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The Anthologist


The Anthologist Cover

ISBN13: 9781416572459
ISBN10: 1416572457
Condition: Standard
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Average customer rating based on 4 comments:

DC, January 22, 2012 (view all comments by DC)
Fun, funny book about words and life. In detail. I'm reading it aloud to a friend, and it's perfect for that. Very easy to relate to a character who knows alot about poetry, language, and words but isn't so very good at writing himself - the classic knowing what one wants to write but not being able to write it. A very human story, whether or not you're interested in poetry. It does seem to me that it relates beyond "literary" subjects - everyone believes they have capacity to do great work, but at least sometimes cannot do it. Highly recommended. Great sense of humor, great fun. Unless of course you don't like words, then maybe you won't like it.
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jepeb, April 11, 2011 (view all comments by jepeb)
I don't think I will purchase this book. I am not particularly interested in the concept.
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(1 of 9 readers found this comment helpful)
Susmita Dubey, January 19, 2011 (view all comments by Susmita Dubey)
If you know very little about poetry (as I do) and even if you find it difficult to read (as I do), you will still love Nicholas Baker's short novel about a poet compiling an anthology of rhyming poems while he struggles with his professional and personal life. Baker's protagonist explains his preference for rhyme over the more modern free verse, and his views on what iambic pentameter really is, referencing poets including Whitman, Pound, Millay, and Keats, as well as less well-known ones. At the same time, he is working on a long-overdue introduction to his anthology and trying to win back his long-time girlfriend. Baker has written a very funny and erudite book about a likeable "regular" guy who happens to make his living writing poetry.
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(3 of 4 readers found this comment helpful)
Katherine Stevens, August 11, 2010 (view all comments by Katherine Stevens)
It's really only a book to read if you've gone through a poetry phase. It doesn't matter much how long of a poetry phase. A year or two should suffice. Then maybe it's four stars because it gets you in your gut. Funny and sweet and sad, and not so much of any of it like you feel you're being manipulated, so that's a nice thing. Highly readable.
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Product Details

Baker, Nicholson
Simon & Schuster
General Fiction
Literature-A to Z
Edition Description:
Trade Paperback
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
8.44 x 5.5 in 8.4 oz

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The Anthologist Used Trade Paper
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Product details 256 pages Simon & Schuster - English 9781416572459 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

The Anthologist is the one of the funniest books I read this year, and one of Baker's best in a long time. Baker creates an incredibly winning main character in Paul Chowder, a minor poet trying (and repeatedly failing) to write the introduction to an anthology of new poems. The Anthologist is gorgeously written, intelligent, witty, and surprisingly touching, as well as filled with more insight about poetry than a dozen anthologies.

"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "In Baker's lovely 10th novel, readers are introduced to Paul Chowder, a 'study in failure,' at a very dark time in his life. He has lost the two things that he values most: his girlfriend, Roz, and his ability to write. The looming introduction to an anthology of poems he owes a friend, credit card debt and frequent finger injuries aren't helping either. Chowder narrates in a professorial and often very funny stream of consciousness as he relates his woes and shares his knowledge of poetry, and though a desire to learn about verse will certainly make the novel more accessible and interesting, it isn't a prerequisite to enjoying it. Chowder's interest in poetry extends beyond meter and enjambment; alongside discussions of craft, he explores the often sordid lives of poets (Poe, Tennyson and Rothke are just some of the poets who figuratively and literally haunt Chowder). And when he isn't missing Roz or waxing on poetics, he busies himself with a slow and strangely compelling attempt at cleaning up his office. Baker pulls off an original and touching story, demonstrating his remarkable writing ability while putting it under a microscope. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "We come to see that Baker has written, here as elsewhere, a book of which he celebrates the superfluous details of life....He is an expert craftsman...[The Anthologist] is a testament to — indeed an anthology of — moments when poetry and life touch against each other....[Baker's work] is a rare example of affectionate art, of brilliant writing that manages to collect and display the odds and ends of existence in a way that makes the reader like it and him." (London)
"Review" by , "Mr. Baker...slips effortlessly into the eager, friendless voice of a man who is every bit as glamorous and dynamic as his name suggests....funny, self-deprecating...delivers unexpectedly illuminating thoughts....But the real beauty of The Anthologist lies in what Paul does not overtly say....enjoy this book's intensity. Don't break its spell."
"Review" by , "[A] novel inside a novel, a life within a life....Baker is a hybrid of past and future. His style has a meditative echo, like a man in a cave walking toward a light on the other end....On paper, in his essays and his fiction, he knows exactly where he is."
"Synopsis" by , Paul Chowder is trying to write the introduction to a new anthology of rhyming verse, but he’s having a hard time getting started. The result of his fitful struggles is The Anthologist, Nicholson Baker’s brilliantly funny and exquisite love story about poetry.

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A New York Times Notable Book, 2009

Favorite Fiction of 2009–Los Angeles Times

Best Books of 2009–The Christian Science Monitor

Best of 2009–

"A Year’s Reading" Favorites, 2009–The New Yorker

 Best Books of 2009–Seattle Times


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