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Just Enough Liebling: Classic Work by the Legendary New Yorker Writer
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Just Enough Liebling: Classic Work by the Legendary New Yorker Writer

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4.18  ·  Rating Details ·  171 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
Abbott Joseph Liebling was one of the greatest of all New Yorker writers, a colorful figure who helped set the magazine's urbane tone and style. Just Enough Liebling gathers in one volume the vividest and most enjoyable of his pieces. Charles McGrath (in The New York Times Book Review) praised it as "a judicious sampling-a useful window on Liebling's vast body of writing a ...more
Paperback, 560 pages
Published October 5th 2005 by North Point Press (first published 2004)
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Rick
Aug 29, 2010 Rick rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
The dust jacket photo shows a middle-aged man, wide-shouldered with an avalanche of weight falling downward below the frame. He is bald, jowly, wearing round wire-rimmed glasses. He looks directly at the camera, his head turned slightly from a three-quarter angle to do so, a pen gripped like a thin bone in his mouth. Lillian Ross, a New Yorker colleague, took the photo. It’s exceptional. He looks wary, though pretend wary, serious but with a twinkle of self-mockery. He looks like what he was, a ...more
M. D.  Hudson
Feb 14, 2017 M. D. Hudson rated it really liked it
A. J. Liebling is one of those iconic tiny mummies from the New Yorker that everybody should read, so I’ve been told. Another $0.25 purchase at the Allen County Public Library discount shelf and I made my debut with “Just Enough Liebling.”

Now that I am almost through the fat thing, I have to say I had a good time. Liebling is a smart, ironic, quick-witted and absolutely sure-footed writer. Just what you want from a New Yorker writer. But he has definite limitations. He kind of covers the same t
...more
David
Dec 20, 2016 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes good writing and is interested in the times and topics covered
Recommended to David by: Just saw it at used book sale

Just finished Thurber's "The Years With Ross" and a re-read of Brendan Gill's "New Yorker" book and decided to dip into this.

Many articles spanning a long period (ending early 1960s). Sections on food, Paris, boxing, many nice pieces of his war correspondence (my favorite parts), three funny articles on Earl Long, several articles on Col. John R. Stingo (a Broadway character who amused Liebling), a nice reflection on Harold Ross, etc. Colorful language and figures of speech and droll insight on
...more
Gnarly Authenticity .
Sep 05, 2013 Gnarly Authenticity . rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2014
In Leibling's world, an Underwood is always "battered" and a Jewish tailor is invariably "little". He deals in stereotypes; and does so very well.

Like Joseph Mitchell, he's prone to obviously fabricated expository dialogue. Like Mitchell, he's also fascinated with gluttony. Lists of dishes and heroic feats of trenchermanship are a recurring theme in both authors--seafood for Mitchell and French cooking for Leibling.

In the background of his tales of petty promoters, prizefighters and charming al
...more
Bob
Mar 11, 2014 Bob rated it really liked it
This guy could tell a story. I mean REALLY tell a story. I enjoyed this book much more than I anticipated. The section entitled "The War and After" was my favorite, but every essay or excerpt had its interesting moments. Give the book a chance. Digest it in bits. Don't be afraid to let it sit unread for days at a time. Liebling's style could be rotund (the pieces on French food were a little much for me), and his allusions sometimes seem hopelessly obscure viewed from sixty-or-more years away (t ...more
Claudia
Jun 10, 2014 Claudia rated it liked it
Great reading mostly. Gets a little tiresome if read cover to cover...better to dip into.
GT
Dec 25, 2013 GT rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I can't remember how I came across this book, but like many others I own, I was probably browsing in the discount books section somewhere and this book, and author, intrigued me enough to lay out $5 or so. Subsequently it went up on my shelf and I didn't read it. When I'd see it there I'd look at it, leaf through it, put it back on my shelf and think, maybe someday...

Apparently that day came shortly after Christmas 2013...

At first I wasn't sure what I was in for. Several chapters on eating in ni
...more
Pat Falkner
Aug 04, 2010 Pat Falkner rated it liked it
A classic New Yorker writing about the funner parts of World War II, boxing, and Earl Long, among other subjects. The boxer that Cassius Clay boxed in his first New York fight, before he was Muhammad Ali, was from Tupelo, MS. Earl Long was governor of Louisiana, Huey's brother. Read about the racist way he helped black people get ahead in the 50's. Liebling quotes Long reporting about how mistakes have consequences: "My uncle got drunk and pulled a man out of bed and got in bed with the man's wi ...more
Brian Grover
Apr 12, 2016 Brian Grover rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
This book was a wedding present from my buddy RG, who loves these old New York writers. I like Liebling more than I like Joe Mitchell - he's funny, which helps with a lot of this material, which can run pretty dry (sadly, the stories about 1950s New York are the worst in this collection).

Really enjoyed his WWII pieces, as well as the stuff about Huey and Earl Long, but the whole book is full of entertaining dispatches. I'd never heard of Liebling before getting this book, it was a good gift!
Ramesh Prabhu
Jul 23, 2011 Ramesh Prabhu rated it it was amazing
A.J. Liebling is hailed as the first of the great New Yorker writers, a "colourful and tireless figure who helped set the magazine's urbane style".

It was in April 2010 that I finished reading Just Enough Liebling, an anthology of his articles from the New Yorker. Read these excerpts and you will get an insight into the ingredients of great writing: http://goo.gl/xkskS (The Reading Room)
Elizabeth
Nov 05, 2015 Elizabeth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of old school journalism
Excellent collection of one of the old "New Yorker" writers before the content of the magazine became so liberally smarmy and twee. Especially good is his experience aboard a Norwegian Tanker in WWII just as the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor occurred. In lighter moments he does a humorous take on a collection of petty grifters operating out of a building in NYC.
Edy
Nov 10, 2007 Edy added it
"I have known out-of-towners on newspapers whose primary urge toward journalism had been a consuming desire to escape from Iowa." (p 414)


He's a great writer, but a lot of the topics didn't really interest me. To echo a previous (albeit facetious) reviewer, "more than enough Liebling" for me.
Martha
Oct 20, 2015 Martha added it
Great war reporting and comments about food. If interested in boxing. I recommend this book. Also great descriptions of Huey Long and brother and Louisiana at that time...which I understand is little changed today, so could be helpful in understanding that strange land.
Tracy
Sep 22, 2011 Tracy rated it it was amazing
I just love this guy. I read this on the Kindle but wish I'd bought the real thing for easy access to my favorite essays. Look, when someone makes his voyage from England to the US in 1939 on a tanker really interesting, take note.
Teddy
Jul 30, 2007 Teddy rated it it was amazing
A.J. Liebling writes about food, boxing, WWII, con men, and food. It's awesome. The obits for Hearst and Theodore Dreiser are awesome too.
Ryan Williams
Dec 28, 2014 Ryan Williams rated it really liked it
WW2, food, Harold Ross, boxing, conmen and more from one of the great reporters. On par with his justly celebrated (if unjustly more celebrated) contemporary, Joseph Mitchell.
Malcolm Moore
Jul 11, 2011 Malcolm Moore rated it it was amazing
The food writing from Paris, and the piece on the Jollity building in New York, are the best writing I've ever read. Total delight.
Katie
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Aug 19, 2008
Mike Gabor
Mike Gabor rated it it was ok
May 25, 2012
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May 08, 2015
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M. Milner
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Jan 03, 2010
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Jun 25, 2013
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