In a dreary seaside town in England, Annie loves Duncan -- or thinks she does, because she always has. Duncan loves Annie, but then, all of a sudden, he doesn''t anymore. So Annie stops loving Duncan, and starts getting her own life. She sparks an e-mail correspondence with Tucker Crowe, a reclusive Dylanesque singer-songwriter who stopped making music years ago and who is also Duncan''s greatest obsession. A surprising connection is forged . . .
From the Publisher:
Ending her relationship with a man who turns out to be in love with a reclusive singer, Annie initiates an e-mail friendship with the musician that reveals their mutual loneliness, his concerns about his young son, and his plans to release an acoustic version of his most successful album. (General fiction). By the E. M. Forster-winning author of About a Boy.
Nick Hornby's breakthrough novel HIGH FIDELITY riffed on pop culture and masculinity with compassion and humor, as his deeply personal characters juggle real-life responsibilities with all-consuming musical geekiness. He returns to the similar terrain with JULIET, NAKED. Annie has given her best to her relationship with Duncan, but finally she's had enough. There is not enough room in Duncan's life for her--all his focus is on his all-consuming obsession with Tucker Crowe, a has-been singer-songwriter. As Juliet moves on with her life, she develops her own relationship with Tucker. Through these three characters, Hornby explores with his particular attention to detail what it means to be a real music fan, as well as offering a unique portrait of a struggling musician. But with an autobiographical edge that can only come from his own life experiences, he also looks at the areas of life that his Peter Pan-like male characters seem so afraid of--parenthood, responsibility, and the joys and fulfillment that growing up can offer.
Born in London, educated at Cambridge, Nick Hornby wanted to be a screenwriter, became a journalist and English teacher, and finally emerged as a writer with his first book, FEVER PITCH (about his fanatical devotion to football) and his second, the novel HIGH FIDELITY. His next novel, ABOUT A BOY, became a best-seller and was made into a film. Hornby has an autistic son, Danny, and he and the boy's mother (now Hornby's ex-wife) have helped found a school, called TreeHouse, for autistic children, in London.
"Few can match the muted humor, lingering poignancy and depth with which Hornby...limns his forgivably human characters."
"Obviously, this is a must-read for Hornby's fans, but it also works as a surprisingly thoughtful complement to the piles of musician bios and memoirs." (starred review)
"In Hornby's fiction, music is never just about the music; among contemporary writers, only Jonathan Lethem has his sure sense for the way pop-cultural artefacts [sic] become entwined, for good or ill, with ordinary relationships; and in particular, how pop songs minister to deep needs while exposing all to many fresh ones."
- Bharat Tandon
"[Hornby] brings together a compelling, original cast in this sweet and sorrowful tale of rock 'n' roll and love on the rocks....A wise, witty, and bittersweet novel." (starred review)
- Allison Block
"Nobody captures the zealous devotion and bizarre intensity of amateur music snobs better. Yet Hornby's own writing on the subject...is marked by modesty and insight. He gently satirizes rockaphiles in a way that only endears him to them, and though this new novel will appeal to a broad audience for romantic comedy, anyone with a fading poster of Van Morrison will hum along, too."
- Ron Charles
"[I]n its diffident way JULIET, NAKED is as candid as the unplugged music on "Naked" It knows its characters too well to lie about them."
- Ron Charles