Nick Hornby

Despite having devoured all the long fiction titles in Nick Hornby’s rather slim bibliography and enjoyed the music freak oriented 31 Songs, I’ve ended up concluding there’s not much point in chasing down the short stories (hard to find, I guess) and the collected journalism in the Non-Fiction section. 

I’ve glanced at the odd piece here and there, and have come to the conclusion that he’s at his best in long form where he can explore the quirks of the characters and the situations they end up entangled in. He’s best, I think, with relatively aimless and/or obsessive blokes–music freak Rob in High Fidelity, Will Freeman in About a Boy,and absolutely skewers the obsessive fan in Juliet, Naked. The female character, to me don’t work quite as well (and, yes, it’s probably a bloke thing).

While my reactions to what I’ve read have varied whenever there’s a new Hornby novel out it’ll be grabbed and devoured in pretty short order.

He also makes a pretty fair fist of the lyric writer bit, if his collaboration with American singer/songwriter Ben Folds (Lonely Avenue) is anything to go by,


High Fidelity (1995)

About a Boy (1998)

How to Be Good (2001)

A Long Way Down (2005)

Slam (2007)

Juliet, Naked (2009)

Short Stories

Faith (1998)

Not a Star (2000)

Nipple Jesus (2002)

Otherwise Pandemonium (2005)


Fever Pitch (1992)

31 Songs (2003)

The Polysyllabic Spree (2004)

Housekeeping vs. the Dirt (2006)

Shakespeare Wrote for Money (2008)

© Ian Hughes 2012