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Postcards from a Dead Girl

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3.2 of 5 stars 3.20  ·  rating details  ·  444 ratings  ·  87 reviews
Sid is going crazy . . .

A telemarketer at a travel agency, Sid is becoming unhinged and superneurotic. Lately he's been obsessed with car washes and mud baths. His hypochondria is driving his doctor sister mad. And it's all because of his ex-girlfriend, Zoe, who's sending him postcards from her European adventure, one that they were supposed to take together. It's all quit...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published February 16th 2010 by Harper Perennial
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Lori
Thanks to HarperPerennial for sending me this review copy of "Postcards From a Dead Girl" by Kirk Farber.

I was not really sure what to think when I first saw the cover of this novel - with it's lone man standing in an apartment window watching postcards rain down from the sky. But after reading the first few paragraphs, I knew I had a great little book in my hands.

I'm a sucker for a fucked up lead guy. And oh boy is Sid fucked up. Here's his deal: He currently works as a telemarketer for a trave...more
Megan C
Sometimes I found Sid to be really funny. Most of the time I found that I didn't actually know all that much about him. What was his room like? Why didn't he have any friends? The last one I was especially caught up on. There were literally zero mentions of friends ever. I found this troubling and it made him a much less likeable character, and considering how irresponsible he was over most things, I was mostly irritated with him.

Also, the timeline in this book just wasn't clear enough for me....more
Ron Heimbecher
In a very unusual way, it's fortunate that I've been ill for a few days. My to-read stack is at least a couple of dozen, and has been for months. I left my house for a few hours on Wednesday to see Kirk's launch signing at the venerable Tattered Cover in Lodo. (When I worked with the Denver International Film Festival, directors, writers, and actors from around the world wanted to visit the Tattered Cover in Cherry Creek.)

I brought the freshly signed copy home and started upstairs to put it on t...more
Katie Parker
I’ll admit, I decided to read this solely because Marc Johns did the book cover. Anything he collaborates on has to be awesome, right? Well, in this case, that turned out to be true.

The book is about a guy named Sid, who works as a telemarketer for Wanderlust, a travel agency where his overly enthusiastic boss drives him crazy. He lives alone in his childhood home with his dog Zero and constantly calls his sister Natalie, a doctor, to tell her that he thinks he has a brain tumor. In fact, he’s s...more
Jessi
Summary: A telemarketer at a travel agency, Sid is becoming unhinged and superneurotic. His hypochondria is driving his doctor sister mad. And it's all because his ex-girlfriend, Zoe, who's sending him postcards from her European adventure, one that they were supposed to take together. Sid needs to get over Zoe and find love again--even though Zoe, apparently, has no inclination to be gotten over.--From publisher's description.

First Line: The postcard is everything, but looks like nothing.

I felt...more
Debbie
I facilitate a bookclub at a public library. This wonderful book caused quite a stir with the group. The story is simple enough, once you finish the book that is. Sid, a damaged vacation telemarketer, is receiving postcards from Zoe. Zoe, his one time love, now absent in an unexplained way. Sid can't reach her but she reaches him with regular postcards from all around the world. Postcards all postmarked one year earlier. Who is sending the postcards, why won't Zoe answer her phone, who is the li...more
Jessica
At least it was quick read. Sid was slowly going crazy, and he started to drag me down that slippery slope with him.

The story was quirky, and at times amusing, but mostly it was unnerving. The reader is the sole person who has visibility to the depth of Sid's neurosis, and it seems as though there's no end in sight. He thinks Natalie wants to have him committed. I think it probably would have been a very good idea, early on.

The presence of his mom was an unexpected surprise, and one that I rathe...more
Linda
This is an entertaining read by a first-time author who is actually a colleague of mine at PPLD. Kirk is pretty understated in real life, although quite engaging, and that is exactly how I would characterize this book about a guy named Sid. Sid relaxes by taking himself and his car through the carwash again and again, sometimes with his dog, and by sprawling in the mud in his homemade spa in the backyard. I suffered with Sid and all of his humiliations; talking himself out of and into peace of m...more
Cheryl
Sid works as a telemarketer at a travel agency. His life gets turned upside down when he starts receiving postcards from his girlfriend, Zoe. Sid receives about a dozen. The postcards range from Amsterdam to Paris. Zoe doesn’t say much on the postcards other than the standard “Have a good time, wish you were here”. So now you would wonder, how can postcards cause so much uproar? It is because Zoe is dead! What does Zoe want from Sid? Sid decides to follow the trail of postcards from all over Eur...more
Sasha Martinez
It’s the story of Sid Higgins–quirky and awkward and funny and sad and witty and slightly off-kilter Sid Higgins–who starts getting, well, postcards from Zoe, his dead (?) girlfriend. [There's a question mark there, because as the story moves forward, there are several arguments (most in Sid's head) about the dubiousness of Zoe's death. Sometimes, she's just lost. Sometimes, she'd just walked away.] Add to the mix a loving yet bossy sister, a slew of post office workers, Sid’s mother haunting a...more
Katy
Reading this book made me sad. Sid was sad, and it was painful to know how troubled he was, that he had some fairly serious mental and emotional problems, and that while he was aware of his problems, he was reluctant to seek help that he very badly needed.

