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The Everlasting Story of Nory [Englisch] [Taschenbuch]

Nicholson Baker
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30. März 1999
Our supreme fabulist of the ordinary now turns his attention on a 9-year-old American girl and produces a novel as enchantingly idiosyncratic as any he has written. Nory Winslow wants to be a dentist or a designer of pop-up books. She likes telling stories and inventing dolls. She has nightmares about teeth, which may explain her career choice. She is going to school in England, where she is mocked for her accent and her friendship with an unpopular girl, and she has made it through the year without crying.

Nicholson Baker follows Nory as she interacts with her parents and peers, thinks about God and death-watch beetles, and dreams of cows with pointed teeth. In this precocious child he gives us a heroine as canny and as whimsical as Lewis Carroll's Alice and evokes childhood in all its luminous weirdness.


  • Taschenbuch: 240 Seiten
  • Verlag: Vintage (30. März 1999)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0679763759
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679763758
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 1,7 x 12,9 x 20,5 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 3.2 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (19 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 290.339 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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Sex and the adult cerebellum have tended to be Nicholson Baker's cherished subjects, and not necessarily in that order. In The Everlasting Story of Nory, however, he turns his literary microscopy in an entirely new direction, exploring the consciousness of a child. Nory, we are told, "was a nine-year-old girl from America with straight brown bangs and brown eyes. She was interested in dentistry or being a paper engineer when she grew up." This future dentist or paper engineer is also ensconced for a year in the English town of Threll, where her family is taking a sabbatical from life in Palo Alto.

Baker's novel is endearing, entertaining, and most of all, accurate. The author recognizes that an authentic nine-year-old is incapable of long, intricate narratives, so he divides Nory's story into short (and comically abrupt) chapters. He never credits Nory with precocious wisdom or insight. Instead, Baker concentrates on exactly how a nine-year-old mind works. There is, for instance, that wonderful literalism, which subjects a cliché to strict, heartbreaking scrutiny: "Nory suspected that the straw that broke the camel's back was an unsensible idea anyway, because first of all, stop and think of that poor camel. How could it happen? Doesn't he have something to say about the situation? Also, camels' backs are pretty strong things. If you've ridden on them, you know that they can support at least two people, if not three."

Nory slowly makes friends at school, where she's exposed to the usual level of childish cruelty. She fills us in on her family and plays with her kid brother, Frank (a.k.a. Littleguy). And for a large portion of the book she regales us with stories, which are short on narrative logic and long on amusing malapropisms. But this compulsive teller of tales worries about how to keep her material straight in her head: "You live your life always in the present. And even in the present, this day, dozens and hundreds of tiny things happen, so many that by the end of the day you can't make a list of them. You lose track of them unless something reminds you." No Nicholson Baker fan can read that rather touching thought without thinking of The Mezzanine and Room Temperature--novels in which the author seemed intent on recording precisely those "dozens and hundreds" of minuscule events. The Everlasting Story of Nory, then, is partially a meditation on what lasts, and what doesn't. "You can't mummify a nice memory in someone's head," Nory announces. You can, however, keep one alive, as Baker has done in this deeply charming and delightful book. --James Marcus -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Gebundene Ausgabe .


"Baker has created a world in which imagination still gets the better of its new roommate, reason. . . .  [The Everlasting Story of Nory is] a map of the 9-year-old mind, drawn perfectly to scale."  --Daily News

"Baker turn[s] his celebrated powers. . .on the strange inner life of an American girl. . . .  Nory is as large as life and twice as
natural." --The New York Times Book Review

"Thoughtful and daft, sure-footed and tentative. . . . [The Everlasting Story of Nory is] pitch-perfect."  --The Wall Street Journal

"Tender, insightful, and hilarious." --Harper's Bazaar

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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen
1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen it was kewl! 11. Juni 1999
Von Ein Kunde
"The Everlasting Story Of Nory" In the novel, The Everlasting Story Of Nory, Nicholson Baker tells you the many different stories of the life of an eleven year old girl named Nory. The novel is fiction but in some scenes it seems as if it were not a story that was made up out of a person's imagination. There are many scenes where the young girl, Nory, talks about what she wants to do when she grew old. At an early age she decided that she wanted to become either an orthodontist or a popup book producer. She chose these because she loved the many different designs on her friends' retainers and she really liked to read and make her own popup books. At about the age of 9 her parents decided to move to England and she then thought if she did become an orthodontist she would make a fortune because of many of the people having horrible teeth. As she attended school in England she met a young girl who was very nice but nobody seemed to be very fond of her. For some unapparent reason the young girl, Pamela, was always picked on by her fellow classmates. Later in the novel the other people in Nory's grade level, who were about the same age as her told her not to be friends with Pamela because she wouldn't be very popular if she did. But Nory ignored this and was brave even when she was picked on and she always stood up for Pamela. At the end of the novel we find out that people begin to accept Pamela as a normal human being and it wasn't a bad thing to be her friend. One of the main strengths of this book is that it uses a wide range of vocabulary that is not used in American English too commonly. Lesen Sie weiter... ›
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5.0 von 5 Sternen The colorful wisdom of Nory. 24. Juli 1998
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Fans of Nicholson Baker will probably be disappointed to find that this book containss aboslutely nothing about sex! The Everlasting Story of Nory is more akin to Madeline than The Feramata, because it is a story about dreaming, wisdom and creativity in the world of 9 year old kids.
The Everlasting Story of Nory is a refreshing reminder of how important it is to stay creative, young, and open minded. Baker documents the life of Eleanor (Nory) Winslow, a nine year old American girl who is spending a semester at an English school.
Like most 9 year olds, Nory dreams of things that most adults are too jaded to consider-- like creating a museum of plastic sushi, or being a pop-up book engineer.
As adults we may take ourselves too seriously, or trivialize the lives of children-- but Baker runs time in reverse and brings the adult reader back to fourth grade, to a land of run-on sentences and malapropisms, where the lives of insects and adventures of stuffed ! animals are more significant than politics or money or other phenomena that adults hold so close to their hearts.
If there is a darker theme beneath this story, I haven't been able to find it. Rather, Nory is about the distinct flavor of happiness that disappears when we become teenagers and adults. Warning: this book may compell you to act like a 9 year old.
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Kept waiting for plot. 7. Juli 1999
Von Ein Kunde
Although this author did a great job of writing from the young girls perspective, a plot would have made the book much more fun. Still, the book was time well spent and many of the random thoughts going through Nory's head were amusing. I look forward to reading some more of his work.
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Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
I bought this book the way I used to buy Beatles albums in the 60's...what can I say? I'm a fan. So it isn't with greatest pleasure that I report that this book was a major snore...yes, I guess he does write books to put grown-ups to sleep(the fictional father's occupation is thusly described by Nory). I don't want to say it has all been down-hill since THE MEZZANINE but after a sort-of sophmore slump with his cozy domestic second novel, ROOM TEMPERATURE, he did some great non-fiction(U AND I and the New Yorker piece on card catalogues)but seemed to get lazy(or just cynical about what sells)with his sex books. Nonetheless his writing was still great. Now more of his laziness, or just parental goofyness, has lead Baker to take his childrens' language and imagination for this latest effort. I was initially amused by Baker's clever and accurate recreation of Nory's language but as I realized that was all there was ever going to be in this novel, then I felt cheated. I'm a parent and a Speech&Language Therapist working with elementary school-aged children so I'm pretty burnt-out on the linguistic charms of the young and that's about all this book has going for it.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Almost as much fun as an actual 9 year old! 15. Juli 2000
Von Karen
Nicholson Baker's literary abilities are praised all over the place - I'd like to praise his obvious parenting abilities. This book shows that he both remembers his own childhood and is paying intense, loving attention to his children. We get a great book - his kids get a great dad.
This book is insightful, brilliant, etc - it's also USEFUL if you have school age children in your life. When they can't talk yet, we know they're not rational; but it's so easy to forget that children look like they have a lot more figured out than they sometimes do. Hang out in the inside of Nory's mind for awhile, and remember how confusing and scary and wonderful and BIG the world was when you were small.
The book also presents a textbook example of parents allowing a child's good sense to guide her in a moral dilemma. Again, of course the literary value of the book is more important, but how fabulous to read a book with such a flawlessly moral tone as well.
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Die neuesten Kundenrezensionen
3.0 von 5 Sternen It's like getting inside a nine year-old girl's head
Very unlike other works from this author (i.e. The Fermata and Vox), this story wonderfully reveals what goes on inside a nine year-old girl's head. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 21. März 2000 von Joseph Levens
2.0 von 5 Sternen Nothing new, despite the kid's view.
It seems like each book of Mr. Baker's sets out to push the limits of a genre or explore a new narrative form... "Hey, novel-length intelligent phone sex! Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 19. April 1999 veröffentlicht
2.0 von 5 Sternen Where's the plot?
I couldn't finish this book (and I always read books to the end), because it just doesn't go anywhere. Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 6. September 1998 veröffentlicht
1.0 von 5 Sternen This is the first book that I did NOT finish in over a year.
I have read Baker's earlier books and was midly entertained by the subjects and characters. But this latest, forget it. I couldn't even stay awake. Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 27. August 1998 veröffentlicht
2.0 von 5 Sternen The story was very disjointed, and tried to be too cutesy.
This is the first book I have read by this author, and will be the last, too. This is basically a children's book. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 24. August 1998 von
5.0 von 5 Sternen A children's book for grownups
How rare it is to find a novel that is simultaneously so sweet and so brilliant. It was also a reminder of the ways in which children are confronted with moral choices and... Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 23. August 1998 von Michael Godwin
2.0 von 5 Sternen This book belongs in the children's section...
I kept waiting for some plot twist that would qualify this novel as "adult fiction." At the end of the 200-odd pages, I concluded that this book would be better marketed... Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 24. Juli 1998 von
4.0 von 5 Sternen My inner child loved this book-my inner adult got bored.
A feel-good book that just might take the reader back a simpler, if not less painful, time in his or her life. Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 21. Juli 1998 veröffentlicht
4.0 von 5 Sternen A trip into the head of a nine year-old
There is not word in English to describe the opposite of a crime, but if there were, it would surely define this novel. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 15. Juli 1998 von Fernando Melendez
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