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The World on Sunday: Graphic Art in Joseph Pulitzer's Newspaper (1898 to 1911)
Margaret Brentano
0821261932
September 2005
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
Husband and wife team Baker (Double Fold) and Brentano rescued one of the last surviving sets of the New York World from the British Library and, in a labor of love, sorted through a decade's worth of its issues. They present reproductions of comics, advertisements, portraits, political cartoons, caricatures and other illustrations from the turn-of-the-20th-century mass-circulation daily paper. These images, they say, celebrate a "vaudeville revue of urban urges and preoccupations." To take a sampling of these fascinating illustrations (all elucidated by Brentano's historically illuminating captions): an 1899 two-page real estate spread features delicate black-and-white drawings of the Astor holdings, "like bars of music in a hymnal of real estate." From the same year, a green and red portrait of Mark Twain...


A Box of Matches
Nicholson Baker
0641636105

Hardcover
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A Box of Matches
Nicholson Baker
0375706038
Mar 2004
Paperback
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Book Review
One man's simple, colloquial meditations on his past, his family, and his life's daily minutia are the substance of Nicholson Baker's A Box of Matches. Feeling that life is passing him by, Emmett, a middle-aged medical textbook editor, decides to wake up early each day to sit by a fire in his country house and record his thoughts in a diary. "Good morning," Emmett begins, "it's January and its 4:17 a.m., and I'm going to sit here in the dark." From this vantage point, Emmett reflects stream-of-consciousness style on whatever occurs to him, no matter how mundane: his recent trip to Home Depot, how he met his wife, the habits of the family duck. Routines, such as how he makes his morning coffee in the dark or picks up his underwear with his toes, are described with childlike reverence and directness. All told, nothing...


Selected Shorts: Volume XVIII (18) Lots of Laughs!
Neil Gaiman
0971921822
April 2005
Compact Disc
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Book Description
This three-CD collection features more best-loved selections from National Public Radio's Selected Shorts, an award-winning series of classic and contemporary short fiction read by acclaimed actors and recorded live at Peter Norton Symphony Space in New York City. More than three hours of recordings in each collection capture the intimacy of live performance. Stories are alternately funny, sad, moving, and exciting and make a perfect accompaniment to daily activities such as driving, cooking, exercising, and relaxing.

Lots of Laughs! includes, among others, John Updike’s “Farrell’s Caddie,” read by Charles Keating; Neil Gaiman's "Chivalry," read by Christina Pickles; Ron Carlson's "On the USS Fortitude," read by Laura Esterman; Etgar Keret's "Fatso," read by John Guare; and...


Fermata
Nicholson Baker
0679759336
January 1995
Paperback
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Book Review
The Fermata is the most risky of Nicholson Baker's emotional histories. His narrator, Arno Strine, is a 35-year-old office temp who is writing his autobiography. "It's harder than I thought!" he admits. His "Fold-powers" are easier; he can stop the world and use it as his own pleasure ground. Arno uses this gift not for evil or material gain (he would feel guilty about stealing), though he does undress a good number of women and momentarily place them in compromising positions--always, in his view, with respect and love. Anyone who can stop time and refer in self-delight to his "chronanisms" can't be all bad! Like Baker's other books, The Fermata gains little from synopsis. The pleasure is literally in the text. What's memorable is less the sex and the sex toys (including the...


The Enjoyment of Music
Joseph Machlis
0393978788
Jan 2003
Hardcover
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Book Description
With nearly three million copies sold over eight editions, The Enjoyment of Music is the best-selling music appreciation text of all time. Spanning the Middle Ages through the twenty-first century, the text offers a thorough introduction to the elements of music, a broad overview of the history of musical styles, and fascinating cultural contexts and perspectives. The Ninth Edition of this classic text features a stunning new design, exciting new repertory, and an unmatched ancillary and media package.

About the Author
The late Joseph Machlis was professor of music at Queens College of the City University of New York. Among his many publications are Introduction to Contemporary Music (Norton), several novels, and singing translations for many operas. Kristine Forney is...


