The Way the World Works by Nicholson Baker

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Baker's real position is that what is important isn't a fight between paper and plastic: it's that we pay attention to as much as possible as faithfully as possible...
-Guardian

Synopsis

The Way the World Works, Nicholson Baker's ranges over the map of life to examine what ails us, what eases our pain, and what gives us joy. Baker-recently hailed as "one of the most consistently enticing writers of our time" by The New York Times-moves from political controversy to the intimacy of his own life, from forgotten heroes of pacifism to airplane wings, telephones, paper mills, David Remnick, Joseph Pulitzer, the OED, and the manufacture of the Venetian gondola. In one essay, Baker surveys our fascination with video games while attempting to beat his teenage son at Modern Warfare 2; in a celebrated essay on Wikipedia, he describes his efforts to stem the tide of encyclopedic deletionism. Through all these pieces Baker shines the light of an inexpugnable curiosity; The Way the World Works is a keen-minded, generous-spirited compendium by a modern American master.
 

About Nicholson Baker

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Nicholson Baker is the author of nine novels and five works of nonfiction, including The Anthologist, Human Smoke, and Double Fold (winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award). He lives in Maine with his family.
 
Published August 30, 2012 by Simon & Schuster Ltd. 336 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Gay & Lesbian. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Way the World Works
All: 2 | Positive: 1 | Negative: 1

Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Leo Robson on Nov 02 2012

He allows himself to be analytical only about things that disagree with him. Otherwise, he is mostly content to skim the surface – and to offer the reader whipped cream.

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Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Sam Leith on Sep 08 2012

Baker's real position is that what is important isn't a fight between paper and plastic: it's that we pay attention to as much as possible as faithfully as possible...

Read Full Review of The Way the World Works | See more reviews from Guardian

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