Title: NICK HORNBY SONGBOOK - Rare Pristine Copy of...
Publisher: San Francisco, CA: McSweeney's Books, 2002
Book Condition: Fine
Dust Jacket Condition: None, As Issued
Signed: Signed by Author
Edition: 1st Edition.
1st Printing. Signed. 147 pages. Published in 2002. The author's collection of essays and prose-poems on music. Now considered a contemporary classic. The First Hardcover Edition. Precedes and should not be confused with the Softcover Edition. Published in a small and limited print run as a hardcover original only that sold out shortly after publication. The First Edition is now rare. A brilliant production by Marcel Dzama and Alysha Naples: Regular-sized volume format. Pictorial hard boards with titles on the cover and spine, as issued. Text by Nick Hornby. Original art by Marcel Dzama. CD containing 11 selections attached on the inside back endcover. Printed on archival stock paper in Iceland to the highest standards. Without DJ, as issued. Presents Nick Hornby's "Songbook". An instant hit: Still the best book on popular music ever written in our time, by an ardent fan who is also a brilliant writer. With the exception of Marcel Dzama's "The Berlin Years" (which is an Artist Book), this is also the single best book published by McSweeney's. Highly personal and idiosyncratic, Hornby is singularly qualified to write a book about popular music, having written the novel, "High Fidelity", which became the basis of a fine film (with John Cusack). He has also written music criticism for The New Yorker Magazine. The personal essays on music in "Nick Hornby Songbook" pop off the page with the immediacy and passion of an artfully arranged mixed tape. But then, who better to riff on his favorite songs than the author of that literary music-lover's delight, "High Fidelity"? "And mostly all I have to say about these songs is that I love them and want to sing along to them and force other people to listen to them and get cross when these other people don't like them as much as I do" (Nick Hornby). Apart from the indispensable accompanying CD, Hornby's pitch-perfect prose is also enhanced by the quirkily and indelibly beautiful illustrations of the Canadian artist Marcel Dzama. An absolute "must-have" title for Nick Hornby and Marcel Dzama collectors. This copy is very prominently and beautifully signed in black pen-marker on the title page by Nick Hornby. It is signed directly on the page itself, not on a tipped-in page. This title is a contemporary classic. This is one of very few such signed copies of the First Hardcover Edition/First Printing still available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a pristine beauty. A rare signed copy thus. Nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism in 2003, the first book by McSweeney's nominated in the hotly contested category by one of the most prestigious literary award bodies in America. Winner of the E. M. Forster Award from the Academy of Arts and Letters. Two of the finest writer/artists of our time. A fine collectible copy. (SEE ALSO OTHER NICK HORNBY, MARCEL DZAMA, AND MCSWEENEY'S TITLES IN OUR CATALOG) ISBN 0971904774. Bookseller Inventory # 6566
Synopsis: McSweeney's is excited to release Songbook \226 a brand-new collection of short, personal essays by Nick Hornby on 31 of his favorite songs and songwriters. This hardcover book has 4-color illustrations by Marcel Dzama throughout and comes complete with a CD featuring 11 songs discussed within.
Proceeds from Songbook will benefit TreeHouse and 826 Valencia.
The TreeHouse Trust is a U.K. charity based in central London, established in 1997 to provide an educational Centre of Excellence for children with autism and related communication disorders.
826 Valencia is a nonprofit learning center in the Mission District of San Francisco, providing free writing-based tutoring and workshops for students throughout the Bay Area. Students can drop in for individual one-on-one tutoring, register for workshops, or attend field trips through local schools and community organizations.
Review: The personal essays in Nick Hornby's Songbook pop off the page with the immediacy and passion of an artfully arranged mix-tape. But then, who better to riff on 31 of his favorite songs than the author of that literary music-lover's delight, High Fidelity?
"And mostly all I have to say about these songs is that I love them, and want to sing along to them, and force other people to listen to them, and get cross when these other people don't like them as much as I do," writes Hornby. More than his humble disclaimer, he captures "the narcotic need" for repeat plays of Nelly Furtado's "I'm Like a Bird," and testifies that "you can hear God" in Rufus Wainwright's coy reinterpretation of his father Loudon's "One Man Guy" ("given a neat little twist by Wainwright Junior's sexual orientation..."). Especially poignant is his reaction to "A Minor Incident," a Badly Drawn Boy song written for the soundtrack of the film version of Hornby's book About a Boy. While Hornby was writing the book, his young son was diagnosed with autism--a fact that adds greater resonance to the seemingly unrelated song he hears much later: "I write a book that isn't about my kid, and then someone writes a beautiful song based on an episode in my book that turns out to mean something much more personal to me than my book ever did." Meandering asides and observations like this linger in your mind (just like a fantastic song) long after you've flipped past the final page.
The 11-song CD that accompanies the book is a great touch, but it's too bad it doesn't contain all of the featured songs--most likely the unfortunate result of licensing difficulties. Overall, Hornby's pitch-perfect prose, the quirky illustrations from Canadian artist Marcel Dzama, and a good cause--proceeds benefit TreeHouse, a U.K. charity for children with autism, and 826 Valencia, the nonprofit Bay Area learning center--add up to make Songbook a hit. Solid gold. --Brad Thomas Parsons
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