Vox
Nicholson Baker
0679742115
January 1993
Paperback
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From Publishers Weekly
Baker's self-indulgent novel, a 14-week PW bestseller in cloth, transcribes a long telephone conversation between two people who meet over a phone-sex call-in line. Author tour. Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal
Jim and Abby meet over the phone when they both dial one of those 976 party lines that are advertised in adult magazines. After some exploratory small talk, they retire to the electronic "back room" for a more intimate chat. Their long conversation makes up the entire book. If the premise sounds a bit thin, remember that Nicholson Baker's brilliant first novel The Mezzanine ( LJ 11/1/88) was about an office worker's lunch-hour expedition to buy new shoelaces. Like all great artists, Baker has the ability to make familiar objects...


Double Fold: Libraries and the Assault on Paper
Nicholson Baker
0375726217
April 2002
Paperback
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From Publishers Weekly
All writers of course love the printed word, but few are those willing to start foundations in order to preserve it. Not only has noted novelist Baker (The Mezzanine; Vox; etc.) done so, he's also written a startling expos‚ of an ugly conspiracy perpetuated by the very people entrusted to preserve our history librarians. Baker started the American Newspaper Repository in 1999, when he discovered that the only existing copies of several major U.S. newspapers were going to be auctioned off by the British Library. Not only were U.S. libraries not interested, it turned out that they'd tossed their own copies years before. Why? Baker uncovered an Orwellian universe in our midst in which preservation equals destruction, and millions of tax dollars have funded and continue to fund the destruction of irreplaceable...


Room Temperature
Nicholson Baker
0679734406
Apr 1991
Paperback
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Book Review
Nicholson Baker writes in 360-degree Sensurround--his descriptions of the seemingly banal awakening the most jaded of senses into recognition, admiration, and amusement. In Room Temperature, his self-deprecating, endlessly curious narrator is at home giving his baby girl a bottle and allowing his mind to wander. Uppermost in his thoughts are his wife and daughter, but there is also that obsession with commas and some concern with tiny taboos like nose-picking and stealing change from his parents. Truth-telling is the operative mode; at one point he tries to get his wife to explain a doodle by quoting a review of early Yeats: "Always true is always new." Room Temperature is a rare novel of domestic pleasure and stability, with a twist. "Was there ever a limit between us? Would disgust ever outweigh love?"...


Mezzanine
Nicholson Baker
0679725768
January 1990
Paperback
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From Publishers Weekly
Baker's irresistibly readable short novel presents the quirkyand often hilariousinner life of a thoroughly modern office worker. With high wit and in precisely articulated prose, the unnamed narrator examines, in minute and comically digressive detail, the little things in life that illustrate how one addresses a problem or a new idea: the plastic straw (and its annoying tendency to float), the vacuous ci vilities of office chatter, doorknobs, neckties, escalators and the laughable evolution of milk deliveryfrom those old-fashioned hefty bottles to the folding carton. Using the keenly observed odds and ends of day-to-day consciousness, Baker allows his narrator to re-create the budding perceptions of a child facing a larger mysterious world, as each event in his day conjures up memories of previous incidents....


U and I
Nicholson Baker
0679735755
Feb 1992
Paperback
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Book Review
Nicholson Baker is most famous for Vox, the phone-sex novel Monica Lewinsky gave President Clinton, but the vastly superior U and I contains Baker's own dirty little secret: an obsession with John Updike. Not since Salieri in Peter Shaffer's Amadeus has one man's genius so publicly tormented another. Baker's ambition is a naked thing shivering with sensitivity, like a snail bereft of its shell. Yet his book about himself thinking about Updike is as hilariously self-knowing as it is excruciatingly sincere. And Baker is not mad (not quite). He does have a few things in common with his idol: fiction precociously published in The New Yorker, psoriasis, insomnia, a keen eye for everyday minutiae, and a mischievously felicitous prose style. He is, however, funnier. Hunting for Updike at The Atlantic's 125th anniversary party, he...


