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Synopses & Reviews
High Fidelity is the story of Rob, a pop music junkie who runs his own semi-failing record store. His girlfriend Laura has just left him for Ian from the flat upstairs. Rob is both miserable and relieved. After all, could he have spent his life with someone who has a bad record collection? This narrowly misses his list of all-time top five most memorable split-ups. Rob seeks refuge in the company of Barry and Dick, the offbeat clerks at his store. They speak the masculine language of lists, endlessly reviewing their top five films (Reservoir Dogs...); top five Elvis Costello songs ("Alison"...); top five episodes of Cheers (the one where Woody sang his stupid song to Kelly...). Rob tries dating a singer called Marie (a post-Partridge Family, pre-L.A. Law Susan Dey), who once sold a song to Nanci Griffith. Her rendition of "Baby, I Love Your Way" makes him cry. But maybe it's just that he's always wanted to sleep with someone who has a record contract. Then he sees Laura again. And Rob begins to think (as awful as it sounds) that life as an episode of thirtysomething, with all the kids and marriages and jobs and barbecues and k.d. lang CDs that this implies, might not be so bad.
"It is rare that a book so hilarious is also so sharp about sex and manliness, memory and music." The New Yorker
"High Fidelity is about love, and about the ways in which music (and film, books, and art) affect our experiences of real-life love....Although [it] is a trip through territory that in real life is mundane, depressing, and trite...the novel is anything but." Molly Gould, San Francisco Review of Books
"[I]t's [Hornby's] literate, painfully honest riffs on romantic humiliation and heartbreak that make the book so special. A rare, touching glimpse of the masculine view of affairs of the heart." Joanne Wilkinson, Booklist
"Mr. Hornby captures the loneliness and childishness of adult life with such precision...that you'll find yourself nodding and smiling....High Fidelity fills you with the same sensation you get from hearing a debut record album that has more charm and verve than anything you can recall." Mark Jolly, The New York Times Book Review
About the Author
Nick Hornby is the author of the bestselling novels High Fidelity and About a Boy, as well as the memoir Fever Pitch. He is also the editor of the short story collection Speaking with the Angel. In 1999, he was the recipient of the American Academy of Arts and Letters E. M. Forster Award. He lives in north London.
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