Saturday, July 24, 2010
A new Nick Hornby novel is always something to look forward to and when I saw his latest novel Juliet, Naked at the Schipol airport in Amsterdam, I grabbed it. I remember reading A Long Way Down a few years ago on a long-haul flight and laughing out loud so much. I think Hornby is perfect for a plane ride or for long sleepless jet-lagged nights.
Juliet, Naked doesn't disappoint. I loved its unique plot. Annie and Duncan have been together for fifteen years and Annie is suddenly realizing she wants out. Duncan has been rather obsessed with an obscure singer, Tucker Crowe, for years. In fact, obsessed is an understatement. He maintains a website, connects with fans on forums from all over the world and even drags the unwilling Annie to the United States on a Tucker Crowe pilgrimage visiting famous restrooms, ex-girlfriends homes, bars and what-nots. Annie would much rather be walking the streets of San Francisco like a real tourist for a change. As soon as they're back home in their little village of Gooleness, Duncan has an affair and Annie decides to end the relationship. Just before she does, a new album of old acoustic recordings by Tucker Crowe titled Juliet, Naked is released. Both Annie and Duncan then write contrasting reviews on the website resulting in Tucker contacting Annie. Saying more will spoil the fun but you can imagine why this was an enjoyable read. As usual, Hornby is spot on with his characters and their dialogue. Although this book isn't his best, it's still quite entertaining.