The Anthologist

Front Cover
Simon & Schuster, 2009 - Poetry - 243 pages
34 Reviews
Nicholson Baker's new novel, The Anthologist, is narrated by Paul Chowder, a poet of some little reknown who is sitting in his barn most of the time trying to write the introduction to a new anthology of poetry called Only Rhyme. He's having a hard time getting started because his career is falling apart, his girlfriend Roz has recently left him, and he is thinking about the poets throughout history who have suffered far worse and actually deserve to feel sorry for themselves. He has also promised his readers that he will reveal many wonderful secrets and tips and tricks about poetry, and it looks like the introduction will be a little longer than he'd thought.

What unfolds is a wholly entertaining and beguiling love story about poetry, among other things; Paul tells us about all of the great poets, from Tennyson, Swinburne, and Yeats to the moderns (Roethke, Bogan, Merwin) to the contemporary scene as well as the editorial staff of The New Yorker's editorial department. And what he reveals about the rhythm and music of poetry itself is astonishing and makes you realize how incredibly important poetry is to our lives. At the same time, Paul manages just barely to realize all of this himself and what results is a tender, wonderfully romantic, often hilarious, and inspired novel.

The Anthologist bears all the beloved hallmarks of Baker's novels: it is witty, erudite, breathtakingly articulate and stylish, and full of the whimsical, compulsive elements that have made its author a worldwide success.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - oldblack - LibraryThing

Too much poetry, too didactic, and not enough story for my taste, but nonetheless it has encouraged me to look for more of Baker’s work. It’s about a man who thinks he’s a failure, but he finds in the ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - ternary - LibraryThing

Like a sleepy love song laced with self-doubt, anxiety, and endless distraction, harmonized to the major poets of the last two centuries. Read full review

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Contents

Section 1
1
Section 2
19
Section 3
33
Copyright

14 other sections not shown

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About the author (2009)

Nicholson Baker has published seven novels and three works of nonfiction, including "Double Fold: Libraries and the Assault on Paper."
Nicholson Baker has published seven novels and three works of nonfiction, including "Double Fold: Libraries and the Assault on Paper.

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