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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Imperfectionists
Although the book's story lines have an atmosphere of nearly despair, the reader can find him/herself immersed in the lives of the people involved directly and indirectly with a failing newspaper. It is a fine study of "faulty" characters.
Published on April 3 2011 by Jacques Liard

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't understand the praise for this novel
I bought this book because it received great reviews and because, as a former journalist, I thought I would find it especially interesting. I was disappointed. I abandoned "The Imperfectionists" about half-way through. This is another one of those novels, like "Freedom" by Jonathan Franzen, that leaves me puzzled about the state of contemporary literary fiction...
Published on July 6 2011 by Mark


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Imperfectionists, April 3 2011
By 
Jacques Liard (Gatineau, Quebec Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Imperfectionists: A Novel (Hardcover)
Although the book's story lines have an atmosphere of nearly despair, the reader can find him/herself immersed in the lives of the people involved directly and indirectly with a failing newspaper. It is a fine study of "faulty" characters.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant!, July 4 2010
This review is from: The Imperfectionists: A Novel (Hardcover)
To a casual reader, this surprisingly successful debut may come across as a series of well written stories about a set of broken characters working for a failing paper; but Rachman's brilliance shines through this complex work in a number of impressive ways, not the least of which is his ability to make you sympathize - even emphathize with people who you might normally prefer to avoid. As other reviewers have noted, this talent is difficult to figure, especially on such a scale (this seems to happen repeatedly throughout the book) but it is a stroke of brilliance. Both through the structure of the book, and through the excellent writing, one comes to understand that although each of the characters is broken in some way, they are all human. I can think of few who have accomplished such a task so seamlessly and so well. It is the ideal combination of subtlety and force. I sincerely hope that it is the first of many.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A really terrific read!, May 7 2010
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This review is from: The Imperfectionists: A Novel (Hardcover)
After reading Christopher Buckley's glowing review in the NY Times on Sunday morning I found myself buying this book that afternoon. I just finished it last night and wished that it hadn't ended! I found myself laughing or gasping out loud often over the interesting characters, their quirks and just how the author describes life to a tee ("...anything worth anything is complicated...").

From another readers' Amazon.com review: "From my reading, I'm guessing that Tom Rachman is not only a wonderful writer, but a wonderful guy." I have to agree. After reading this, you will wish this guy was your friend.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More Bookish Thoughts..., May 30 2011
By 
Reader Writer Runner (Victoria, BC) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Imperfectionists: A Novel (Hardcover)
Ironically, "The Imperfectionists" is the perfect title for Tom Rachman's brilliant, astute and original debut novel. Set in Rome, the book describes an English-language newspaper's demise; each chapter (all of which read like short stories) focuses on one individual who is somehow affiliated with the paper. There's the desperate Paris-based freelancer willing to jeopardize his son's career for a byline, the lazy obituary writer whose life is transformed by tragedy, the imperious editor-in-chief whose open marriage is on the fritz and the most hilarious rookie Cairo correspondent who is ruthlessly manipulated by a competitor. Though "imperfect" to a fault, Rachman's characters come across as authentic and endearing. Yes, they gripe and annoy each other but their stories are so real, so poignant and so strongly imagined that together they form one winner of a novel.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Impetfectionists, Jan. 3 2014
I read this book twice and liked it better the second time. The characters were interesting and the inter personal relationships very clever. It was a great story. I was fascinated how some characters very directly affected the lives of others they didn't know very well.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't understand the praise for this novel, July 6 2011
I bought this book because it received great reviews and because, as a former journalist, I thought I would find it especially interesting. I was disappointed. I abandoned "The Imperfectionists" about half-way through. This is another one of those novels, like "Freedom" by Jonathan Franzen, that leaves me puzzled about the state of contemporary literary fiction. "Freedom", too, received rave reviews and was, to me, disappointing in the same way that "The Imperfectionists" is disappointing. The writing was facile, the characters uninteresting and the plot non-existent. The whole thing had an air of trying very hard to sound clever.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Debut Novel, Feb. 15 2011
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This review is from: The Imperfectionists: A Novel (Hardcover)
This book is so well written you will find yourself re-reading sentences and paragraphs for the sheer delight. You not only read about the characters: you walk among them and easily become them. Each voice is so distinct that you have the feeling you know these people and will miss them once the book is finished. Humor and heartbreak intermingle with all it means to be human.

It satisfies on many so levels. Each chapter is so complete and well crafted like an award winning short story.
My only worry is how Tom Rachman an ever reach these heights again.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect summer read!, Aug. 7 2011
By 
Vlad Thelad (Ottawa, Ontario, Canada) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
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Well, it spent almost a year on my "to read" list, and finally its turn came up. As serendipity would have it, this delightful first novel by Tom Rachmann turned out to be the perfect summer read: a sequence of interwoven short stories that can be read indulging to stop as often as the season's pace dictates. In them, each character gets his or hers moment in the spotlight as their stories intertwine, bringing us the steady and unstoppable demise of an international newspaper based in Rome. Sound writing, solid characters and great stories combine, as the pieces fall into place to configure a very good novel. This one is a winner.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book I have read in the past year, March 21 2011
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Pip "ppsm1" (Abbotsford, British Columbia) - See all my reviews
This was my favourite book of 2010 hands down. This will be particularly interesting to anyone who has been in the Journalism biz but you do not have to been a journalist to enjoy the personal stories of the characters involved. Unlike Franzen's recent yawn bomb (sigh) a refreshing terse style is a breath of fresh air.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not Recommended, Oct. 29 2013
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I read it because it was on my book club list but I didn't think there was a point to it. It was not a difficult read.
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The Imperfectionists: A Novel
The Imperfectionists: A Novel by Tom Rachman (Hardcover - April 6 2010)
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