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About a Boy by Nick Hornby

About a Boy (1998)

by Nick Hornby

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
8,736127559 (3.75)163
  1. 50
    High Fidelity by Nick Hornby (Maurizio70)
  2. 20
    May We Be Forgiven by A. M. Homes (millihelen)
    millihelen: Another book where an incongruous group of people come together to form a buoyant, chaotic family.
  3. 10
    A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers (derelicious)
  4. 00
    This Is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper (BeckyJG)

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English (119)  German (2)  Italian (2)  Norwegian (1)  Dutch (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (126)
Showing 1-5 of 119 (next | show all)
[b: About a Boy|4271|About a Boy|Nick Hornby|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1382004144s/4271.jpg|2961843] was a great deal more likable than the film that bears its name. The characters were far easier to relate to, and the writing did credit to the scenario that I felt the film didn't quite do.

[a: Nick Hornby|2929|Nick Hornby|https://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1422915487p2/2929.jpg] is an incredibly likable author. He writes fiction that could easily come off as far too sweet, but never quite does. The pessimism present in the bulk of his work never quite tends toward the morbid hopelessness than one might expect. Rather, he seems to embody the concept that we all make mistakes and are trying our best and somehow, perhaps, we might all make it through all right.

Nothing to really hate about that. ( )
  Lepophagus | Jun 14, 2018 |
Couldn't get into this, had to leave it unfinished. Somehow I prefer the film. ( )
  lydiasbooks | Jan 17, 2018 |
I read some Nick Hornby books, and this is by far the one I liked most. His writing style is easy to read, entertaining but also touching. There are whole passages in the book which I could quote that I loved. Also it made me want to listen to Nirvana again - it captioned the whole 90s era pretty well. ( )
  Geektesse | Dec 10, 2017 |
Avevo già visto il film, quindi ero già preparata alla storia: con mia grande sorpresa, ho scoperto che il libro ha un finale completamente diverso, che preferisco rispetto alla versione cinematografica.
Hornby ha una scrittura scorrevole e simpatica, spesso diretta e senza fronzoli. Il suo humour è tipicamente inglese e alcune situazioni sono così assurde che non possono essere che reali. ( )
  LaPizia | Aug 3, 2017 |
This was one of my favorite movies growing up, and so I'm glad I finally read the source material. I grew up with a mother who was very unstable. Hornby's portrayal of life as a depressive's child is really spot on. As an angsty teenager, I really felt like Nick Hornby got me. That this still has the same emotional resonance for me years later is really a testament to the writing. ( )
  beckyrenner | Dec 29, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 119 (next | show all)
A follow-up to High Fidelity, British writer Hornby's superb 1996 novel about pop-music obsession, About A Boy (the film rights to which have reportedly been sold for $3 million) is an acerbic, emotionally richer yet no less funny tale. Will (36, single, lonely, in search of a girlfriend and a life) meets Marcus (12, lonely, in search of happiness for himself and his suicidal mother). At first, befriending Marcus is merely an attempt to assuage a guilty conscience brought about by a life of leisure.
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Love and thanks to David Evans, Adrienne Maguire, Caroline Dawnay, Virginia Bovell, Abigail Morris, Wendy Carlton, Harry Ritchie and Amanda Posey.
In memory of Liz Knights.
First words
'Have you split up now?'
It was terrible.  Terrible! But driving really fast behind the ambulance was fantastic.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0141007338, Paperback)

Will Lightman is a Peter Pan for the 1990s. At 36, the terminally hip North Londoner is unmarried, hyper-concerned with his coolness quotient, and blithely living off his father's novelty-song royalties. Will sees himself as entirely lacking in hidden depths--and he's proud of it! The only trouble is, his friends are succumbing to responsibilities and children, and he's increasingly left out in the cold. How can someone brilliantly equipped for meaningless relationships ensure that he'll continue to meet beautiful Julie Christie-like women and ensure that they'll throw him over before things get too profound? A brief encounter with a single mother sets Will off on his new career, that of "serial nice guy." As far as he's concerned--and remember, concern isn't his strong suit--he's the perfect catch for the young mother on the go. After an interlude of sexual bliss, she'll realize that her child isn't ready for a man in their life and Will can ride off into the Highgate sunset, where more damsels apparently await. The only catch is that the best way to meet these women is at single-parent get-togethers. In one of Nick Hornby's many hilarious (and embarrassing) scenes, Will falls into some serious misrepresentation at SPAT ("Single Parents--Alone Together"), passing himself off as a bereft single dad: "There was, he thought, an emotional truth here somewhere, and he could see now that his role-playing had a previously unsuspected artistic element to it. He was acting, yes, but in the noblest, most profound sense of the word."

What interferes with Will's career arc, of course, is reality--in the shape of a 12-year-old boy who is in many ways his polar opposite. For Marcus, cool isn't even a possibility, let alone an issue. For starters, he's a victim at his new school. Things at home are pretty awful, too, since his musical therapist mother seems increasingly in need of therapy herself. All Marcus can do is cobble together information with a mixture of incomprehension, innocence, self-blame, and unfettered clear sight. As fans of Fever Pitch and High Fidelity already know, Hornby's insight into laddishness magically combines the serious and the hilarious. About a Boy continues his singular examination of masculine wish-fulfillment and fear. This time, though, the author lets women and children onto the playing field, forcing his feckless hero to leap over an entirely new--and entirely welcome--set of emotional hurdles.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:43 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

A comedy on a bachelor in London who specializes in affairs with single mothers. To improve his chances, he joins a single parents' association and gets a boy to pretend he is his son.

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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