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The Imperfectionists (2010)

by Tom Rachman

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3,3632172,698 (3.65)290
An "imperfect" crew of reporters and editors working for an international English language newspaper stumble toward an uncertain future as the era of print news gives way to the Internet age. The story is set against the gorgeous backdrop of Rome.
  1. 10
    Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris (GCPLreader)
  2. 00
    Ladies and Gentlemen by Adam Ross (marie-dune)
  3. 00
    Office Politics by Wilfrid Sheed (giovannigf)
    giovannigf: Office Politics reads like a direct predecessor to The Imperfectionists: a fairly realistic (and biting) satire of the machinations behind a literary magazine, described from the point of view of each of the main characters.
  4. 00
    The Song is You by Arthur Phillips (kristenn)
  5. 11
    London Transports by Maeve Binchy (bookworm12)
  6. 00
    Kissing in Manhattan by David Schickler (boo-radley)
  7. 00
    Love and Shame and Love by Peter Orner (starboard)
  8. 00
    In Other Rooms, Other Wonders by Daniyal Mueenuddin (IamAleem)
  9. 01
    44 Scotland Street by Alexander McCall Smith (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: These character-driven novels use vignettes and ensemble casts to explore multiple plots and the relationships between characters. 44 Scotland Street is both comical and upbeat, while The Imperfectionists is more nuanced, complex, and thoughtful.… (more)
  10. 01
    Amsterdam by Ian McEwan (BookshelfMonstrosity)
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» See also 290 mentions

English (204)  German (3)  Swedish (3)  Dutch (2)  Danish (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (214)
Showing 1-5 of 204 (next | show all)
The journalism crowd may find this one pretty interesting. ( )
  AldusManutius | Jul 5, 2020 |
All journalists and journalism students should read this! Deeply empathetic, sometimes funny, mostly sad in a realistic kind of way, always detailed and clever. Highly recommended! ( )
  nancyjean19 | Jun 3, 2020 |
This was great fun to read... Makes me wonder what the back stories of my office mates might be. Or better yet, what the backstories of the Dodge staff might have been! ( )
  szbuhayar | May 24, 2020 |
Gegen die wunderschöne Kulisse von Rom, Tom Rachmans schickes, lebendiges Debüt folgt dem topsy-turvy Privatleben der Reporter, Redakteure und Führungskräfte einer internationalen englischsprachigen Zeitung, wie sie kämpfen, um es zu behalten - und sich selbst - flott.

Fünfzig Jahre und viele Veränderungen sind seit der Gründung des Papiers durch einen rätselhaften Millionär aufgetreten, und jetzt, inmitten der gebeizten Teppichböden und schmuddeligen Büromöbeln, scheinen die persönlichen Dramen des Personals viel wichtiger als die täglichen Schlagzeilen. Kathleen, der kaiserliche Chefredakteur, klopft von einem Verrat in ihrer offenen Ehe; Arthur, der faule Nachrufschreiber, wird durch eine persönliche Tragödie verwandelt; Abby, der umkämpfte Finanzoffizier, entdeckt, dass ihr Job schneidet und ihr Liebesleben in einer unerwarteten Weise verflochten ist. Auf dem Feld geht ein veteraner Pariser Freiberufler zu verzweifelten Längen für seine nächste Byline, während der neue Kairo-Streicher gnadenlos von einem unverschämten Kriegskorrespondenten mit einem übergroßen Ego manipuliert wird. Und im Schatten ist der isolierte junge Verleger, der seinem Schatzhund, Schopenhauer, mehr Aufmerksamkeit widmet als dem Schicksal seiner schrulligen Zeitung.

Als die Ära der Print-News dem Internet-Zeitalter weicht und diese unvollkommene Mannschaft auf eine unsichere Zukunft stolpert, wird die reiche Geschichte des Papiers offenbart, einschließlich der überraschenden Wahrheit über die Absichten ihres Gründers.

Geisterhaft, bewegend und sehr originell, werden die Imperfektionisten Tom Rachman als eines unserer scharfsinnigsten, gesicherten literarischen Talente etablieren.
  Fredo68 | May 18, 2020 |
Reading this book, I realized I had read it before. Probably right after publication. For some reason, I hadn't added it to me gr list, and now I've nearly reread it all...... and I didn't enjoy it enough the first time, to reread it all again.
So, three stars, for the first time. About the same for this time. ( )
  stephanie_M | Apr 30, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 204 (next | show all)
The novel is alternately hilarious and heart-wrenching, and it's assembled like a Rubik's Cube. I almost feel sorry for Rachman, because a debut of this order sets the bar so high.
 
Enjoy "The Imperfectionists" for the gem that it is.
 
"The Imperfectionists" is about what happens when professionals realize that their craft no longer has meaning in the world's eyes (think of all those hardworking monk-scribes idled by Gutenberg) and that the only people who really understand them are on the same foundering ship, and that, come to think of it, they really loved that damn ship for all it made their lives hell.
 
He's both testing and tender towards his people - their loneliness and purposelessness, moments of cleaving awareness ("one day, his son will die"), capabilities for love and commitment, devotion to kids, awareness of the fading future of a faded friend. It's convincing and compassionate; amusing and affectionate. In fact, it's a bit of a jewel.
 
Anyone who has ever spent time in newspaperland will recognise The Imperfectionists' high degree of authenticity. So – you hope – will quite a few people beyond it. The citadel may be crumbling, but the righteousness of the defenders, miraculously, endures.
added by lkernagh | editThe Guardian, DJ Taylor (Apr 10, 2010)
 

» Add other authors (5 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Rachman, TomAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Apunen, Mattisecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bachman, Barbara M.Designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Biermann, PiekeÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
de Vicq de Cumptich, RobertoCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Epigraph
Dedication
For Claire and Jack.
First words
Lloyd shoves off the bedcovers and hurries to the front door in white underwear and black socks.
Quotations
If history taught us anything, Arthur muses, it is that men with mustaches must never achieve positions of power.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
Employees of an old-style English language newspaper based in Rome struggle with personal tragedies, dilemmas, and blunders while eyeing the rising tide of technology.
Haiku summary
Declining news biz
intertwined sad, fun stories
journalists' lives suck
(ReadWriteLib)

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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