Saturday, January 31, 2009

New Classics Challenge/TBR Challenge Review

Well, you know, I have company coming in 1.5 hours and I think I should just say I'm not going to finish the New Classics Challenge. Ah well. I did end up reading 4 books, 2 of which were off the scary list of doom, 1 of which fit the bill for the Chunkster Challenge and 1 of which was on my list for the TBR challenge (um, ok, so maybe I cheated because I knew it was next on the pile to read and that's why I put it on the list... but I hadn't started it yet when I made my list!)

Anyway, so here is the 4th and final New Classics Challenge book (although I am going to read Sandman really soon, because it IS already checked out from the library and everything.)

High Fidelity: A Novel Nick Hornby

I haven't read any Hornby before and I was hesitant to read this because I really liked the movie. You know how the book is always better than the movie? What if that isn't true? What if really, whatever story you have immersed yourself in first is better, because that's why you know, and deviation is what makes it worse, no matter what the original was.

That, however, is not the case. While I still like the movie, I can say that the book is better. It has more wit. Also, it takes place in London, which just seems like a better setting for it somehow.

Anyway, if you haven't seen the movie, Rob is a bit of a sadsack. He's reached his mid-30s, runs a failing record shop, he finds his friends lame, and his long-time, serious, live-in girlfriend has just left him for the guy who used to live upstairs.

Rob's not the most reliable narrator in that he's a very authentic voice and so believable. He never understood why Laura liked him in the first place, because he has some depression and self-esteem issues, so the reader isn't entirely sure either. But, Hornby is an author that treats the modern male well. He explores issues of masculinity and relationships from the male point of view, while not turning me off in the same way that Brent Easton Ellis, and Chuck Palahniuk all seem to do with male protagonists that I hope I never actually meet (which is an opinion based solely on reading the jacket copy of their novels and seeing some movies based on them--not a great way to form an opinion of an authors work, I know, but I really don't have much desire to read any of their stuff. I really don't read enough stuff about guys. I do really read girly books. Hmmmm.)

Anyway, Rob is funny, the story is good, and all the music snobbery is great--make sure you have some most excellent music playing while you read.

I now want to go read everything Hornby has ever written.


Ana S. said...

YES! Do read everything Nick Hornby has ever written :D I plan on doing the same.

joanna said...

Don't worry, I didn't finish either and I hosted it! :-)