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The Mezzanineby Nicholson Baker
The Mezzanine was the first work I read that questioned some pre-packaged notions I'd digested about the soullessness of corporate culture. Well, I'm still wary of all those fluorescent lights and motivational speeches, but Baker can make drinking-straw hinges seem profound.
This fiction/meditation, whose narrative spans the length of time it takes the young protagonist to ride an escalator to the mezzanine of his office complex, proves once and for all that one can elaborate to near-infinity on absolutely any topic — and if one is brilliant, like Nicholson Baker, the result can be hilarious and meaningful. Most of the book is embedded in footnotes, a gimmick which really works for its sprawling (and charmingly neurotic) voice. A classic.
Synopses & Reviews
Readers follow the journey of our hero up the escalator and learn why straws don't sink in milk cartons; whether the hot air blowers in bathrooms are really more sanitary than towels; the physics of shoelaces; and how the most trivial of objects can lead to the deepest revelations of the human heart.
About the Author
Nicholson Baker has published five novels — The Mezzanine, Room Temperature, Vox, The Fermata, and The Everlasting Story of Nory — and two works of nonfiction, U and I and The Size of Thoughts. He lives with his wife and two children in Maine.
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