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Alternadad

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Alternadad Cover

ISBN13: 9780375423628
ISBN10: 0375423621
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A few years ago, Neal Pollack was probably the least likely father you've ever met: a pop-culture-obsessed writer and self-styled party guy known mostly for outrageous literary antics. In typical fashion, he responded to the birth of his son by forming a mediocre rock band and taking it on tour. Now, in Alternadad, he tells the hilarious and poignant story of how he learned to be a father to his son, Elijah, after the failure of his short-lived rock 'n' roll dreams.

Pollack and his wife, Regina, were determined to raise their son without growing up too much themselves. They welcomed the responsibility but were worried that they'd become uptight and out of touch. Through the ups and downs of the first years of their son's life their determination is put to the test, and they find themselves changing in ways they never expected, particularly after Elijah develops a biting problem in preschool.

Alternadad is a refreshingly honest book about the wonders, terrors, and idiocies of parenting today. From enrolling his son in an absurd corporate gymnastics class to a disastrous visit to a rock festival to uncomfortable encounters with other parents whom he'd ordinarily avoid, Pollack candidly explores the everyday struggles and the long-term compromises that come with parenthood.

Mixing ironic skepticism with an appreciation for the absurdities of everyday life, Alternadad is a portrait of a new version of the American family: responsible if unorthodox parents raising kids who know the difference between the Ramones and the Sex Pistols. Wildly funny, surprising, and often moving, it just might be the parenting bible for a new generation of mothers and fathers.

Review:

"His novel Never Mind the Pollacks, a hilarious treat, used a fictional 'Neal Pollack' to parody the excesses and idiocy of current pop culture. But his self-awareness becomes more self-indulgent (though still witty) in this straightforward memoir of life with his artist wife, the couple's decision a few years ago to have a baby and the attendant strains that his son, Elijah, wreaks on their hipster lifestyle. Pollack details the kind of problems that can be found in almost every memoir on child-rearing, from how to clean up baby poop to figuring out how best to be a 'Dad' while being a friend. But he never really defines what it is that makes his parenting so alternative other than that he wants to be a parent and still get high and stay out late. Nevertheless, Pollack hasn't lost his flair for tongue-in-cheek commentary ('I'd begun exerting cultural control over my son; I was going to shape his mind until he was exactly like me')." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"His novel Never Mind the Pollacks, a hilarious treat, used a fictional 'Neal Pollack' to parody the excesses and idiocy of current pop culture. But his self-awareness becomes more self-indulgent (though still witty) in this straightforward memoir of life with his artist wife, the couple's decision a few years ago to have a baby and the attendant strains that his son, Elijah, wreaks on their hipster lifestyle. Pollack details the kind of problems that can be found in almost every memoir on child-rearing, from how to clean up baby poop to figuring out how best to be a 'Dad' while being a friend. But he never really defines what it is that makes his parenting so alternative other than that he wants to be a parent and still get high and stay out late. Nevertheless, Pollack hasn't lost his flair for tongue-in-cheek commentary ('I'd begun exerting cultural control over my son; I was going to shape his mind until he was exactly like me')." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"I wish I were Neal Pollack's brother. Then I'd have some automatic interest in hearing an exhaustive narrative of how he met his wife. I'd want to know all the quaint and comic details of how the couple tried to raise their toddler son to be as cool as his sometimes-rocker dad.

I'm not. I don't.

'Alternadad' is the new memoir in which Pollack, a comic essayist and Olympian... Washington Post Book Review (read the entire Washington Post review)

Review:

"The hilarious and emotional all-family brouhaha that erupts over the topic of circumcision will resonate with many, as will Pollack's description of the conflicted feelings all parents have at one time or another." New York Times

Review:

"Alternadad gives comfort, with a bonus of lots of laughs, to every parent who is just doing the best he can." Cleveland Plain Dealer

Review:

"Alternadad is peppered with the scary-funny one-liners we've come to expect from the intriguing American crank Neal Pollack. But it's also a surprisingly romantic tale of love and hope and even civic-minded warmth, set amidst the dingier blocks of Chicago and Austin and the trash-can fires of Philadelphia." Sarah Vowell, author of Assassination Vacation

Review:

"Elijah is now four, Dad is 36 and they are both growing up nicely. God job, Neal! Someday, Elijah will especially enjoy this history, and meanwhile, we can look forward to his Bar Mitzvah. Foolproof material, illustrated with snapshots proving Elijah's cuteness." Kirkus Reviews

Synopsis:

Mixing ironic skepticism with an appreciation for the absurdities of everyday life, Pollack offers a hilarious true story of two people trying to raise a child without growing up themselves. "Alternadad" is a portrait of a new version of the American family: responsible if unorthodox parents raising kids who know the difference between the Ramones and the Sex Pistols.

