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This title in other editions

The Financial Lives of the Poets (P.S.)

by

The Financial Lives of the Poets (P.S.) Cover

ISBN13: 9780061916052
ISBN10: 0061916056
All Product Details

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Meet Matt Prior. He's about to lose his job, his wife, his house, maybe his mind. Unless . . .

In the winning and utterly original novels Citizen Vince and The Zero, Jess Walter ("a ridiculously talented writer", New York Times) painted an America all his own: a land of real, flawed, and deeply human characters coping with the anxieties of their times. Now, in his warmest, funniest, and best novel yet, Walter offers a story as real as our own lives: a tale of overstretched accounts, misbegotten schemes, and domestic dreams deferred.

A few years ago, small-time finance journalist Matthew Prior quit his day job to gamble everything on a quixotic notion: a Web site devoted to financial journalism in the form of blank verse. When his big idea — and his wife's eBay resale business — ends with a whimper (and a garage full of unwanted figurines), they borrow and borrow, whistling past the graveyard of their uncertain dreams. One morning Matt wakes up to find himself jobless, hobbled with debt, spying on his wife's online flirtation, and six days away from losing his home. Is this really how things were supposed to end up for me, he wonders: staying up all night worried, driving to 7-Eleven in the middle of the night to get milk for his boys, and falling in with two local degenerates after they offer him a hit of high-grade marijuana?

Or, he thinks, could this be the solution to all my problems?

Following Matt in his week-long quest to save his marriage, his sanity, and his dreams, The Financial Lives of the Poets is a hysterical, heartfelt novel about how we can reach the edge of ruin — and how we can begin to make our way back.

Review:

"When it comes to explaining to me my own too often baffling nation, there's no one writing today whom I trust as completely as Jess Walter. His intelligence and sympathy and great wit inform every page — indeed every sentence — of his terrific new novel, The Financial Lives of the Poets. " Nick Hornby, Parade

Review:

"Cynical yet warm, this novel about a financial reporter (with a failing website written entirely in blank verse) is a delight." Dallas Morning News

Review:

"America's first Great Recession novel." Christian Science Monitor

Review:

"Hilarious and timely...Walter grounds the story with moments of genuine feeling...bitter, funny and accurate...Jess Walter's buoyant voice is a fresh pleasure." The New Yorker

Review:

"A real find....the ultimate something-for-everyone-don't-skip-must-read." Sam Lipsyte, author of Home Land and Venus Drive

Review:

"One of the best American writers working today....It's a testament to this author's genius that I could not stop laughing even as he drives home some necessary truths. Walter has written a profound, and profoundly funny, book; this may well be the classic novel of our post-boom era." Whitney Terrell, author of The King of Kings County and The Huntsman

Review:

"Jess Walter"s smart and big-hearted take on our bleak national moment is a welcome relief. The Financial Lives of the Poets is a rollicking fiction and an affecting family portrait, as well as a mordantly funny cautionary tale." Ben Fountain, author of Brief Encounters with Che Guevara

Review:

"Would be so sad if it weren't so funny, and so funny if it weren't so sad....Compassionate, witty and drawn from today's heartless world, it's a terrific book." Arizona Republic

Review:

"In this cautionary tale of fiscal follies and collapse Walter delivers a comic and gut-wrenching fable for these impecunious times." Kansas City Star

Review:

"Darkly funny, surprisingly tender...witheringly dead-on." Los Angeles Times

Review:

"Walter's The Financial Lives of the Poets is gasp out loud funny. It's also sufficiently true to life that you're grateful it's not your life. Middle-class mayhem is just the best, at least in Walter's hands." New York Daily News

Review:

"[A] superb farce." Maureen Corrigan, NPR's Fresh Air

Review:

"National Book Award-finalist Walter does for the nation's bleak financial landscape what he did for 9-11 in The Zero: whip-smart satire with heart." Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Review:

"Matt Prior...is an Everyman for our parlous times." Seattle Times

Review:

"Jess Walter's The Financial Lives of the Poets is a comic, graceful parable of marriage and money troubles in which a well-meaning family man makes decisions that are seriously stupid — and entertaining and American." Sarah Vowell, author of Assassination Vacation and The Wordy Shipmates

Review:

"A comic masterpiece...packed [with] life and wry truth." Jeffrey Burke, Bloomberg News

Review:

"The funniest way-we-live-now book of the year." Time magazine

Review:

"A deliciously antic tale of an American dream gone very sour...part noir gumshoe, part average Joe, [Matt Prior] is a sharp, wide-eyed, soulful observer, with a keen eye for the layers of bureaucracy and doublespeak." Washington Post

Review:

"Jess Walter is a brilliant writer, one of the freshest new voices in American literature." Dallas Morning News

Synopsis:

What happens when small-time reporter Matthew Prior quits his job to gamble everything on a quixotic notion: a Web site devoted to financial journalism in the form of blank verse? Before long, he wakes up to find himself jobless, hobbled with debt, spying on his wife's online flirtation, and six days away from losing his home... Until, one night on a desperate two a.m. run to 7-Eleven, he falls in with some local stoners, and they end up hatching the biggest — and most misbegotten — plan yet.

