Something to Live For (Paperback)
June 2019 Indie Next List
“Richard Roper’s debut is utterly delightful. I was spellbound from the very first page. Andrew’s job is a sensitive one: when someone dies at home alone, he is called to literally dig through personal effects — scraps of paper or old holiday cards — and determine if there are any next of kin. Andrew’s daily experience with the dearly departed, combined with his model train obsession, dysfunctional office mates, and an estranged sister, result in a compelling read. Funny, smart, and sad, Roper’s How Not to Die Alone is just wonderful.”
— Rachel Watkins, Avid Bookshop, Athens, GA
Previously published as How Not to Die Alone
Smart, darkly funny, and life-affirming, for fans of Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine, Something to Live For is the bighearted debut novel we all need, a story about love, loneliness, and the importance of taking a chance when we feel we have the most to lose.
"Off-beat and winning...Gives resiliency and the triumph of the human spirit a good name." --The Wall Street Journal
All Andrew wants is to be normal. That's why his coworkers believe he has the perfect wife and two children waiting at home for him after a long day. But the truth is, his life isn't exactly as people think . . . and his little white lie is about to catch up with him. Because in all of Andrew's efforts to fit in, he's forgotten one important thing: how to really live. And maybe, it's finally time for him to start.
"Roper illuminates Andrew's interior life to reveal not what an odd duck he is, but what odd ducks we all are." --The New York Times Book Review
About the Author
Richard Roper is a nonfiction editor at Headline in the UK, where he works with authors such as James Acaster, Joel Dommett, Andrew O'Neill, and Frank Turner. Something to Live For is inspired by an article he read about people whose job it is to follow up after people die alone. It is his debut novel.
“Just the kind of book I wanted to read in these times. Charming, empathetic, witty, emotional, and hopeful, Roper’s cast of quirky, vulnerable characters make for a truly warm and affecting debut.”
—J. Ryan Stradal, author of Kitchens of the Great Midwest
“[A] winning debut novel....Roper illuminates Andrew’s interior life to reveal not what an odd duck he is, but what odd ducks we all are.”
—New York Times Book Review
“Wryly funny and quirkily charming—perfect for fans of A Man Called Ove and Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine.”
—Eleanor Brown, author of The Weird Sisters
"Richard Roper uplifts the human spirit and shows us how to embrace life and hope in his wickedly witty debut.”
—Phaedra Patrick, author of The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper
“[An] off-beat and winning debut....How Not to Die Alone earns its pathos. Even more to its credit, it gives resiliency and the triumph of the human spirit a good name.”
—Wall Street Journal
“[A] charming debut [and] enjoyable read, How Not to Die Alone tackles a painful subject with goodhearted characters it’s easy to root for.”
“The pleasure in Roper’s winning, good-hearted tale is seeing this lonely sad sack cautiously rejoin the world.”
“Roper’s delightful debut is as funny as it is touching....This story of a neurotic, tenderhearted man struggling to learn how not to be alone is irresistible.”
"Simultaneously heartwarming and heartbreaking, Roper’s endearing debut novel is a wonderful exploration of loneliness and the universal desire for connection. Darkly funny and uplifting, How Not to Die Alone will leave you wanting to seize the day as you cheer the protagonist on."
—Bianca Marais, author of Hum If You Don't Know the Words
“Quirky and heartfelt....Andrew's past traumas are revealed gradually, and the reasons behind his isolation are heartbreaking and poignant. A moving and funny look at grief, hope, and the power of human connections.”
“Funny, moving and thought-provoking—I loved this.”
—Clare Mackintosh, author of After the End
“A lively blend of humor and earnest emotion....As Andrew slowly comes to grips with being his true self, without pretense, readers will root for him to find liberation and love. A wry, humorous story.”
“Tragic, sweet, and hopeful....This novel will appeal to fans of Gail Honeyman’s Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine.”