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Publisher's Summary

A boomer, an xer, and a millennial walk into a book...

Meet Hammerhead Hirsch, a charismatic middle-aged boho known in the '60s as "the pugilist poet" for his Golden Gloves boxing crown and beat poetry chops. Thirty years later, Head has become a first-time father, and his joy is immense...until the mom bolts.

Can Head last 15 rounds as a single dad with a paltry income, scanty prospects, biting demons, and a "ball-and-chain" kid?

The tale is told by a worshipful youth who accompanies Head and his son every step of the way on a 10-year-long, three-way journey of struggles, missteps, love, and growth.

What other authors say:  

"This is a rollicking, big-hearted tale, full of laughter, bravery and unflinching humanity. The touch is light, but the questions are big: family, loyalty, art, and love are the rightful subjects of Sindell’s troupe of misfits and raconteurs, each of them a poet and each of them a pugilist too in this deeply funny and deeply felt novel." (Emily Kiernan, author of The Great Divide)   

"The Pugilist Poets of Venice is author Jon Sindell’s big fat juicy love letter to literature, Los Angeles and, most of all, love. Disguised as a novel about free-spirited parenting, boys becoming men and men becoming, well, grown-ups, The Pugilist pulls no punches. With prose that zings, swings and frequently sings, Sindell tells a tough yet tender tale of brazen heartbreak amid ’90s bohemian hipsters." (Tracy DeBrincat, author of Hollywood Buckaroo and Troglodyte)

"Funny, sad, relatable, and engrossing" (Stephen D. Gutierrez, American Book Award winner)  

"With unflinching honesty, humor and a keen eye for detail, Sindell brings unforgettable characters to life in all their flaws and virtues. Page after page, they kept surprising me; I couldn’t put the book down." (Martin McCaw, author of The Low Road, finalist in the International Book Awards)

©2019 Jon Sindell (P)2019 Jon Sindell

What listeners say about The Pugilist Poets of Venice

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Excellent story, excellent narrator!

This heartwarming story will take you on a roller coaster of emotions, and the characters will feel like old friends. Jon Sindell provides an excellent narration of his novel, as the sincerity, effort, and passion shine through with every word he reads.

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A Fantastic Listen

The Pugilist Poets of Venice pays homage to so many things - fatherhood, son-hood, the 60s, LA, San Francisco, poetry, music, families - the ones we come from, and especially the ones we create. Its exploration of the generational divides - boomer, Xer, millennial - is funny, touching, and tenderly clear-eyed. Jon Sindell writes his characters with precision and generosity. He is both unflinchingly honest, and unfailingly sympathetic; it is clear he loves them, despite and maybe because of their failings.

And well before the end of the book, so did I.

Hearing it read by the author himself is definitely a treat!

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A Big-Hearted Story and a Warm Voice

The Pugilist Poets of Venice is a funny, big-hearted story about characters who come to feel like old friends. Sindell has a way of using dialogue and description to portray realistic people and the relationships between them in all their messiness and beauty. His reading style is warm and expressive, vividly bringing these characters to life. Each character is fully formed, flawed, and fascinating. The dynamics between members of different generations are poignant and true; the reader longs for the 60's-flavored countercultural utopia that Head remains dedicated to creating in his own small way, while also relating to Robbie's need to define himself in ways that fit with the new landscape of his generation. As a fellow Gen-Xer, I found myself identifying most with Robbie, while also appreciating Head because he encapsulates so much of the influence of the 60s generation on ours. I could relate to Robbie's desire to embrace Head's idealism while also recognizing that it did not work in the reality of the economic and cultural landscape of the 90s. The novel is written in Sindell's characteristic sharp, concise prose, which sparkles with language play and humorous moments. There are many laugh-out-loud moments, and some cry-out-loud ones too (sometimes on the same page)! By the end, I felt like I had lived through this roller coaster of a decade with these charming, flawed characters. Highly recommended!

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Phenomenal Listen!

Great pastime!

So enthralling!

Highly recommend.

Captivating till very end.

No better way to spend I drive.

I always wished the commute was longer!