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The Quitter

(American Splendor)

3.60  ·  Rating details ·  1,395 ratings  ·  141 reviews
""Pekar's most poignant and satisfying effort to date."--THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW"Dean Haspiel. . . .performs with virtuoso flair in THE QUITTER"--THE NEW YORKER"Brutally honest."--ROLLING STONE★"A searingly honest memoir. . . . Pekar's work dignifies the struggle of the average man."--PUBLISHERS WEEKLY, starred In this virtuoso graphic novel, Harvey Pekar -- whose A ...more
Paperback, 104 pages
Published September 6th 2006 by Vertigo (first published 2005)
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Showing 1-30
3.60  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,395 ratings  ·  141 reviews

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Jan 15, 2017 rated it it was ok
For once, a Pekar offering that leaves me tepid. Tragic. Having read a not insignificant portion of his autobiographical American Splendor comics, this was bound to happen – I was dreading the moment for some time - since inevitably some overlap will occur at some point. So here we are.

The premise isn’t half-bad though, with Pekar deciding to go back to his childhood ( a period in his life he previously hadn’t examined as much). The actual execution though, leaves much to be desired. It’s basica
Jul 10, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Sarah M. and Ben E.
Generally, I have a very sophisticated system for choosing the graphic novels/comics I read. It goes like this: I bring my kids to the library, peruse the kids section with them for a bit, do a little "mommy reads to her daughter" show at the tinny round table by the window (that is a stupidly designed to be adorable for kids but not smartly designed to be accommodating for the adults that almost always sit with the kids) and then I ditch them while I quickly scan the cooking/gardening/graphic n ...more
Sooraya Evans
Jul 19, 2017 rated it did not like it
Probably one of the most boring auto-bios I have ever read.
As the title suggests, the book snapshots the author's life, quitting from one thing to the next.
Nothing special really happens.
In the end, he fears how folks will like his work.
Here's a tip: if you had an uninteresting life, don't write about it.
Making it into a graphic novel doesn't really help.
Eli Bishop
Oct 13, 2007 rated it liked it
Shelves: comics
Pekar has been writing about his life for so long that it's hard to read a new piece of his on its own terms - if there's a gap, you fill it in with what you already know. And he's always used a lot of gaps, writing about little moments here and there; he'd talk at length often enough, but it was like a tour guide who might stop at any moment and let you just watch things go by for a while. His one long book, Our Cancer Year , had more or less the same rhythm, and it held together because of t ...more
May 23, 2009 rated it really liked it
Ever since I saw the film, American Splendor, I have been a big fan of Harvey Pekar. I'm not sure how I heard about The Quitter since it is not new (the copyright date is 2005).

If you like Pekar's other stuff: American Splendor or Our Cancer Year, you'll probably enjoy The Quitter.

Like his other works, The Quitter is autobiographical. The Quitter begins with Pekar's childhood and takes you up through his first jobs after high school and his life before American Splendor began. It can be painful,
Oct 08, 2008 rated it liked it
This was our penultimate entry in the library's Jewish literature discussion group. Honestly, I would've preferred one of the American Splendor collections, but seeing as I'm a hired hand---unpaid, at that---I go with the flow. The Quitter has plenty of the misanthropy one expects from Pekar since he began self-publishing his comics in 1976. It's the most novelistic of his autobiographies, however, eschewing the slice-of-quotidian bafflement approach of AS for a coming-of-age plot in which we fo ...more
Jul 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
This is the first hardback graphic novel I've read. The late Harvey Pekar's American Splendor mantra was "ordinary life is pretty complex stuff." So is ordinary growing up. So was Harvey Pekar. That may explain the appeal of Harvey Pekar's observational art, which is pretty much a running narrative of his lifelong struggle to stack Wednesday on top of Tuesday. It has a raw, unprocessed quality to it -- which evokes a flash of recognition even from a reader whose life's circumstances were differe ...more
Apr 26, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bakpao-keju
Biasanya kalo baca biografi seseorang itu aku ada 2 rute :

1. Aku tertarik sama orang itu dan penasaran pengen tau kisah hidupnya, bahkan kejadian yang paling remeh sekalipun.
2. Aku belum tau siapa orang itu, tapi setelah baca jadi tertarik dengan kisahnya dan juga pada orang itu sendiri.

Ini pengalaman baru...aku sebelumnya ga tau siapa itu Harvey Pekar, dan nyoba baca kisah kehidupan yang, menurut blurp-nya, "indah dan lucu" itu... aku (; ̄Д ̄) Indah? Lucu?? Aku kira aku termasuk orang yang gampan
Todd N
Oct 19, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: library
Read this at the library when I probably should have been working. That's what happens when I sit too close to the graphic novel section.

I felt worse for Cleveland losing Harvey Pekar this July than LeBron James's announcement a few days earlier, and when I read the sad news I made a mental note to pick up a copy of The Quitter because I knew it covered parts of his life not covered in his other comics.

This is Mr. Pekar's memoir covering the time from his birth to Polish immigrants to his famous
Michael Neno
Nov 11, 2014 rated it really liked it
The Quitter is actually a story of resilience. One of the last stories autobiographical comics pioneer Harvey Pekar wrote, it covers his early, post WWII years as a son of Polish immigrants living in Cleveland. Illustrated by Dean Haspiel, The Quitter is, typically, brutally honest.

To an extent not previously explored, Pekar was a fighter and bully in his youth, resorting to violence as a means of earning respect he wasn't otherwise getting from his peers, with whom he didn't fit in. He also had
Jo Bennie
Aug 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: p
Pekar is one of the giants of American comic writing and in this book expressively drawn in monochrome by Dean Haspel you can see why. This is Pekar's autobiography of his younger years and he is relentlessly brutal and honest about his own shortcomings, in particular his inability to keep going with any task when faced with being less than perfect and not receiving adultation. It is a tendency all of us have and dealing with failure is an essential part of character growth and Pekar is merciles ...more
Kevin O'leary
Nov 03, 2014 rated it liked it
The book Quitter by Harvey Pekar in my opinion was an interesting read. It's goes through his life as a boy whose parents are Jewish immigrants. It was a battle for him through the early stages getting in fights with kids at school and his parents. I would recommend this if you like to read autobiographical books.
Joey Diamond
Jul 27, 2009 rated it did not like it
Shelves: comix
Blargh. God this was a boring autobio. I thought I loved Harvey Pekar and his messed up ways but the more he goes on about how miserable and boring his life is... well the more boring it is. No insights, no light and shade, no nuffin. He's depressed, and depressing.
Benjamin Chandler
Mar 22, 2009 rated it it was ok
Harvey Pekar's autobiography left me wanting more from it. It just kind of runs down events in his life, but leaves out anything charming or interesting. Essentially, it's a series of fist fights and job losses.
Mar 31, 2009 rated it did not like it
Just awful. Redundant and uninspired.

Caption: "...after several months, it happened. I was laid off."
Thought bubble: "Oh, no, I've been laid off."

Lateef Amodu
This is an autobiographical graphic novel about the comic book writer, Harvey Pekar. He details his life as a young boy growing up in Cleaveland, with his Jewish-Polish family. Throughout the book he talks about his various jobs. His insecurities. His young violent period as a street fighter. His bouts with sports in high school. He covers his early adulthood trying out the navy and going to college. He also details his relationship with his parents and other family. The artwork is not amazing, ...more
Dec 09, 2018 rated it liked it
Harvey Pekarin lapsuusmuistelo The Quitter lähestyy aihettaan Pekarin tyyliin omaelämänkerrallisesti, mutta kauhean syvälle ei kirjassa päästä. Kerronta pohjaa enimmäkseen Pekarin tekstiin, jota piirrokset lähinnä kuvittavat. Lopputulos on hieman vaisu katsaus epävarman ja psyykkisesti epävakaan Pekarin nuoruuteen. Katutappelut ja epäonnistumiset opiskeluissa ja naisten kanssa seuraavat toisiaan kun Pekar haahuilee työstä ja opiskelupaikasta toiseen. Lohtua elämään tuovat jazz-musiikki ja taitel ...more
Mar 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: loeg-archives
Although it was very good, I prefer the shorter, tighter, laser-focused American Splendor stories. The Quitter is a great overview of Pekar's life, the anxieties that he (and we) faced, and a look at some of the cultural, economic and social circumstances that created the Harvey Pekar that we know via his comics. But the classic Splendor stories, despite their brevity, hit with more depth than The Quitter was able to muster.

