Nick Hornby


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Nick Hornby by N.A. Puzanova

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Nick Hornby ( 1957- ) Nick Hornby published the following best-selling novels: Fever Pitch (1992) William Hill Sports book of the year Award. His book was adapted for film twice, in 1997 and 2005. High Fidelity (1995) - made into a film in 2000 starring John Cusack. About a boy (1998) – in 2002 was made into a film with Hugh Grant.

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How to be good (2001) - explores contemporary morals, marriage and parenthood. It won the WH Smith award for Fiction in 2002. A Long way down (2005) Non-fiction: Fever Pitch 31 Songs The Polysyllabic Spree Housekeeping vs. the Dirt

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As a young boy Hornby heard that his idol George Best celebrated his new wealth by presenting his mother with a ’Fish and chip’ restaurant. He decided to do the same should he ever make a success. And so when his books were published he gave his mother such a present. When he wrote his book “About a boy” film companies offered him 3 million bid.

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Just in 5 years Hornby has transformed himself from well- respected book reviewer to the most successful British author of his generation. And that’s only half the story. His influence has been so far-reaching on any number of cultural levels that it almost demands some kind of sociological study: the effect of Nick Hornby on new England.

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Fever Pitch. His first book Fever Pitch was a novel-autobiography: a life viewed through the prisms of football. It spawned so many male imitators - that relieved their obsessions in largely monotonous detail - that a whole new non-fiction sub-genre was born: the young male confessional.

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The book also was responsible for reawakening the country’s love affair with football, intellectualizing sport, popularizing nostalgia. Nick Hornby is very much interested in Football and he has always been an Arsenal fan.

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Fever Pitch. In his book he writes how it all started in his life: parents separated, a Sunday father gave him a ticket to a football match and his whole live became dependant on it (he was always thinking about football even when he was with his girlfriend).

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Hornby at one point in his life became obsessed with football and had to go through therapy. The book was adapted for film twice, in 1997 and 2005. This book is about losing in all senses. F.P. was for a long time on the bestseller list.

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High Fidelity Hornby’s debut novel High Fidelity was also celebrated and judged using a set of criteria that went way beyond the normal literary bounds. Hornby’s fiction was discussed as a real-life guide for women to the flawed male psyche.

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People talked about Hornby as a favorite pop star: with a sentimental respect. From practically nowhere he had arrived to achieve that most delicate and difficult of arts - a literary writer with mass appeal. He was in short, a phenomenon.

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Life Facts However, very few would have predicted it. The wilderness years were rather long in his life. In the 80s, there was a lot of wondering in the family if he was ever going to won a house or even an overcoat. His friends agree that he cut something of a miserable figure for a number of years.

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N.Hornby studied in Jesus College, Cambridge and graduated with an English degree. But he had a far form classical route to the world of belles letters. First stop was a petrol station in Great Shelford. “He was working inside - a typical white-collar job”. Then he took 2 years of teacher-training at Kingston polytechnic and then he found a job teaching English at Park Side comprehensive in Cambridge.

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He was insecure and shy. Later he moved to London. It was a period of isolation and disappointment. He was writing TV plays - ‘I don’t know what they were and where they went” He taught English to Italians. He also found a job working as a sort of social fixer for the industrial giant Samsung, arranging visits to greyhound races for Korean workers.

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Eventually Hornby overcame his chronic lack of confidence and wrote to the Literary Review. He became known as a critic whose reviews always reflected something of himself. He always went around in his polo shirt and leather jacket imageless image - not the one to inspire a generation ‘Now you walk down the street and everybody looks like Nick Horny – he became a cultural icon’.

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As it turned out, it was Hornby’s sense of being a loner, his very outside status, that enabled him to establish himself so firmly in mainstream consciousness. When it occurred to him to write an autobiography about life and football, people around him did not trust that it would be any kind of success. Hundreds of thousand of copies, stage play, a feature film and an awful lot of money later probably have reassured them.

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All this fame has not changed him. The only thing changed is his self-confidence. He now knows what he is about. In his sister’s opinion “Nick is a kid. His interests are football , CDs and television. He still is not developed in some ways but, hey, look, he is a millionaire”.

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