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In One Person: A Novel | [John Irving]

In One Person: A Novel

A compelling novel of desire, secrecy, and sexual identity, In One Person is a story of unfulfilled love—tormented, funny, and affecting—and an impassioned embrace of our sexual differences. Billy, the bisexual narrator and main character of In One Person, tells the tragicomic story (lasting more than half a century) of his life as a “sexual suspect,” a phrase first used by John Irving in 1978 in his landmark novel of “terminal cases,” The World According to Garp.
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Publisher's Summary

A compelling novel of desire, secrecy, and sexual identity, In One Person is a story of unfulfilled love—tormented, funny, and affecting—and an impassioned embrace of our sexual differences. Billy, the bisexual narrator and main character of In One Person, tells the tragicomic story (lasting more than half a century) of his life as a “sexual suspect,” a phrase first used by John Irving in 1978 in his landmark novel of “terminal cases,” The World According to Garp.

His most political novel since The Cider House Rules and A Prayer for Owen Meany, John Irving’s In One Person is a poignant tribute to Billy’s friends and lovers—a theatrical cast of characters who defy category and convention. Not least, In One Person is an intimate and unforgettable portrait of the solitariness of a bisexual man who is dedicated to making himself “worthwhile.”

©2012 Garp Enterprises, Ltd. (P)2012 Simon & Schuster

What the Critics Say

"A profound truth is arrived at in these pages. It is Irving at his most daring, at his most ambitious. It is America and American writing, both at their very best.” (Abraham Verghese)

"His most daringly political, sexually transgressive, and moving novel in well over a decade." (Vanity Fair)

In One Person is a rich and absorbing book, even beautiful.” (Esquire)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (565 )
5 star
 (193)
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3 star
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2 star
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Overall
3.8 (480 )
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1 star
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4.2 (474 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
 (9)
Performance
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  •  
    Margaret 05-18-12
    Margaret 05-18-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    39
    1
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    "Very Disappointing"
    What would have made In One Person better?

    This does not seem like a contemporary novel. There is endless tedium in references to Shakespearean characters and other classical literature/opera. There seems be more of this kind of dialog than there is story. I have enjoyed other Irving novels, but this was a waste of money....not sure if I can even finish it.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    No.


    2 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joseph SHERWOOD, WI, United States 10-31-12
    Joseph SHERWOOD, WI, United States 10-31-12 Member Since 2009
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    173
    5
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Irving's WORST!"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    A very difficult book to relate to. I can't think of the minuscule audience it might appeal to but those may be my limitations. I tried. Put it down three times. Eventually finished it but there were no redeeming features for my efforts.


    Would you ever listen to anything by John Irving again?

    Yes! I've enjoyed Irving a great deal over the years. This one relating to the difficulties transsexuals encounter in growing up, the difficulties faced in having sexual relations (over and over) all of this without relief was beyond my pail (pale?).


    Have you listened to any of John Benjamin Hickey’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    He's a good reader.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    None that I could find. I'm returning it.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carol Bronx, New York, United States 08-14-12
    Carol Bronx, New York, United States 08-14-12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "john irving does it again"
    What made the experience of listening to In One Person the most enjoyable?

    John Irvings quirky insites to peoples lives.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Billy and his Grandfather


    Have you listened to any of John Benjamin Hickey’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    excellant as always.


    If you could take any character from In One Person out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Billy


    Any additional comments?

    I think I am now a reall Irving fan and would love to meet him. Send him on tour to Australia

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Larry Crosby, TX, United States 06-27-12
    Larry Crosby, TX, United States 06-27-12 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    14
    9
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Story
    "Horrible story, good book."
    Where does In One Person rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    7 out of 10


    What did you like best about this story?

    John Irving could write about protoplasm and make it interesting.


    Have you listened to any of John Benjamin Hickey’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    He sounded familiar, smooth delivery, I'll remember his name.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    By bringing to life the arrogent, in your face, selfish attitudes and life styles of the homosexuals, transexual, and perverse characters in this book and by detailing the resulting agonizing death and despair that this lifestyle has brought to society, Mr. Irving has only served to further alinate real life homosexuals to mainstream society.By serving up what most folks in our society find perverse and taboo and presenting it as normal does not enlighten, it repulses.


    Any additional comments?

    Any author that can write a story that angers and repulses, but at the same time captivate a reader(listener) is a great writer. I will stand in line to read Irving's next offering.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Linda Middleburg, VA, United States 06-21-12
    Linda Middleburg, VA, United States 06-21-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    98
    5
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    "Loved this book!"

    Irving has lost nothing of his humor nor unabashed irreverence. I found myself laughing out loud throughout the book. A great "READ"

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Lockport, NY, United States 06-07-12
    Richard Lockport, NY, United States 06-07-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    40
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    28
    25
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    "John Irving at his best"

    at first I was not sure that I wanted to listen to a novel based primarily on cross dressing and the gay life. I am sure glad I didn't give in to that initial attitude. riviting, inciteful and real. My only regret is that it was not written 20 years earlier.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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