Michael Palin Hemingway's Chair

ISBN 13: 9780312185930

Hemingway's Chair

3.36 avg rating
( 1,231 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780312185930: Hemingway's Chair

A renowned British comedian and travel writer pens his first novel about a mild-mannered postmaster obsessed with Ernest Hemingway, who must decide whether to fight like his hero's characters or acquiesce when his local office goes high tech.

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

Review:

A quiet, unassuming postman develops an unexpected obsession in this quiet, unassuming--and very English--first novel from Michael Palin of Monty Python fame. Martin Sproale is the very model of a modern Walter Mitty. An assistant postmaster in the coastal town of Threston, he lives at home with his mother and rides his bicycle to work each day. It's a pleasant but uneventful sort of life, marked only by Martin's growing fascination with the life, works, and personal style of Ernest Hemingway. "Tea-drinkers, mothers, post office administrators, would-be fiancées. Little people with little minds," Martin thinks. "When would they realise that only through confrontation with danger could life be lived to the full?" Martin has transformed his room into a kind of Hemingway shrine, complete with bullfighting poster, several first editions, the same kind of typewriter Papa used--even a vintage WWI Italian army first-aid cabinet filled with all the liquors he liked to drink.

Two things happen to shatter Martin's equilibrium. First, a new, corporate-style postal manager takes the job that by rights should have been his, promptly beginning a campaign of privatization and modernization that threatens all Martin holds dear. Second, an American woman outbids him on Hemingway memorabilia; a scholar, "not a fan," of the writer, Ruth Kohler lives in seclusion nearby while she works on a book about the women in Hemingway's life. Martin and Ruth engage in some increasingly heated role-playing as the conflict over Threston's post office comes to a slow boil. Deprived of his position, his cozy world crashing down around him, Martin finds himself acting more like the he-man writer than he ever thought possible. Palin's debut is in some ways a surprise: poignant rather than funny, skillfully paced and couched in workmanlike but hardly spectacular prose. Readers expecting Pythonesque absurdity might find themselves disappointed--but only at first; with patience, this book unfolds its more subtle pleasures with understated aplomb.

From the Publisher:

"His book is well paced, his prose carefully hewn, his characters fully developed and convincingly human. And his comic timing is impeccable." --The Washington Post

"This book's strengths are...its dry, deftly understated wit; its careful plot and character construction; its clever, on-the-money dialogue...Those pleasures carry you a long way." --The New York Times Book Review

"Funnyman Palin brings a light touch to this yarn, treating his characters and their many weaknesses with an affection that will have readers rooting for his unlikely hero." --Publishers Weekly

"The spirit of Hemingway is evident in Palin's prose." --The Plain Dealer (Cleveland)

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

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

Michael Palin
Published by St Martins Press (1998)
ISBN 10: 0312185936 ISBN 13: 9780312185930
New Hardcover First Edition Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Irish Booksellers
(Rumford, ME, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description St Martins Press, 1998. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0312185936

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 24.22
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

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

2.

Palin, Michael
Published by St Martins Press (1998)
ISBN 10: 0312185936 ISBN 13: 9780312185930
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 2
Seller:
Murray Media
(North Miami Beach, FL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description St Martins Press, 1998. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110312185936

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 26.66
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 1.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds