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Preview — The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach
The Art of Fielding
Henry's fight against self-doubt threatens to ruin his future. College president Guert Affenlight, a longtime bachelor, has fallen unexpectedly ...more
The storyline revolves around five characters and readers shouldn't be misled into thinking, as the inside cover description seems to imply, that Henry is the star and the four other cha ...more
I wanted to like it, I did. I like books that take place in college. I like baseball. I like baseball metaphors even more. but it felt like a book that took 10 years to write and not in a good way. Characters that I imagine ...more
It took a little while for me to become engaged because of the slump, but things soon clicked. The main protagonist, Henry Skrimshander, is a young baseball player and college student. His bible, a beat up book called The Art of Fielding, is full of philosophy and practical pointers on how to become the best player ...more
While reading it, I couldn't help but reflect upon and compare this novel to The Marriage Plot. Both are about college-aged kids (though set in different decades); mental illness is an element in both; and while the love triangle in the Jeffrey Eugenides novel is paramount, the one here (which is sort of (though not really) a love triangle) is more subtle and more realistically portrayed. (I almost want to say ...more
Number 1) Pure jealousy. Harbach got paid like a bajillion dollars for his very first novel. I was paid slightly less than that. Okay, a lot less than that.
Number 2) I don't like n+1 magazine, of which he is the co-founder. I find it pretentious and boring. I would honestly rather read Cat Fancy.
Number 3) Harbach wrote an article about MFA vs. New York writers that was, in a word, uber-douchy. And anyone who we ...more
Baseball is, without a doubt, kinda sorta, um... dull. But with near-perfect (actually more perfect than near-perfect) "The Art of Fielding," the passion in the hearts of five individuals will likewise light a passion within the impressionable reader. I am not kidding. I LOVE this novel. I was convinced that "The Marriage Plot", a kindred book-- same time, same themes, same environment-- by Eugenides was the definitive college novel ...more
100 pages in and the author has already *twice* withheld information from the reader which would be apparent to the character. Is there a name for this?
The first time it's dialogue overheard by a character, dialogue which the reader is meant to mistake for sex when in fact it's two people lifting weights. But the character is outside the weight room, so there's no chance that /he/ would think it's sexual.
The next occurrence: one character is straining for a glimpse of another, wor ...more
Without divulging any secrets, I'll just say.....the novel intertwines friendships and relationships among five flawed characters who struggle to find their way in life and follow their dreams.
About Baseball: There 'is' baseball in this book. So, for those people who really do not like baseball 'at all' ---(but are still open to reading this GEM of a story) ---you might surprise yourself and expand your interest in the game itself. (at least grow to respect the game -the players -and the *Art-of-being-on-a-Team*).
What else is this book about 'besides' Baseball? Life--friendships--all types of relationships --(male bonding at i ...more
This is one of those ...more
Part baseball book, part campus tale, and part Aspiring Great American Novel, Chad Harbach’s The Art Of Fielding is one of those highly readable, absorbing tomes that creates an entire fictional world you believe in and want to spend lots of time in.
Naturally gifted shortstop Henry Skrimshander (see note about names below) is discovered and recruited to Westish College, a small liberal arts school in Wisconsin on the western shore of Lake ...more
I've finished the book. I was a little wrong about how the book would end, I think I liked the book more because of the way it wrapped up than I expected to. I gave it an extra star. It is a pretty good book, not a great book, there are problems with it, some of the characters could be developed a bit more in places and some of the middle part of the book could have probably been reworked a little bit to make it not feel like a slog for a little bit, but with the ...more
“We secretly believe that the outcome of the game depends on us, even when we're only watching - on the way we breathe in, the way we breathe out, the T-shirt we wear, whether we close our eyes as the pitch leaves the pitcher's hand and heads toward Schwartz.”
A book that is more about the people within it - their lives over the span of a few year's time, in this place called Westish College, and a game that can be said to transcend itself - begins and ends on the field. When I finished, I th ...more
I'm sure there are others out there, a secret brotherhood of ivy-loving, two-seamer fetishists, lurking in dank hallways dreaming about spring and middle ...more
This novel scorns both logic and reality. Near its opening lies one of the most absurd scenes in "serious" fiction:
Owen, a college baseball player, reads French literature in the dugout as he's about to go on-deck to bat in the game then lustily hits a sacrifice fly after which he swoons over the opposing pitcher.
C'mon, gimme a break! Anyone who has competed in sports (from 10 years o ...more
The character names may be a bit preposterous, and the main character rather thin and forgettable in the e ...more
Henry Skrimshander is a scrawny, aspiring baseball player whose effortless talent during a summer league game attracts the attention of Mike Schwartz, an athlete at Westish College, located on the shores of Lake Michigan. Mike gets Henry enrolled at Westish a ...more
None of the normal caveats—Franzen comparisons, n+1, a story of privilege, another white male penning Americana—takes away from the highlights of this book: its warmth, breadth, sense of control, poetry, and its many engaging arcs. I was reading other books while I read this one and I kept discarding them because how can you read YA when “The Art of Fielding” is waiting to resolve itself? I suppose that could be seen as a commentary on the other books I was rotat ...more
I have always thought about what poem, or story to have read at my funeral???....after reading this book,you might figure out what I have decided to have read at my funeral.....no rush on that event....but this book inspire ...more
We live by the Skrimmer, we die by the Skrimmer.
I absolutely adored this novel!
I read the tag line for the book and knew it would be up my alley. Then I found out that it was about baseball and I got a little apprehensive. I'm not a sporty person in the slightest. I never had an aptitude for sports and so have never taken an interest in them. Then there's the small matter of I have no clue about baseball. I live ...more
I liked Chad Harbach's vaunted debut novel 'The Art of Fielding'. It's a character driven, baseball-metaphor-for-life piece, set at a small college in northern Wisconsin. If you're not a baseball fan though, don't let that dissuade you from picking this one up.
There's much to like. Harbach has a smooth, easy style thats very engaging, his characters are well-drawn and you find yourself almost cheering for this novel to be great. Jonathan Franzen described it as' perfect'
Its not perfect of c ...more
|Reading 1001: The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach||4||19||Jul 31, 2020 06:05PM|
|did this book capture you? It did me.||43||352||Jan 22, 2017 02:14PM|
|Around the World ...: Discussion for The Art of Fielding||9||50||Jun 05, 2015 12:41PM|
|Henry and Mike's relationship||7||200||Apr 15, 2015 04:05AM|