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Travelling Sprinkler

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Imprint: Serpent's Tail
Subject: Fiction

Travelling Sprinkler

Nicholson Baker

A brilliantly clever, comic novel about love in middle-age by an American master.

eBook (ePUB/MOBI)?
9781782830764 (5 Jun 2014)

About the book

Paul Chowder is a poet, but he's fallen out of love with writing poems. He hasn't fallen out of love with his ex-girlfriend Roz, though. In fact he misses her desperately.

As he struggles to come to terms with Roz's new relationship with a doctor, Paul turns to his acoustic guitar for comfort and inspiration, and fills his days writing protest songs, going to Quaker meetings, struggling through Planet Fitness workouts, wondering if he could become a techno DJ, and experimenting with becoming a cigar smoker.

Written in Baker's beautifully unconventional prose, and scored with musical influences from Debussy to Tracy Chapman to Paul himself, Travelling Sprinkler is an enchanting, hilarious, and deeply necessary novel.

'I think the job of the novelist is to write about interesting things, including things that might not seem all that interesting at first glance, and to offer evidence that life is worth living' Nicholson Baker

About the author

Nicholson Baker was born in New York City in 1957 and grew up in Rochester. In his many works of fiction and nonfiction (including Vox, Checkpoint and Human Smoke), he has written about John Updike, about getting up early in the morning, about the inner life of a nine-year-old girl, about a man on his lunch hour, about the beginnings of the Second World War, about sex, and many other subjects too numerous to list here. Travelling Sprinkler is his tenth novel and his fifteenth book. He lives in Maine with his family.


Exquisitely sublime

- The New York Times

Goofy and elegaic, intricately patterned and moving

- New Yorker

Baker's endearingly comedic, covertly philosophical love story mischievously celebrates song and silence, steadfastness and loving-kindness

- Booklist

The book is a delight: funny, tender and endearingly bonkers. A lesser writer dealing with a hapless, guitar-plucking, cigar-puffing poet on the slide in his fifties would be tempted to shovel trouble at him for comic or emotional effect. Baker does the opposite, imbuing Chowder not only with a feverish intellectual curiosity but with a generosity of spirit...Baker has a strange and interesting mind, and a life-enhancing wit to go with it. Travelling Sprinkler sees him at the top of his form.

- Terence Blacker, Independent

He once again shows he's a master of gentle, obsessively detailed comedy. Terrific.

- Harry Ritchie, Daily Mail

Additional Information

Imprint: Serpent's Tail
Subject: Fiction

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