You know what is really funny? Dogs, with socks on running. You know what else is funny? I actually read this book years ago and had no memory of it until I got about 7/8 of they way through. Then I realized “Oh, this is that book about a loser with a shop and a nice girlfriend who gets his act together.” And it was, too.
Hornby’s characters are instantly recognizable. I have run into numerous Robs of various stripes; nice people who landed in a job and/or relationship and just aren’t quite sure what they are doing there. These are middle of the road folks who are doing ok, but vaguely displeased with life. However, things never seem dire enough to spend the effort needed to truly make a change. What makes this novel so interesting is that Rob changes his life vastly without truly changing his life. Same job, same girlfriend, same apartment, just a different perspective making the mundane into the enjoyable. A good, low-key yet quietly uplifting book. (Note: nope, never saw the movie. Is it any good – anyone?)