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The Pint Man: A Novel [Hardcover]

Steve Rushin


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Book Description

Feb. 23 2010
A funny and endearing novel about the comforts of a never-ending adolescence and the glories of Guinness.

For Rodney Poole, a friendly and unassuming lover of clever wordplay and television sports of all stripes, Boyle's Irish Pub is a haven of good cheer, pleasantly pointless conversation, elaborate jokes, heated trivia contests, well-poured pints, and familiar faces. The pressures and demands of the outside world hold no sway there- the crowd at Boyle's is his family, and with family all sins are forgiven.

But reality cannot be kept at bay forever, and now Rodney's best friend and partner in inertia, Keith, is getting married and moving to Chicago. Since Rodney has for the most part enjoyed his bachelorhood vicariously through Keith, the prospect of being single, middle-aged, unemployed, and without his pal to while away the nights with is causing Rodney to rethink—or rather, create—his priorities.

When Keith introduces him to the lovely Mairead (rhymes with parade), a cheerful career woman who seems to enjoy his bad puns, ambitionless nature, and love of literature, Rodney can spy an honorable path to grown-up-hood at last. But a series of comic mishaps jeopardize his budding relationship with Mairead, his friendship with Keith, and most serious of all, his place on a barstool in the idyllic world of Boyle's.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Doubleday; 1 edition (Feb. 23 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385529929
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385529921
  • Product Dimensions: 2.9 x 14.6 x 21 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 408 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,727,578 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Praise for THE PINT MAN

"An exceedingly enjoyable first novel....it’s Rushin’s narrative voice, guileless, digressive, and ribald, riddled with wordplay and trivia, that makes this such a pleasure.....great company for an evening, with or without a pint at your elbow."--Booklist
 

"What sets the work apart is Rodney's sharp wit....Rushin emerges as one of the sharpest wits on the scene"--Publishers Weekly


”THE PINT MAN is clever, bracing, and full of laughs. Steve Rushin proves to be a master juggler of words, a mischievous crossword-puzzler run amok.”
--Carl Hiaasen, author of The Downhill Lie and Nature Girl


“I had so much fun reading THE PINT MAN. Rushin can do more tricks with words than Houdini with locks. There's nobody in America like him. I would put him up against Ogden Nash-and spot Nash half the alphabet.”
--Rick Reilly, author of Who’s Your Caddy? and the upcoming Sports From Hell


"Steve Rushin's The Pint Man is a wisecracking, rib-shaking, beer-stained, warm-hearted romp of a novel about a Midtown ne'er-do-well adrift in that elastic period between post-adolescence and manhood. It's the literary equivalent to Happy Hour at some dreamy shambles of an Irish bar: a raucous carnival of laughter, gruff camaraderie, insults, arguments, languishment, romance, more laughter, blurred reflection, big sloppy hugs, and endless rounds of beer. Anyone who's ever fallen head-over-heels in love with a bar will fall just as hard for this book."
--Jonathan Miles, author of Dear American Airlines


“Steve Rushin has written a very funny book that's also unexpectedly deep and poignant. And just so it's clear, I wrote this blurb while completely sober.”
--A.J. Jacobs, author of The Know-it All and The Year of Living Biblically


Praise for Steve Rushin

“His work is imaginative, quirky, and insightful….. it is a pleasure to encounter a writer who seeks out the humanity and humor in competition.”—Booklist

“One of the most agile essayists around.”
Publishers Weekly

"Riotous”--Esquire 

“A real delight"--USA Today

“Rushin can cull a chortle from a cat.” –Denver Post

“Rushin’s wide-ranging cultural references and casually witty writing style appeal to both insiders and outsiders . . . This is modern literature, wearing broken-in sneakers.”—Minneapolis Star Tribune

About the Author

STEVE RUSHIN, the author of the nonfiction books Road Swing and The Caddie Was a Reindeer, wrote a beloved weekly column called Air & Space for Sports Illustrated from 1998 to 2007. He and his wife, Rebecca Lobo, live in Connecticut with their three children.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  16 reviews
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "The Pint Man": This Glass is Much More Than Half Full April 27 2010
By Matt Baron - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I've been a big Steve Rushin fan for 20 years, dating back to his early years as one of Sports Illustrated's most gifted story-tellers. "The Pint Man" was my first experience reading Rushin as a novelist and I was not disappointed. He creates, more than ever, like a kid in a sandbox, with each pebble a letter and no limitations about what may be lurking behind the next pebble.