Vandals in the Stacks : A Response to Nicholson Baker's Assault on Libraries
Richard J. Cox
0313323445
June 2002
Hardcover
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From Booklist
Novelist and essayist Baker burst onto the library scene with his famous (infamous?) 1994 New Yorker essay attacking libraries for discarding old card catalogs. In 2000, Baker attacked libraries for discarding old newspapers, also in The New Yorker, and then a year later in his book Double Fold: Libraries and the Assault on Paper (Random, 2001). Archivist and University of Pittsburgh professor Cox began responding to Baker early on, first with some sympathy regarding the historical value of our old catalogs but then with growing dismay at Baker's "save everything" mentality. The Society of American Archivists requested an answer to Baker's book, and that grew into this book. Unlike Baker's work, which was aimed at the general public, Cox's response is aimed at professional librarians and...


Naughty Bits: The Steamiest and Most Scandalous Sex Scenes from the World's Great Books
Jack Murnighan (Editor)
0609806602
May 2001
Paperback
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From Publishers Weekly
Jack Murnighan, former editor-in-chief of sex-friendly Web site Nerve.com, gathers short erotic excerpts from works by more than 70 authors from the Marquis de Sade to Thomas Pynchon, Sappho to Jeanette Winterson, Ovid to J.G. Ballard. Culled from his popular weekly online column, The Naughty Bits (also Brit slang for genitalia) is billed as "the book that literary perverts have been waiting for." One of several recent Nerve.com tie-ins, it's a great idea and one needn't be especially literary or perverted to enjoy it. Murnighan's thoroughly good-natured, erudite introductions add to the bawdy fun. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal
Most people don't read a good book or have great sex nearly as often as they should; then again, most...


The Everlasting Story of Nory
Nicholson Baker
0679763759
Mar 1999
Paperback
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Book Review
Sex and the adult cerebellum have tended to be Nicholson Baker's cherished subjects, and not necessarily in that order. In The Everlasting Story of Nory, however, he turns his literary microscopy in an entirely new direction, exploring the consciousness of a child. Nory, we are told, "was a nine-year-old girl from America with straight brown bangs and brown eyes. She was interested in dentistry or being a paper engineer when she grew up." This future dentist or paper engineer is also ensconced for a year in the English town of Threll, where her family is taking a sabbatical from life in Palo Alto.

Baker's novel is endearing, entertaining, and most of all, accurate. The author recognizes that an authentic nine-year-old is incapable of long, intricate narratives, so he divides Nory's story...



The Size of Thoughts
Nicholson Baker
0679776249
Feb 1997
Paperback
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Book Review
Novelist and essayist Nicholson Baker has had a small but well-deserved cult following since his first book, The Mezzanine, and the publication of the literary sex-bomb Vox saw his popularity mushroom. Baker's great gift is a precision of observational detail that has a peculiarly incisive effect on a reader's consciousness. Here is over a decade's worth of his essays and articles, including the much-praised card catalogue article first published in the New Yorker. The Size of Thoughts, through its varied forays into the realms of the overlooked, the underfunded, and the wrongfully scrapped, is a funny and thought-provoking book by one of the most distinctive stylists and thinkers of our time. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers...


Checkpoint
Nicholson Baker
1400079853
April 2005
Paperback
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From Bookmarks Magazine
If you don’t like George W., you might like Checkpoint—at least its uncontrolled rage against the administration. In his seventh novel, Baker focuses his trademark style of writing minutiae on a rambling conversation between two Bush detractors. “[It] makes Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 9/11 look like a work of Jamesian subtlety and nuance. There isn’t a graceful or interesting sentence in this blunt, plotless, obscenity-laden screed,” says Entertainment Weekly. The New York Times Book Review calls it a “scummy little book.” Other reviews did not improve the book’s (or political tirade’s?) standing. Checkpoint may be worth reading as a passionate analysis of the Iraq war, but, even with its heightened emotion, it’s not a very original or engaging one....

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