The Dead Beat: Lost Souls, Lucky Stiffs, and the Perverse Pleasures of Obituaries (P.S.)

3.39 avg rating
( 1,070 ratings by GoodReads )
 
9780060758769: The Dead Beat: Lost Souls, Lucky Stiffs, and the Perverse Pleasures of Obituaries (P.S.)

Marilyn Johnson was enthralled by the remarkable lives that were marching out of this world—so she sought out the best obits in the English language and the people who spent their lives writing about the dead. She surveyed the darkest corners of Internet chat rooms, and made a pilgrimage to London to savor the most caustic and literate obits of all. Now she leads us on a compelling journey into the cult and culture behind the obituary page and the unusual lives we don't quite appreciate until they're gone.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

Review:

Once upon a time, journalism profs duly instructed their greenhorn grads to seek out community papers and the obit pages as logical entrance points into the world of newspaper reporting. Working for cash-strapped local papers allowed novices to practice writing everything from hard news to lifestyle features. Obituaries, meanwhile, were a rung on the ladder of major publications, albeit the lowest. The musty, dusty obit pages also traditionally hosted aging reporters put out to pasture. Not any more, argues Marilyn Johnson in her unabashedly knock-kneed love letter to the obit pages, The Dead Beat. Today, august publications like The New York Times, England's Daily Telegraph, Independent, and The Economist, and Canada's Globe and Mail use exalted members of the fourth estate to turn out smart, hip tributes to widespread, almost cultish, acclaim. Why? Because, as Johnson persuasively demonstrates in her book, truth is almost always stranger than fiction and a well-written, deeply researched obit is not only a vital historical record but a damn fine read over coffee and toast. "God is my assignment editor," cracks Richard Pearson of the Washington Post and if that isn't more interesting than what's going on in your city council chambers, author Johnson and those working the so-called Dead Beat don't know what is.

As Johnson explains in free-wheeling prose, today's obit writers are virtual folk heroes with global Internet followings and their own conventions. With care and an ear for gentle humor, Johnson guides her readers through the surprisingly structured, labyrinthine obit scene, pausing to meet the writers while pondering both the essence of our being and why, in the right hands, the life of an average Joe can be just as riveting as the shenanigans of a high-flying playboy. And infinitely more resonant. Savvy J-school professors and their students are advised to take heed. --Kim Hughes

About the Author:

Marilyn Johnson is the author of Lives in Ruins: Archaeologists and the Seductive Lure of Human Rubble (Harper, 2014), and two other works of non-fiction, The Dead Beat: Lost Souls, Lucky Stiffs, and the Perverse Pleasures of Obituaries (Harper Perennial, 2007) and This Book Is Overdue! How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All (Harper Perennial, 2011). The Dead Beat, a bestseller, was chosen as a Border's Original Voice and was a finalist for the Barnes & Noble Discover Award, and both The Dead Beat and This Book Is Overdue! received Washington Irving Book Awards. Lives in Ruins is a Libraryread's best book for November 2014, and one of Publishers Weekly's 100 Best Books of 2014. Johnson, a former editor and writer for Life, Esquire, and Outside magazines, lives with her husband, Rob Fleder, in New York's Hudson Valley.

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

Johnson, Marilyn
Published by Harper Perennial
ISBN 10: 0060758767 ISBN 13: 9780060758769
New PAPERBACK Quantity Available: 1
Seller
BookShop4U
(PHILADELPHIA, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper Perennial. PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0060758767. Bookseller Inventory # Z0060758767ZN

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 5.52
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

2.

Johnson, Marilyn
Published by Harper Perennial
ISBN 10: 0060758767 ISBN 13: 9780060758769
New PAPERBACK Quantity Available: 1
Seller
Qwestbooks COM LLC
(Bensalem, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper Perennial. PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0060758767. Bookseller Inventory # Z0060758767ZN

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 5.58
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

3.

Johnson, Marilyn
Published by Harper Perennial 2007-01-30 (2007)
ISBN 10: 0060758767 ISBN 13: 9780060758769
New Paperback Quantity Available: 3
Seller
Ebooksweb COM LLC
(Bensalem, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper Perennial 2007-01-30, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Reprint. 0060758767. Bookseller Inventory # Z0060758767ZN

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 5.64
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

4.

Johnson, Marilyn
ISBN 10: 0060758767 ISBN 13: 9780060758769
New Quantity Available: > 20
Seller
BWB
(Valley Stream, NY, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Book Condition: New. Depending on your location, this item may ship from the US or UK. Bookseller Inventory # 97800607587690000000

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 9.70
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

5.

Marilyn Johnson
Published by Harper Collins Publishers
ISBN 10: 0060758767 ISBN 13: 9780060758769
New Quantity Available: > 20
Seller
INDOO
(Avenel, NJ, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper Collins Publishers. Book Condition: New. Brand New. Bookseller Inventory # 0060758767

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 7.84
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.50
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

6.

Johnson, Marilyn
Published by PERENNIAL (2007)
ISBN 10: 0060758767 ISBN 13: 9780060758769
New Quantity Available: > 20
Seller
PBShop
(Wood Dale, IL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description PERENNIAL, 2007. PAP. Book Condition: New. New Book.Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. Bookseller Inventory # IB-9780060758769

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 8.47
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

7.

Marilyn Johnson
Published by HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States (2007)
ISBN 10: 0060758767 ISBN 13: 9780060758769
New Paperback Quantity Available: 10
Seller
The Book Depository US
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. annotated edition. 214 x 149 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Marilyn Johnson was enthralled by the remarkable lives that were marching out of this world--so she sought out the best obits in the English language and the people who spent their lives writing about the dead. She surveyed the darkest corners of Internet chat rooms, and made a pilgrimage to London to savor the most caustic and literate obits of all. Now she leads us on a compelling journey into the cult and culture behind the obituary page and the unusual lives we don t quite appreciate until they re gone. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9780060758769

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 12.48
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

8.

Johnson, Marilyn
ISBN 10: 0060758767 ISBN 13: 9780060758769
New Paperback Quantity Available: > 20
Print on Demand
Seller
BargainBookStores
(Grand Rapids, MI, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Paperback. Book Condition: New. This item is printed on demand. Item doesn't include CD/DVD. Bookseller Inventory # 1099209

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 8.82
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

9.

Marilyn Johnson
Published by HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States (2007)
ISBN 10: 0060758767 ISBN 13: 9780060758769
New Paperback Quantity Available: 10
Seller
The Book Depository
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. annotated edition. 214 x 149 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Marilyn Johnson was enthralled by the remarkable lives that were marching out of this world--so she sought out the best obits in the English language and the people who spent their lives writing about the dead. She surveyed the darkest corners of Internet chat rooms, and made a pilgrimage to London to savor the most caustic and literate obits of all. Now she leads us on a compelling journey into the cult and culture behind the obituary page and the unusual lives we don t quite appreciate until they re gone. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9780060758769

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 12.85
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

10.

Johnson, Marilyn
Published by Harper Perennial (2007)
ISBN 10: 0060758767 ISBN 13: 9780060758769
New Paperback Quantity Available: 20
Seller
Murray Media
(North Miami Beach, FL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper Perennial, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # 0060758767

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 10.84
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 2.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

There are more copies of this book

View all search results for this book