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High Fidelity (1995)

by Nick Hornby

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
13,685180311 (3.92)236
Rob is a pop music junkie who runs his own semi-failing record store. His girlfriend, Laura, has just left him for the guy upstairs, and Rob is both miserable and relieved. After all, could he have spent his life with someone who has a bad record collection? Rob seeks refuge in the company of the offbeat clerks at his store, who endlessly review 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 whose 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 (awful as it sounds) that life as an episode of thirtysomething, with all the kids and marriages and barbecues and k.d. lang CD's that this implies, might not be so bad.… (more)
Recently added byVillage-at-MHB, sjatkinson60, private library, Arina42, jamisym, Pages_Aplenty, ejmw, Hunted315
  1. 50
    About a Boy by Nick Hornby (Maurizio70)
  2. 10
    The Best a Man Can Get by John O'Farrell (alzo)
  3. 10
    Everything Changes by Jonathan Tropper (SimoneA)
    SimoneA: Both funny and enjoyable books about a young guy rethinking his life.
  4. 10
    Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn (lampbane)
    lampbane: Another story where music and love are interconnected.
  5. 00
    The Song is You by Arthur Phillips (elenchus)
    elenchus: Similar taste in music by the protagonists, but a very different novel. Both very good.
  6. 00
    Vinyl Junkies: Adventures in Record Collecting by Brett Milano (Sr_Moreno)
  7. 00
    Suzy, Led Zeppelin, and Me by Martin Millar (AsYouKnow_Bob)
  8. 01
    Hairstyles of the Damned by Joe Meno (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: Both are introspective and character-based novels about a witty and music-obsessed young man suffering from relationship problems. Readers who enjoy savvy, music-literate fiction will enjoy the hip, colloquial prose and rich detail concerning popular music.… (more)
  9. 01
    YOU comma Idiot by Doug Harris (ShelfMonkey)
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» See also 236 mentions

English (167)  Spanish (5)  Italian (3)  Norwegian (2)  German (2)  Danish (1)  All languages (180)
Showing 1-5 of 167 (next | show all)
Rob is just.. such an unlikeable character, and not in a ‘love to hate’ kind of way. Laura deserves better. ( )
  crimsonraider | Apr 1, 2021 |
SUPERB book, could have been written about my life. Nick Hornby has a great insight into how the male mind works. Makes me want to open a record shop. ( )
  DavidCraddock | Mar 20, 2021 |
Not one of Hornby's finest books, but worth a read. ( )
  Timwindram | Feb 28, 2021 |
Questo, per me, è uno di quei libri benedetti che appaiono nella tua vita proprio nel momento in cui ne avevi bisogno.Insomma, non è che stessi vivendo chissà quale crisi pofonda, si trattava di uno di quegli attimi di smarrimento sentimental-esistenziale molto comune nella vita di una persona, ma questo libro mi sorprese...conteneva tutto ciò che avevo da sapere in quel momento, per di più esposto con lucidità e ironia. Ho imparato molto di più da Alta Fedeltà che da decine di conversazioni con decine di amici (in teoria) intelligentissimi, espertissimi e scaltrissimi. Non scherzo quando dico che la mia attuale visione del mondo, delle relazioni interpersonali e della mia vita non può prescindere da ciò che imparai da questo libro.
PS. se avete amici intelligentissimi, espertissimi e scaltrissimi, teneteveli stretti e non sostituiteli con libri...mi raccomando ;-))
( )
  JoeProtagoras | Jan 28, 2021 |
"Only people of a certain disposition are frightened of being alone for the rest of their lives at twenty-six; we were of that disposition. Everything seemed much later than it was" (30).

I've read this book before, but rereading it now makes a lot of sense. So many novels about break-ups are written in the chick-lit genre or from the female perspective; this is the narrative of a man who seems firmly stuck in the emerging adulthood stage as he muses over his most recent and previous relationship fiascoes. It is by turns funny, pathetic, depressing, and insightful.

"You know the worst thing about being rejected? The lack of control. If I could only control the when and how of being dumped by somebody, then it wouldn't seem as bad. But then, of course, it wouldn't be rejection, would it?" (110) ( )
  resoundingjoy | Jan 1, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 167 (next | show all)
Happily, Hornby does not rely on pop-cultural allusion to limn his characters' inner lives, but uses it instead to create a rich, wry backdrop for them... Hornby is as fine an analyst as he is a funny man, and his book is a true original.
added by Shortride | editTime, Gina Bellafante (Oct 9, 1995)
 
Mr. Hornby captures the loneliness and childishness of adult life with such precision and wit that you'll find yourself nodding and smiling.
added by Shortride | editThe New York Times Book Review, Mark Jolly (Sep 3, 1995)
 
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Epigraph
Dedication
For Virginia
First words
My desert-island, all-time, top five most memorable split-ups, in chronological order:
1) Alison Ashworth
2) Penny Hardwick
3) Jackie Allen
4) Charlie Nicholson
5) Sarah Kendrew.
Quotations
People worry about kids playing with guns, and teenagers watching violent videos; we are scared that some sort of culture of violence will take them over. Nobody worries about kids listening to thousands—literally thousands—of songs about broken hearts and rejection and misery and loss. The unhappiest people I know, romantically speaking, are the ones who like pop music the most.
"Wenn man sich überlegt, was beim Mann alles schiefgehen kann! Da gibt es das tut-sich-gar-nichts-Problem, das Tut-sich-zu-viel-zu-schnell-Problem, das Kläglicher-Hänger-nach-vielversprechendem-Start-Problem, das Größe-spielt-keine-Rolle-außer-bei-mir-Problem, das Es-ihr-nicht-besorgen-Problem ... und worum haben sich Frauen zu sorgen? Das bißchen Zellulitis? Willkommen im club. Ein kleines Wie-war-ich-wohl? Dito.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
This is the book; do not combine with the film.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Rob is a pop music junkie who runs his own semi-failing record store. His girlfriend, Laura, has just left him for the guy upstairs, and Rob is both miserable and relieved. After all, could he have spent his life with someone who has a bad record collection? Rob seeks refuge in the company of the offbeat clerks at his store, who endlessly review 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 whose 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 (awful as it sounds) that life as an episode of thirtysomething, with all the kids and marriages and barbecues and k.d. lang CD's that this implies, might not be so bad.

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Book description
Recently dumped by his wealthy girlfriend, record store owner Rob Fleming finds himself in financial trouble and sets out on a pilgrimage to ask his former girlfriends where their relationships went wrong and to learn where his life went off track.
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Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0140293469, 0141037350

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