Annie loves Duncan - or thinks she does. Duncan loves Annie, but then, all of a sudden, he doesn't. Duncan really loves Tucker Crowe, a reclusive Dylanish singer-songwriter who stopped making music 10 years ago. Annie stops loving Duncan, and starts getting her own life. In doing so, she initiates an e-mail correspondence with Tucker, and a connection is forged between two lonely people who are looking for more out of what they've got.
Tucker's been languishing (and he's unnervingly aware of it), living in rural Pennsylvania with what he sees as his one hope for redemption amid a life of emotional and artistic ruin - his young son, Jackson. But then there's also the new material he's about to release to the world: an acoustic, stripped-down version of his greatest album, Juliet - entitled, Juliet, Naked.
What happens when a washed-up musician looks for another chance? And miles away, a restless, childless woman looks for a change? Juliet, Naked is a powerfully engrossing, humblingly humorous novel about music, love, loneliness, and the struggle to live up to one's promise.
©2009 Nick Hornby; (P)2009 Penguin
Say something about yourself!
New to this medium, I wondered when I would find an audiobook that would make me laugh uncontrollably in public. Juliet, Naked is it. Juliet, Naked is the title of the catalyst of the story, an unreleased album.
This is a character driven book and author Hornsby has a real talent for capturing modern relationships, dialog and character. If while listening, a fallible and lost Annie, Tucker or Duncan you actually know doesn't spring to mind, then you probably are one of them. Each of these engaging and human characters will have you rooting for them to 'get it together'.
Although the great Bill Irwin (look him up, you'll probably think "oh, man- Is that his name? I love that guy!) is listed as the narrator, there are actually three fine narrators: one for each of the main characters. I wasn't certain how this would work, preferring a single narrator, but it fits perfectly with the structure of Hornsby's story, enhancing the listening experience.
I'm reserving 5 stars for experiences that blow my mind; listening to Juliet, Naked was only absolutely wonderful.
Nervous about the male narrator, but it was fine. I got this based on other reviews, and I really enjoyed the story. It is always a gamble with new authors but I won out on this one. It is nice to enjoy something that is not my usual fluff books.
I thought more of how it compared to real stories than other books.
I adored all of the characters, especially Tucker Crow.
I savored the book at a leisurely pace.
This is unlike other books I read but I found it charming and thought provoking. I highly recommend it, especially to followers of the indie music scene.
Lots of fun, in typical, unabashedly cliche, Nick Hornby style. Boring-ish, stuck-in-a-rut British girl settled for a boring-ish British Guy, who is obsessed with an obscure, reclusive rock legend… turns out reclusive rock legend is not all that interesting in real life. Funny how it all works out, and how a cast of otherwise boring characters manages to weave a rather interesting story. Malcolm, Annie’s “therapist” is a hoot.
I just assume Juliet, Naked will be picked up and turned into a film, like his other books, and I wonder which British actors will play which characters. I imagine Bill Nighy as Tucker - he played such a wonderful has-been rocker in Love, Actually. John Cusack would make a great Duncan. My hope would be a sensational casting choice for Malcolm, the therapist - maybe Alan Rickman? Who would play Annie? This will be an enjoyable film. Wait for it! Meanwhile, enjoy the audiobook.
I usually like Nick Hornby's writing better than his stories, but in Juliet, Naked, they both come together for a satisfying book. The plot will resonate with anyone who has been or has lived with a rabid fan. Fun, sweet and thoughtful.
This book got me back into reading. Loved every minute of it, however I feel like Hornby got distracted midway through the book and lost track of things. The last quarter of the book lacked plot and climax. I'm going to give High Fidelity a try. I'm a huge fan of this writing style, and I thoroughly enjoyed the omniscient point of view.
Sometimes we get to midlife and we discover the anthem is not a proud, "I did it my way!" But instead more of a what if and how did...nick hornby's characters find themselves facing the mess they have made of their lives.
I've been a long time fan of Nick Hornby having read all his novels. I adore his distinctive British humor, but more importantly his very interesting and complex male characters. As a woman -- especially one who has a wonderful father, brother, husband and two sons -- I dislike the way men are often portrayed as unthinking buffoons. Mr. Hornby refuses to go down that road and is why I love his stories. Juliet, Naked does not disappoint. All the characters are interesting and flawed, but not exasperatingly so. This production is brilliant in using multiple narrators to convey the various points of view and musical cues to signal these changes. Very well done.
PS - when my sons get older I plan on making them read the entire Nick Hornby library -- especially "Slam".
The audio version really brought the story to life. At first, I was skeptical about the different voices used to represent the three main characters, but I soon realized how wonderful and vivid they made the listening experience.
I liked how the audio brought the perspectives of the main characters into focus. Of course, I love Nick Hornby's writing. He makes me laugh out loud!
First time I've ever listened to a Bill Irwin performance. I enjoyed it very much.
The book made me laugh, mostly. It was really touching and funny.
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