Books Worth Buying: The Polysyllabic Spree

6 Sep

The Polysyllabic Spree by Nick Hornby

Today’s “Books Worth Buying” segment comes to you from a new friend of mine. Some of you may already know him. He is Rob Zimmermann, writer, poet, blogger, and lover of the written word. I’m so pleased to have him here today to highlight his “Books Worth Buying” pick, The Polysyllabic Spree by Nick Hornby.

Books Worth Buying. That’s not exactly the easiest type of post to write is it? All books are worth buying if you think about it…even some of the horrible ones. At least they make great door stops 😉

One of the books that pops into my mind is actually a collection of essays in a monthly column for a magazine. Nick Hornby, author of one of my favorite books High Fidelity, is a writer for The Believer magazine. The column he writes is called “Stuff I’ve Been Reading”. The book in question is The Polysyllabic Spree. This is the first of four collections of these essays, but I feel any of them are really worth buying.

The idea behind the column is for Hornby to write about the books he’s bought and the books he’s read in a given month. It seems simple enough. And also sounds like it could be boring once you get past reading the list of bought/read books. But it’s not boring at all, or simple. I love Hornby’s fiction, but when reading his non-fiction I’ve grown to love him as an author even more. In these essays the reader gets to see his personality and humor shine through. He’s very honest as well. If he didn’t read a book, he says so. If he didn’t get to read more than a magazine in a month, he let’s the reader know. He isn’t afraid to admit to buying books even if he knows he may never read them either (the sign of a true book hoarder if you ask me, I’m the same way).

I feel that this book is worth buying for anyone who loves Hornby’s work or for anyone interested in seeing an author’s honest reading life. It’s great to know that I’m not alone in having a “books bought” list twice to three times larger than a “books read” list. This is fact, one summer I made a list and it was around three bought to every one read, at times it may be higher.

Description: “Books are, let’s face it, better than everything else,” writes Nick Hornby in his “Stuff I’ve Been Reading” column in The Believer. “If we played cultural Fantasy Boxing League, and made books go 15 rounds in the ring against the best that any other art form had to offer, then books would win pretty much every time. Go on, try it. The Magic Flute v. Middlemarch? Middlemarch in six. The Last Supper v. Crime and Punishment? Fyodor on point and every now and again you’d get a shock, because that happens in sport, so Back to the Future III might land a lucky punch on Rabbit, Run; but I’m still backing literature 29 times out of 30.” This book collects Hornby’s popular columns in a single, artfully illustrated volume with selected passages from the novels, biographies, collections of poetry, and comics under discussion.” – Taken from Goodreads

Here’s where you can find The Polysyllabic Spree by Nick Hornby:

And here’s a little about Rob:

Robert is a writer. Most of the time his thoughts will grace the pages in the form of poetry, but occasionally some short pieces of fiction will show their faces. His work mainly touches on experiences that shape who he is today and are emotionally engaging but easily accessible to those not familiar with much poetry.

When Robert isn’t writing for himself, he’s writing to help others. In his blog, A Life Among The Pages, Robert posts numerous book reviews, interviews, and other book related posts to help out fellow writers in any way he can.

Thanks for stopping by today! I hope to have Rob back in the near future. With a bookshelf like his, I know he’ll always have another title for you to put on your “Books Worth Buying” list!!



4 Responses to “Books Worth Buying: The Polysyllabic Spree”

  1. Robert Zimmermann September 6, 2012 at 4:18 pm #

    Thanks for having me Tara. It’s a great segment you have here. I’ll have to come buy and share a few more great books in the future…maybe even yours 😉


    • tarawood21 September 6, 2012 at 4:19 pm #

      You are welcome here anytime, Rob. Would love to have you back.


  2. writermirandastork September 6, 2012 at 4:19 pm #

    Another awesome book to add to the TBR list! It sounds really different from what I would normally read as well. Thanks for the great post guys! 🙂


  3. Cinta García (@Austenite78) September 6, 2012 at 5:19 pm #

    Great post! Every book recommended by Rob is a book to consider reading 😀


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