Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Juliet, Naked - Nick Hornby

On a recent work trip to Pueblo, Colorado, I failed to pack enough books to get me through the inevitable airport delays. So, I had to hunt down a Barnes & Noble, and pick up a book I've been waiting forever to get from the library. As I've stated many times on this blog, I love Nick Hornby. His books are always entertaining and easy to read - they are like comfort food for the mind. Plus, Jake also likes him, so I know I could pass this one along when I finished. Juliet, Naked starts with the floundering 15 year relationship between Annie and Duncan. Duncan is obsessed with one-time famous American singer Tucker Crowe. So obsessed that he manages a website devoted to interpreting and re-interpreting lyrics to songs written decades earlier. When Crowe releases an acoustic version of his most successful album, Duncan is in seventh heaven - and rushes to his computer to share his discovery with the world. Annie, on the other hand, thinks the acoustic version is basically garbage. Their difference of opinion causes them both to reevaluate their relationship. Can Duncan really love someone who is so clearly unable to recognize genius? Can Annie waste any more of her life with someone so irritatingly enamored with a musical has-been? And so, Annie posts her own review of the album - a review which catches the eye of Tucker Crowe himself, igniting an email correspondence of monumental significance. In typical Hornby style, this book captures the personality of the masculine loser/possible diamond in the rough perfectly, and provides an honest assessment of relationships that is filled with both resignation and a glimmer of hope. Juliet, Naked is not Hornby's best work, but it does have a few laugh out loud funny lines, and brought me the happiness I needed in the middle of my bleak work adventure.

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