About the Author

Jess Walter is the author of The Zero (a finalist for the National Book Award), Citizen Vince (a winner of the Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Novel), Land of the Blind, Ruby Ridge, and Over Tumbled Graves (a New York Times Notable Book of the Year). He lives in Spokane, Washington, with his family.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 3 comments:

Heidi Utz, January 1, 2013 (view all comments by Heidi Utz)
This book is really the story of our uneasy times, something that should be easily related to by millions of Americans who have lost homes, jobs, spouses, and career paths over the last 5 years. Jess Walter is a hell of a writer. He portrays an endearing couple who are trying, at middle age, to figure out the landscape of this brave new world, where catastrophe looms much closer than it did just a decade ago, and even a small mistake can have disastrous consequences. Despite the gravity of the situation, the author's light touch makes it engaging and even compelling via his bone-dry humor, wryly drawn characters, and artful sentence pacing. I found myself laughing pretty much continuously throughout. Former journalists will especially relate to the protagonist's situation. Very much looking forward to reading Beautiful Ruins after thoroughly enjoying this one.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)
Paul Lindholdt, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by Paul Lindholdt)
Walking a fine line between humor and dire reporting, this book excavates the ways our follies and foibles have deepened the Great Recession brought on by renegade bankers and brokers.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
scratch, August 12, 2010 (view all comments by scratch)
A cautionary tale of sorts about a man whose life is about to fall to pieces, thanks in part to our crumbling economy, the decline of print media, and the ability of Facebook and text messaging to greatly streamline the process of adultery. Plus, there's marijuana. Highly recommended for fans of David Gates, Richard Russo, and Richard Ford. Jess Walter's previous novels were very good, but this is his clear best to date.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(5 of 9 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 3 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780061916052
Author:
Walter, Jess
Publisher:
Harper Perennial
Author:
Cornwell, Bernard
Author:
Lindsey, Johanna
Subject:
General
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Thrillers
Subject:
Romance - Historical
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Edition Description:
Trade PB
Series:
P.S.
Publication Date:
20100931
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
7.84x5.28x.77 in. .54 lbs.

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Reference » Writing » General

The Financial Lives of the Poets (P.S.) New Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$14.99 In Stock
Product details 320 pages Harper Perennial - English 9780061916052 Reviews:
"Review" by , "When it comes to explaining to me my own too often baffling nation, there's no one writing today whom I trust as completely as Jess Walter. His intelligence and sympathy and great wit inform every page — indeed every sentence — of his terrific new novel, The Financial Lives of the Poets. "
"Review" by , "Cynical yet warm, this novel about a financial reporter (with a failing website written entirely in blank verse) is a delight."
"Review" by , "America's first Great Recession novel."
"Review" by , "Hilarious and timely...Walter grounds the story with moments of genuine feeling...bitter, funny and accurate...Jess Walter's buoyant voice is a fresh pleasure."
"Review" by , "A real find....the ultimate something-for-everyone-don't-skip-must-read."
"Review" by , "One of the best American writers working today....It's a testament to this author's genius that I could not stop laughing even as he drives home some necessary truths. Walter has written a profound, and profoundly funny, book; this may well be the classic novel of our post-boom era."
"Review" by , "Jess Walter"s smart and big-hearted take on our bleak national moment is a welcome relief. The Financial Lives of the Poets is a rollicking fiction and an affecting family portrait, as well as a mordantly funny cautionary tale."
"Review" by , "Would be so sad if it weren't so funny, and so funny if it weren't so sad....Compassionate, witty and drawn from today's heartless world, it's a terrific book."
"Review" by , "In this cautionary tale of fiscal follies and collapse Walter delivers a comic and gut-wrenching fable for these impecunious times."
"Review" by , "Darkly funny, surprisingly tender...witheringly dead-on."
"Review" by , "Walter's The Financial Lives of the Poets is gasp out loud funny. It's also sufficiently true to life that you're grateful it's not your life. Middle-class mayhem is just the best, at least in Walter's hands."
"Review" by , "[A] superb farce."
"Review" by , "National Book Award-finalist Walter does for the nation's bleak financial landscape what he did for 9-11 in The Zero: whip-smart satire with heart."
"Review" by , "Matt Prior...is an Everyman for our parlous times."
"Review" by , "Jess Walter's The Financial Lives of the Poets is a comic, graceful parable of marriage and money troubles in which a well-meaning family man makes decisions that are seriously stupid — and entertaining and American."
"Review" by , "A comic masterpiece...packed [with] life and wry truth."
"Review" by , "The funniest way-we-live-now book of the year."
"Review" by , "A deliciously antic tale of an American dream gone very sour...part noir gumshoe, part average Joe, [Matt Prior] is a sharp, wide-eyed, soulful observer, with a keen eye for the layers of bureaucracy and doublespeak."
"Review" by , "Jess Walter is a brilliant writer, one of the freshest new voices in American literature."
"Synopsis" by , What happens when small-time reporter Matthew Prior quits his job to gamble everything on a quixotic notion: a Web site devoted to financial journalism in the form of blank verse? Before long, he wakes up to find himself jobless, hobbled with debt, spying on his wife's online flirtation, and six days away from losing his home... Until, one night on a desperate two a.m. run to 7-Eleven, he falls in with some local stoners, and they end up hatching the biggest — and most misbegotten — plan yet.
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