For laugh-out-loud humor, plot twists, engaging pop culture references, periodic etymological lessons, trivia fodder, and just plain-old mind-blowing wordplay, "The Pint Man" is a bulls-eye.

While, yes, it is a novel, it also serves as an encyclopedia, history lesson, trivia treasure trove, and insightful commentary on a wide range of fronts. And of the many masterfully told scenes here, perhaps my favorite parts involves a guy, and an act, by the name of "Hookslide."
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Wordy Romp of a Novel July 27 2010
By cait - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Rodney, a thirty-something year old man who has not yet fully grown up, is in a bit of a holding pattern at the moment. Six weeks ago, he lost his job in 'corporate communications' for Talbott's when he wrote a speech for the CEO of the company and missed what proved to be a very embarrassing typo, and his search for a new job can hardly be called serious. On the personal side, his best friend Keith is moving to Chicago to get married and start a new job. But happily, there is still one constant in his life, his favorite neighborhood bar, Boyle's.

"Rodney has read a book called The Great Good Place, by an urban sociologist named Ray Oldenburg, who coined the phrase "the third place" to describe informal public gathering spaces-bars- that are neither home nor job. Rodney had no work and home was a way station, where he kept his books and his bed. For him, bars were his first. Home was the second. There was no third."

Yes, Boyle's plays a very important role in his life and in this book, but it is not the only thing. He has all those books...

"He kept every book he has ever read. Until there were just too many, he had them all on shelves, their spines displayed as trophies, like the taxidermied heads of big game he had bagged."

And now he has met a smart, beautiful woman, Mairead, "rhymes with parade", who shared his love of wordy banter...oh yes, it may be love!

On the surface, this book is a glimpse into Rodney's life and the love triangle he is caught in, between his bar and this delightful woman he has just met. While that is a fine story, with some very amusing incidents, the real attraction for this reader is Rodney's love of words...palindromes and witty banter, puns and spoonerisms, and endless examples of amusing trivia.

"Some people have a mind like a steel trap. Rodney had a mind like a lint trap. It retained only useless fluff: batting averages, ancient jingles, a slogan glimpsed once, years ago, on the side of a panel van, for an exterminator ("We'll Make Your Ants Say Uncle") or a window treatment specialist ("A Couple of Blind Guys") or a septic tank specialist ("Doody Calls")."

A man who love crossword puzzles and puns, who actually reads books and, most of all, could write an essay on what makes a good pint of Guinness...he may just be the perfect man...lol

While this is Rushin's first novel, he is a very experienced writer. After graduating from college in 1988, he joined the staff of Sports Illustrated, where he was a senior writer until 2007. He has written three previous non-fiction books, including The Caddie Was a Reindeer, which was a semifinalist in 2004 for the Thurber Prize for American Humor. I suspect there is a bit of an autobiographical element to this book, at least in his love of Guinness and banter. I find Mr. Rushin a very amusing writer and I thoroughly enjoyed this wordy romp of a novel.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wordplay for the pubophile March 13 2010
By MD in NY - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
If you've ever laughed out loud at an anagram, palindrome, pun, spoonerism, Wellerism or Tom Swiftie, or if you've ever bent your arm at a pub where everybody knew your name, this is the book for you.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So funny! March 9 2010
By Dan Gutrich - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I do not normally review, but this book is like eating candy. you will laugh out loud on each page.
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars wickedly cheeky and heartfelt March 13 2010
By Emma Steed - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
What makes Pint Man great to read is the style, dry as an etching, sparse, elegant, literate, modest, cynical. Steve Rushin makes it look easy: paragraph upon paragraph of jokes, allusions, nicks and barbs held in more or less perfect control and tempo, creating a web of words that lay so lightly on the page, anchored by a couple of running jokes, a triple pun and a final perfect landing, like the Olympic gymnasts who come to earth without a tremor and an extra hop. And he knows how to tell a story.

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