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The Polysyllabic Spree (2006)

by Nick Hornby

Series: Believer Columns (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,105697,514 (3.72)126
- Selections from the monthly Believer Magazine column by this best selling author - Hornby's "diary of an avid reader"In his monthly column "Stuff I've Been Reading," Hornby lists the books he's purchased that month, and briefly discusses the books he's actually read.NIck Hornby's Polysyllabic Spree Includes selected passages from the novels, biographies, collections of poetry, and comics discussed in the column.… (more)
  1. 20
    The Library at Night by Alberto Manguel (kristenn)
  2. 10
    The Year of Reading Dangerously: How Fifty Great Books (and Two Not-So-Great Ones) Saved My Life by Andy Miller (nessreader)
    nessreader: Both reader's diaries of what and why they read over about a year. Both readers are middleclass english boys; both are engaging commentators even about the books you'll never want to read yourself. Both reject some Canonical Novels, then say why.
  3. 10
    What Makes This Book So Great by Jo Walton (sturlington)
    sturlington: Both are fun and inspiring books by people who love to read for people who love to read.
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» See also 126 mentions

English (67)  Piratical (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (69)
Showing 1-5 of 67 (next | show all)
When I got home from work on Friday I realized that I had left my current book on my desk at work. There were several minutes of panicking - a whole weekend and me without my book! - which culminated in Nick buying a Kindle copy of the damn thing so that I would RELAX. But a Kindle copy isn't MY copy, and so I made life worth living again by remembering that I had an unread copy of "The Polysyllabic Spree", which is just the right length for a weekend. It turns out that it's also fun and witty, always great qualities to find in your weekend book. I added 3 books to my Goodreads to-read list based solely on his reviews in "The Polysyllabic Spree", so in the near future we'll see how much my taste and Nick Hornby's align. ( )
  blueskygreentrees | Jul 30, 2023 |
Una carrellata dei libri acquistati e letti dal celebre romanziere inglese.

Scorrevole, snello, non molto fruibile dai lettori non anglofoni dal momento che molti libri nominati non sono pubblicati in Italia.

Gli spunti per ulteriori letture comunque non mancano.

---
Precedente: Di scuola si muore di Giovanni Pacchiano, ed. Feltrinelli (ISBN-13 9788807815119)
Successivo: [b:La classe|9660542|La classe|François Bégaudeau|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1327428196l/9660542._SY75_.jpg|869122] ( )
  Demistocle | May 19, 2023 |
Writing: 3.5; Theme: 5.0; Content: 4.0; Language: 3.0; Overall: 3.5

Author Nick Hornby takes up the task of writing an essay each month of the year of 2003 for The Believer magazine. The concept was interesting and I enjoyed the humor of the author, but he used more vulgarity than I would like and at times, he seemed to ramble (even though I believe that might be his style in this type of writing). I haven't read any other books by him so I'm not sure. I love reading books about books and reading, but this wasn't my favorite.

***January 29, 2023*** ( )
  jntjesussaves | Jan 29, 2023 |
This month's Believer announced the end of Hornby's column, and I welcome it with open arms. Every piece of Hornby I've ever read felt like a waste of time. ( )
  Adammmmm | Sep 10, 2019 |
Bought 4 books. 'Nuff said? ( )
  Fiddleback_ | Dec 17, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 67 (next | show all)
Taken in their intended periodic doses, these essays would be simultaneously entertaining and enriching – no small feat, that. Collected, they're still breezy and thought-provoking, but read at once they show Hornby struggling with great seriousness between an Arsenal match, The Fortress of Solitude, and going down to the pub: a dilemma welcomed by, say, Kentucky coal miners or single mothers working retail.
 
Hornby is just humble enough that you cannot hate or resent him, yet authoritative enough that you still retain some reason to respect and be interested in his opinion on books. That in itself is not a feat many writers could pull off so elegantly, if at all.
added by stephmo | editPopMatters, Nicholas Taylor (Feb 1, 2005)
 
This is not a collection of book reviews, but a reading diary of sharp and thoughtful musings on literature that ultimately asks: Why do we read, anyway?
added by stephmo | editBoston Globe, Carol Iaciofano (Jan 19, 2005)
 
Edible poems. The liabilities of blurbs. Books that haunt us and taunt us and keep us up half the night. "The Polysyllabic Spree" is a journey as rich and varied as the world of literature itself, with Hornby perfectly cast as both tour guide and host.
 
What's most valuable about this collection, though, is that Hornby, by dint of his sensibility and the variety of his choices, shows that the distinction still made between reading for the sake of "enrichment" (as that gasbag Harold Bloom insists upon) and reading for pleasure is a phony divide.
added by stephmo | editSalon.com, Charles Taylor (Dec 9, 2004)
 
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To Dave and Vendela
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So this is supposed to be about the how, and when, and why, and what of reading -- about the way that, when reading is going well, one book leads to another and to another, a paper trail of theme and meaning and how, when it's going badly, when books don't stick or take, when your mood and the mood of the book are fighting like cats, you'd rather do anything but attempt the next paragraph, or reread the last one for the tenth time.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Do not combine this work with ‘The Complete Polysyllabic Spree’, which is a British edition that also contains ‘Housekeeping vs The Dirt’.
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- Selections from the monthly Believer Magazine column by this best selling author - Hornby's "diary of an avid reader"In his monthly column "Stuff I've Been Reading," Hornby lists the books he's purchased that month, and briefly discusses the books he's actually read.NIck Hornby's Polysyllabic Spree Includes selected passages from the novels, biographies, collections of poetry, and comics discussed in the column.

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