Still, it was pretty enjoyable. Harvey's conversational captions make th
Wilde Sky
Oct 21, 2018 rated it liked it
In this graphic auto-biography a man recounts his early life and initial efforts at writing.

I found this book quite bleak, the basic point seems to be life is short so get on with what you want to do but don’t mess around at work. But I must admit that I’d never heard of this author or his ‘American Splendor’ series - so I am probably not the target audience for this book.
May 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I never expected to read a comic in a college Engish glass, so this one was definitely a pleasant surprise. It's a great comic. Pekar does a wonderful job of telling his story, so much so that I found myself very frustrated with him for being a quitter in the first place. Overall, a very easy and wonderful read. :)
Feb 07, 2018 rated it liked it
Harvey Pekar, I so appreciate your self awareness. But all I could think while reading this was “I wish someone had prescribed you Lexapro.”
Jun 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics-2017
Oct 21, 2018 rated it liked it
Maybe 3.5. IMO worth reading if borrowed from the library. I would have found his story more interesting if he'd gotten into reasons why he kept quitting but I guess that's not his style
Haris Quds
Jun 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really like how he tell his life story. It makes me mad of his past and his quitting habbit 😐
Neil Vanderwerf
Feb 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
A memoir of our favourite anti-hero in the ongoing battle of life, Harvey Pekar. Well written and the illustrations are fantastic.
Ariel Hess
Jul 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book takes you through the challenges of a quitter. The main character struggles to find a job that suits him and struggles to fit in.
Mike Aragona
Mar 23, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: all
It's a little hard to believe it's taken me this long to get to Harvey Pekar and Dean Haspiel's THE QUITTER, especially after all the hyping I've done of this project while it was still in development. (But then again, what with the projects I was working on during the last months, it's not that incredible to believe I was too busy :)) I wish I could say it was worth the wait, unfortunately.[return][return]Sometimes I feel like I'm one of the very few who have not read any of Pekar's earlier wor ...more
Sep 10, 2011 rated it it was ok
Category: Books
Genre: Comics & Graphic Novels
Author: Harvey Pekar
Gw belum pernah dengar nama Harvey Pekar sebelumnya. Tapi begitu gw melihat cover buku ini, gw langsung tertarik banget! Selain itu, alasan lainnya gw beli buku ini adalah karena lagi diskon. Makanya gw beli deh, hehehe...

Sekilas info:
Wahai pecinta buku, sering-seringlah ke Gramedia Grand Indonesia. Soalnya di sana ada tumpukan khusus untuk buku-buku yang didiskon. Harga buku ini cuma 15 ribu rupiah saja. Sekian sekilas info.

Feb 05, 2010 rated it liked it
Plot Summary:
I've never read a book quite like this one. It's a graphic novel that tells the life story of Harvey Pekar, author and narrator of "The Quitter." He is an average guy who constantly feels like a failure, no matter what he attempts. As a Jewish kid growing up in troubled and sometimes violent neighborhoods, he gets into physical fights as a way to defend and improve his self-image. He develops another habit at an early age: quitting anything in which he does not immediately succeed.
Jon Purkis
Apr 16, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: graphic-novels
Harvey Pekar in this book is a hard character to empathise with, he is simultaneously a loser and a bully. He doesn't really explain the origins of why he acts like he does, just that he does. He isn't an unlucky man or a neglected child, it just seems to be his own foolish decision making and immaturity that leads him to failure. Of course, that in itself is his problem, and I'm sure he deserves sympathy, I just found it hard to give it.

The book is a frustrating read, he brushes over the detai
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Harvey Lawrence Pekar was an American underground comic book writer best known for his autobiographical American Splendor series.

In 2003, the series inspired a critically acclaimed film adaptation of the same name.

Other books in the series

American Splendor (1 - 10 of 31 books)
  • American Splendor, #1
  • American Splendor, #2
  • American Splendor, #3
  • American Splendor, #4
  • American Splendor, #5
  • American Splendor, #6
  • American Splendor, #7
  • American Splendor, #8
  • American Splendor, #9
  • American Splendor, #10
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“My parents' work ethic amazed me. How could they put in such long hours, day after day?
Part of the reason was to keep the family going - to keep me going. I realized that, although we had different values derived from different cultures and wouldn't agree on certain issues, they were good people, incredible people, and I loved and respected them.”
More quotes…