Greg's Reviews > High Fidelity

High Fidelity by Nick Hornby
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's review
Jun 27, 2008

really liked it
Read in October, 2007

Rarely do I catch myself reading a book after I'd already seen the movie (mostly because I feel as if the movie TAKES something from the book while the book GIVES something to a movie, and thus the order should always be book first and movie second -- so that the book starts with the upper hand), but having enjoyed the movie so much I found myself craving more behind the story.

I wasn't disappointed. Biggest difference that I wasn't originally aware of was the location difference, which helped me ease into my decision to read the book because it was already so very different from the get-go. Many scenes between the two different forms of media are the same, if slightly shuffled, and I was very pleased to see that both have several unique scenarios that are have no parallel in its companion medium.

But enough about the comparisons between the book and the movie. I'll just say that they should be enjoyed together (though not at the same time) for a very satisfying overall experience.

Bottom line was that the book was highly enjoyable. It's always nice to read a quote or passage in a book that imparts some piece of wisdom you've never heard, but I personally think it's even more gratifying to read a quote or passage that perfectly puts into words some thought or feeling that you've had for years but have never been able to properly express for some reason. Hornby did this constantly throughout "High Fidelity."

Many of the experiences and emotions I've had as a young man (both as an individual entity and as part of a greater whole in relationships) I'd often found to be inexpressible despite my best efforts, so when I found myself reading such succinct expression of those up-to-that-point-nameless feelings, I found myself overjoyed that someone else gets it. And not just that someone gets it, but gets it probably better than I do. True EUREKA! moments throughout the whole book.

Guys should read it for the relief of knowing that they aren't alone in dealing with all this crap. And women should read it with an open mind and a sincere desire to get us and I guarantee they'll walk away much wiser than if they'd read all those "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus" stinkers.
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Beth Mantle The expression of the seemingly inexpressible is one of the delights of this book. I wouldn't go as far as to suggest that men will get one thing from this novel and women another. There are revelations and resonations (not a word, I know) regardless of gender.

And I broke your rule: I'm halfway through the book and tonight I watched the film. I do love John Cusack in the role of Rob (Fleming) Gordon (what is that about, BTW?). Despite the Americanised differences, the film did justice to the novel.

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