But reading this book also made me sad for myself. If Sid, who is somewhat emotionally and socially crippled, has the propensity to attract women and have relationships with them, why is it that I have so much difficulty dating? Interestingly,...more
Jenny (Reading Envy)
I picked this up when iBooks put some titles on sale for 99cents, and I'm glad I did! This was a quick read, but I was never quite sure I knew if the main character, Sid, was crazy or if the world around him was. (That question gets answered around the time he starts playing in the mud, really). His girlfriend is dead, and so are his parents, and he is working a telemarketing job, which would make anyone insane.

The older sister reminds me so much of the older sister character on Wilifred, down...more
Therese
I liked how Farber found the humor in Sid's unraveling; it was spot on. Depressed people who keep their sense of humor think like this, at least I did.

It was good, it really was. Intriguing, rhythmic...I really thought we were being set up for some twists or reveals or some sort of glorious denouement.

That's my only problem. The ending didn't honor the rest of the story. We climbed and climbed and then...we didn't jump off, we didn't float away, we didn't soar. We just stumbled and laid down a...more
Jenn
Kirk Farber has written a crazy little mystery surrounding, as the title states, postcards from a dead girl. But questions abound throughout the novel. Is she really dead? Are the postcards really from her? Is Sid, the main character, just bat-ass crazy?

Floating along on a sea of detached thoughts, Sid barely makes it through his days. Farber's use of short chapters and detached imagery establishes Sid's own thought processes. Sid tries to not think too much about any one thing and his thoughts...more
Sarah
Oh I just don't know with this book. On the one side I thought it was a neat story, nothing too deep but mostly quirky and absurd. On the other side though, I missed a lot of things. A real plot for example. The story goes on and on without real development in the story and minimal character development. Still I seemed to enjoy it quite a bit, so I just don't know how to rate this.
Laura Stone Johnson
This quirky story of difficulty in dealing with the end of a relationship reminded me of several young adult books. I suppose it's just the age of the protagonist that makes it an adult book. Disconsolate Sid Higgins is an endearing dysfunctional character we want to root for, and the mystery of the postcards will make for cult discussion groups. Good fun.
Similar YA books:
Someday This Pain Will be Useful to You - character’s troubled soul
Marcelo in the Real World – protagonist’s inability to dea...more
Trisha
I couldn't really connect with this book. The main character, Sid, just seemed really flat to me. While some of my questions were answered, I'm still left wondering what in the hell was up with the postcards?! The entire plot was one, giant dead-end and I felt duped into reading a novel with no purpose.
Kaleb
so we have this guy Sid who has seemingly lost 'it' - who else buys ten credits at the local automatic car wash (at $4.50 a round) and uses as many as they can before another patron comes along.. hello? and his missing ex sounds like a mess in her own right: "I'm cute.. you would miss me if I were dead", she said - at least once. and then there are the postcards that keep arriving, from all over the globe (Hoboken, Nice, Lyon..) - all postmarked from a year past - from the ex: Zoe.

someone is fu...more
Georgiann Hennelly
Sid is a telemarketer at a travel agency. His girlfriend recently died in a car accident and Sid survived. He can,t move forward with his life. And now he is recieving post cards from his dead girlfriend from her European vacation , the one they where supposed to take together.Its like he is stuck in limbo waiting for her to come back . On top of that Sid is a hypochondric and he is driving his doctor sister crazy with all his systems .She just wants him to let Zoe rest in peace and move forward...more
Dawn Berkbigler
Loved this book. Happenstance led me to this book when I went to a library I had not been in, ever. With this first visit brought a delightful book which I finished in less than 24 hours. It must have entered my life at the right moment because I connected with Sid and felt that his experience was mine, as well. Good timing. I won't give the synopsis but will say the conflicting realities and perceptions are often over-lapped and one can't tell the difference between the two. People are wacky an...more
Jessica
Sydney had a wonderful and beautiful girlfriend (who after many chapters we find out she’s dead) who is sending him postcards from around the world documenting her worldly adventures she wanted to have without him. Sydney is stuck in a lame job that he gets nothing out of and spends his time thinking of Zoe (the girl). I read the whole book. I kept reading to find out if he had lost his mind and he was maybe sending himself the postcards. I didn’t read all of it because it was thought provoking...more
T.
Postcards from a Dead Girl showed a lot of promise based on the conceit of the novel. Unfortunately, it can't live up to those expectations. There isn't quite an interesting enough of a plot to work as a good genre novel, and Sid, the main character, just isn't interesting enough to feel like good literary fiction. What you get is something that feels like a little bit of both that doesn't quite go far enough. Honestly, it's an average book that didn't really captivate me, but didn't annoy me en...more
Tatiana Campos
I don’t really know what to say about this book because I was left scratching my head towards the end…But basically, Sid (the main character) is crazy. He’s a bit whiny, and self-centered, and at times I found him very unlikable.