About the Author

Neal Pollack is the author of several acclaimed books of satirical fiction, including The Neal Pollack Anthology of American Literature and the novel Never Mind the Pollacks. A contributor to many magazines, newspapers, and Web sites, he also keeps a semidaily blog at www.nealpollack.com. He lives in Los Angeles with his family.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 6 comments:

Dadasaurus, January 30, 2007 (view all comments by Dadasaurus)
I forgot to add that Pollack takes cheap shots in the book at people who are different. It's really foul that someone who pretends to be hip and bohemian is actually so judgmental and intolerant.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(10 of 19 readers found this comment helpful)
Dadasaurus, January 30, 2007 (view all comments by Dadasaurus)
This book is dreck and dross. I can't believe that people like this have kids. I read this because a friend told me that Pollack seemed cool. I don't know if I'll be accepting those suggestions anymore. This guy is a navel-gazing attention ho who's got nothing to say. Profoundly disappointing.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(8 of 14 readers found this comment helpful)
j.e.m., January 30, 2007 (view all comments by j.e.m.)
As I languish in my own hip and fertile child-bearing years, curiosity sneaks up on me. What is this parenting situation that more and more of my friends are entering? Pollack's tale of his journey from urban bohemian to devoted father explains just that.

What I'd previously read of Pollock's work didn't prepare me for the sweet honesty and overall frankness of Alternadad. The quite deliberate, and often tongue-in-cheek, "alternative" culture and lifestyle references do nothing but enhance a story told in this era of hyperlinks and information saturation. It's a very up-to-the-minute report on the perception of young parenting, and how this specific generation will build upon what every previous generation has learned. Pollock offers up his own experiences for the common good, but in such an amusing way you can't help but walk away with a different perspective.
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(8 of 13 readers found this comment helpful)
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780375423628
Author:
Pollack, Neal
Publisher:
Pantheon
Subject:
Parenting
Subject:
Family
Subject:
Parental Memoirs
Subject:
Fathers and sons
Subject:
Personal Memoirs
Subject:
Fathers and sons -- United States.
Subject:
Child rearing -- United States.
Copyright:
Publication Date:
20070109
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
6 BandW PHOTOGRAPHS
Pages:
304
Dimensions:
9.48x6.32x1.20 in. 1.36 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Biography » General
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Health and Self-Help » Child Care and Parenting » Infancy and Toddlerhood

Alternadad Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$7.46 In Stock
Product details 304 pages Pantheon Books - English 9780375423628 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "His novel Never Mind the Pollacks, a hilarious treat, used a fictional 'Neal Pollack' to parody the excesses and idiocy of current pop culture. But his self-awareness becomes more self-indulgent (though still witty) in this straightforward memoir of life with his artist wife, the couple's decision a few years ago to have a baby and the attendant strains that his son, Elijah, wreaks on their hipster lifestyle. Pollack details the kind of problems that can be found in almost every memoir on child-rearing, from how to clean up baby poop to figuring out how best to be a 'Dad' while being a friend. But he never really defines what it is that makes his parenting so alternative other than that he wants to be a parent and still get high and stay out late. Nevertheless, Pollack hasn't lost his flair for tongue-in-cheek commentary ('I'd begun exerting cultural control over my son; I was going to shape his mind until he was exactly like me')." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "His novel Never Mind the Pollacks, a hilarious treat, used a fictional 'Neal Pollack' to parody the excesses and idiocy of current pop culture. But his self-awareness becomes more self-indulgent (though still witty) in this straightforward memoir of life with his artist wife, the couple's decision a few years ago to have a baby and the attendant strains that his son, Elijah, wreaks on their hipster lifestyle. Pollack details the kind of problems that can be found in almost every memoir on child-rearing, from how to clean up baby poop to figuring out how best to be a 'Dad' while being a friend. But he never really defines what it is that makes his parenting so alternative other than that he wants to be a parent and still get high and stay out late. Nevertheless, Pollack hasn't lost his flair for tongue-in-cheek commentary ('I'd begun exerting cultural control over my son; I was going to shape his mind until he was exactly like me')." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "The hilarious and emotional all-family brouhaha that erupts over the topic of circumcision will resonate with many, as will Pollack's description of the conflicted feelings all parents have at one time or another."
"Review" by , "Alternadad gives comfort, with a bonus of lots of laughs, to every parent who is just doing the best he can."
"Review" by , "Alternadad is peppered with the scary-funny one-liners we've come to expect from the intriguing American crank Neal Pollack. But it's also a surprisingly romantic tale of love and hope and even civic-minded warmth, set amidst the dingier blocks of Chicago and Austin and the trash-can fires of Philadelphia."
"Review" by , "Elijah is now four, Dad is 36 and they are both growing up nicely. God job, Neal! Someday, Elijah will especially enjoy this history, and meanwhile, we can look forward to his Bar Mitzvah. Foolproof material, illustrated with snapshots proving Elijah's cuteness."
"Synopsis" by , Mixing ironic skepticism with an appreciation for the absurdities of everyday life, Pollack offers a hilarious true story of two people trying to raise a child without growing up themselves. "Alternadad" is a portrait of a new version of the American family: responsible if unorthodox parents raising kids who know the difference between the Ramones and the Sex Pistols.

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