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Publisher's Summary

Anthony Rapp captures the passion and grit of the theater world as he recounts his life-changing experience in the original cast of the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical Rent.

When Rent opened to thunderous acclaim off-Broadway, Rapp knew that something truly extraordinary had taken shape. But even as people celebrated the show's success, they were also mourning the sudden death of the show's creator.

When Anthony's mom began to lose her battle with cancer, he struggled to balance his theater career with his responsibility to his family. Here, Anthony recounts both the show's huge success and his overwhelming loss. He also shares his experiences discovering his sexuality, the tension it created with his mother, and his struggle to gain her acceptance.

©2006 Anthony Rapp; Published by arrangement with Irene Skolnick Literary Agency
"Add It Up" written by Gordon Gano ©1980, Gorno Music (ASCAP). Used with permission from Gorno Music (Administered by Alan N. Skiena, Esq.)
"Waitin' for the Light to Shine" written by Roger Miller ©1985, All rights administered by Sony/ATV Music Publishing.
(P)2006 Blackstone Audiobooks

What the critics say

"Absorbing, warm, and hopeful, the book celebrates a man, his work, and a generation struggling with AIDS but determined to survive." (Publishers Weekly)

What listeners say about Without You

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Easy listen

This book will mainly appeal to Rent fans. It deals with grief and can get quite sad, the style is casual and the narration is excellent. Book doesn't take much focus and is easy to listen to in short bursts.

1 person found this helpful

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RENTheads, you need this book.

Anthony Rapp not only gives insight to behind the scenes of the Rock Opera RENT, but to how the play merges with parts of his own life, insights and personal experiences that even this straight white spoiled only child relates to. The book reads Ike a story instead of a straight forward biography or fan fiction. If you know RENT, you need this book.

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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Mike
  • 2010-05-19

Touching stories of loss

Some reviews here complain about Anthony Rapp being self-centered and shallow. I find this couldn't be further from the truth.
This book is the story about one man's experience with loss. The loss of a grandfather he barely knew. The loss of Jonathan Larson, friend and creator of the musical that Anthony had seen come to fruition. His own mother's cancer.
While he is very concerned with his own feelings through many points in this book, he displays remarkable honesty. Showing his anger at himself, at those around him. He talks about the kinds of things that we all go through when we suffer great loss, but are afraid to admit to.
He isn't always portrayed in the best light, but it is truly an honest look at the emotions and questions the author has through times that are both exciting and difficult.

4 people found this helpful

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  • James Gordon
  • 2006-05-24

Sensibly Sentimental

I'm not a Renthead, although I did see the show twice and have seen the movie version as well. But I am affected by AIDS and have attended Friends In Deed meetings in New York (Rapp speaks of his association with this organization and its founder Cy O'Neal). And now, I must admit, I've fallen in "love" with Anthony Rapp. I expected a shallow but gossipy read when I purchased this book, not the beautifully written, emotion-packed memoir, narrated honestly by the author.

From its first page I was enveloped in a story that has implications for all of us. Anthony Rapp is a wonderful actor and a marvelous author. You don't have to be a musical theater afficiando or even an admirer of the arts to get swept away in this edgy and honest story. Kudos to Mr. Rapp who should write more often. He has more than one gift.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Frank Donnellan
  • 2006-05-16

Not your usual biography.

I read the book when it was first available and knew in the first chapter that this would be a great read and it was. Last week I got the audio version with Anthony reading his book (unabridged) and it was an experience I'll never forget. Just blew me away to not just hear the words read by him but to experience the all his emotions was fantastic. You truly feel the love, anger, confusion, energy; it's very powerful. Hope he writes again soon.

I will say it may not be for everyone. It can be emotionally heavy and may feel too personal at times. It really is his life offered to the reader in a way I can't remember having experienced in a book before.

8 people found this helpful

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  • United States of Geekdom
  • 2017-10-01

Surprisingly Meh...

I wanted more of the production process of the musical RENT. Did not get that. Great performance reading by Anthony Rapp though.

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  • Kenneth
  • 2009-08-24

nice story and well narrated

I really felt Anthony Rapp did a great job telling his story and bring emotion to his words. I found myself in tears several times!

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  • Caffaenated
  • 2021-03-17

Heartbreaking and beautifully done

4 1/2 Caffeinated Stars
Trigger Warnings: Abuse, Emotional Abuse, Homophobia, Cheating, Death

Though I do miss the romance package from Audible, I have found some good books through Audible Plus. I was utterly ecstatic that Without You by Anthony Rapp was included in the plus catalog. I’ve loved RENT for years and even saw the play at the Nederlander Theater and at the Buell Theater (with Anthony Rapp & Adam Pascal). I’ve always wanted to learn more about RENT’s creation, and I love Anthony Rapp, so it was a no-brainer to read the audiobook that the actor narrated.

Without You was beautifully written. The emotions were raw and heartfelt throughout the entire book. Anthony Rapp did not hold back when writing and reading this book. He was brutally honest with his story and evoked so much emotion that I full-on sobbed at times.

The story of Anthony’s time in RENT and the loss of his mother was incredibly impactful. This book is not just about RENT but about Anthony’s struggles with grief and loss. It was inspiring to see him come into himself and grow as a person. Witnessing the battle Anthony had from the losses he experienced was a bit cathartic. I lost two significant family members last year, so reading about the author’s grief helped.

I highly recommend this to anyone who loves the play & anyone who wants to read about Anthony’s life. This book was raw, emotional, and beautifully written.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2012-02-19

Exactly what the title says...

This book was well read by Rapp who really gets you in to the story with his emotion. Also the book is exactly what the title says, Rapp's experience of loss, love, and Rent. Rapp really lets you inside his mind as he deals with his own homosexuality and the loss of many great friends and family members throughout his life. There are very graphic scenes in this book that may not be for everyone, but the passion that Rapp feels is obvious throughout the reading.

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  • Lisamia & Paris
  • 2022-07-01

I needed this

Thank you Anthony, i really needed this. My struggle with grief weighs everyday. Thank you for making me realize so much

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  • Janet S Mallory
  • 2022-06-20

Terrific

If you lived thru the production of Rent, you would know about the turbulent times this musical portrays. It is a great musical in the vein of west side story. The story and struggles were real, the people are real, and it didn’t get the reviews it should.

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  • Danielle Martin
  • 2022-06-11

Poignant, Cathartic, Wonderful

I picked up this book after it was suggested by An Internet friend as the author at a comicon a couple of weeks ago. I also watched my grandmother die of cancer and a lot of those memories came flooding back as I listen to Mr. Rapp’s recount of how he experienced his mothers death. As a huge musical theater fan it was neat to hear the first person account of one of my favorite shows. A quick listen, and powerful nonetheless.