The humor in this book is tiny bit dark I suppose, but at the same time…not. It’s really hard to explain this story, it’s very odd, and original.

I don’t know if I’ll be re-reading this or not…If I do it’ll be to see if the second go around will make more sense of the end...more
Shannon
How often do you get to read quirky stories about people inured in their own inner stories...written by people you know?

Kirk's story is just fun, and though the narrative is very punchy that sometimes makes the whole thing feel like the set up for a joke (didja hear the one about the guy who couldn't get enough of car washes?), it is tinged with a realistic sadness that is driving the protagonist character (Sid) to distraction, and morbid distraction at that.

And besides, Kirk's a great guy. Go r...more
Bree (AnotherLookBook)
From the description and opening chapters, I think I was expecting something slightly more funny/neurotic and a little less certifiable/neurotic. All the same, I liked the tone, though wished the main mystery (the postcards) could have been resolved better. Bit anti-climactic as it was.

Reminded me a bit of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. And that's definitely a compliment.

Reviews of life-changing vintage fiction you've never even heard of: www.Anotherlookbook.com
Jennifer Doerr
A tender and thought-provoking coming-of-age story about a young man, Syd, who keeps receiving European/Caribbean postcards from his ex-girlfriend, who may or may not be dead. Syd's life unfolds on the page with dark humor and a desperate playfullness that endear the reader to him. I was pleased that the writer did not submerge him into the realm of pathetic. A+ for that! His relationship with the local postman and his sister are true-to-life and funny. This was an enjoyable book to read.
Marie
The book flowed in the direction that I thought it would--didn't have any surprises. Very short chpaters which made it easy to read but too easy to lay stop quickly and lay the book down for awhile. I did think it was truthful in interpreting a person who went thorugh a traumatic experience. It was interesting how the character would perceive things, hear things, and react to things that may not necessarily be actually happening in reality. I thought there was truth in that.
Gretchen Paulson
This book was an easy read. The chapters are short (and they all start on the right hand page, I dig this) and this makes the book read faster. The book starts out with Sid having some mental issues and it seems like it took awhile to get to the reason why and why he was doing what he was doing. The book kept you guessing as to what had actually happened to him to make him act the way he is. I felt that this book was well written and would look for another book by Kirk Farber.
Audra (Unabridged Chick)
This addictive odd book grabbed me from the first line. The chapters are brief but our narrator, Sid, is warm, interesting, neurotic, funny and ultimately, very likable. I cared about his crazy. This book could have easily gone into cloyingly quirky but instead kept it's slightly melancholy edge. There's real sadness, heartache, and pain in Sid's adventure and I was an eager companion the entire way.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book via GoodReads First Reads giveaway.
Jessica
This story was quirky and cute. The main character brings a whole new meaning to the term "neurotic" (he tries to build a mud spa in his back yard, for example). The story is well written and enjoyable, even a little dark. Not every mystery is explained, which is a bit frustrating, but I think also part of the point. The characters are realistic and interesting, including the dog, Zero. I really look forward to reading other works by Farber.
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Kirk Farber's first novel, POSTCARDS FROM A DEAD GIRL, was published by Harper Perennial.

*Indie Next Selection
*Colorado Book Award Winner

"A witty, tormented hero surrounded by fascinating, compassionate supporting characters makes this slender debut a surprisingly compulsive read."
- Kirkus Reviews

"Kirk Farber's voice is riddled with irreverence and dark humor; his tone is laugh-out-loud funny one...more
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“...so much has been laid on the sunset—heavy-handed metaphors, sentimental music. Everyone’s always walking into them, and that is some very intense light. Maybe that’s where the term “love is blind” comes from, because so many people are walking into sunsets, burning out their corneas.” 2 likes
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