate and depressing and irritating -- with what ended up to be very little heart. Or at least it didn't translate into heart for me. Being disgruntled with life and the lemon-throwing machine it can be only transcends it if the characters can overcome and grow from how they handle the challenges.

    7 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    danni Sointula, BC, Canada 02-14-11
    danni Sointula, BC, Canada 02-14-11 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A beautiful book for a lover of words"

    . I'm so glad I got this book in audio. Dion Graham's reading is art in it's self. Sometimes I'd run back a part just to listen to the words again.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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