Finished! Without You: A memoir of love, loss, and the musical Rent

As I mentioned before, I am a huge Rent fan. I’ve never seen the Broadway show, but I have the original Broadway soundtrack memorized and love the movie. So when I saw someone commenting on reading Without You I had to read it.

At first there’s mainly talk about Rent as Anthony’s one of the original cast members from the workshop production before it went on broadway. It was great to read about those early days of the show and how much changed. One of the roughest parts to get through was Jonathan Larson’s death. Jonathan Larson was the creative genius behind Rent. He died the night before their off-broadway opening night of an aortic aneurysm. He was young and talented and full of life. It was a very emotional section.

I hoped that it was the most emotional part of the book, I was wrong. Through most of the book Anthony’s mother fights a long, and, in the end, losing battle with cancer. In the early days of Rent she relapses from her remission and her deterioration is a major part of the book.
When the cancer won the battle, I was so glad I was at home. Up until then I was reading it in the car and at work, fighting back the tears. I could just let them fall as I read about how he got through it and dealt with the grief. If you read this book, have a box of tissues close at hand!

This is a great book for anyone to read. Although, if you don’t like Rent, I wouldn’t pick it up as it is a huge part of his life. He’s been a part of the show in every stage it’s been through. I don’t think I’ll ever listen to or watch it the same way again.

Winter Book Challenge: Read two books set on different sides of the country or the world (1st book)


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