- About a Boy
:"This article is about the novel. For the film, see
About a Boy (film); for the film's soundtrack album by Badly Drawn Boy, see About a Boy (soundtrack)."
Infobox Book |
name = About a Boy
language = English
publisher = Gollancz
release_date = 1998
media_type = Print (Hardback &
pages = 286 pp
isbn = ISBN 0575061596
"About a Boy" is a
1998novel by British writer Nick Hornby. It was adapted into a film in 2002.
The novel is about Will, a 36-year-old bachelor, and Marcus, an eccentric, introverted, bullied 12-year-old with a suicidal mother. Will, who never had to work thanks to the royalties from his father's Christmas song hit, has a lot of spare time. Most of this he spends smoking, watching TV, listening to albums and looking for female companionship, preferably of the short-lived variety. After a pleasant relationship with a single mother, Will comes up with the idea of attending a single parents group as a new way to pick up women. He invents a two-year old son called Ned.
It is at one of these single parents meetings he comes to know Marcus and a friendship develops. Will helps Marcus to fit into the modern world. He takes him shopping, buys him shoes and introduces him to the music of Nirvana. As the story progresses , so does Marcus and Will's friendships. Marcus is adopted by Ellie, a very tough fifteen year old girl, who is constantly in trouble at school because she insists on wearing a
Kurt Cobainjumper. He also spends some time with his dad who visits Marcus and his mother for Christmas, together with his new girlfriend and her mother. Meanwhile Will starts going out with a single mum called Rachel, who has a son called Ali who is about the same age as Marcus. In the end Marcus evolves and becomes a “normal” kid for his age. Will becomes more mature and he ends up wanting to marry Rachel. Therefore, both Will and Marcus have started to live according to their age.
Film, TV or theatrical adaptations
A film adaptation of the same name was filmed in 2002 by Chris and Paul Weitz. It starred
Nicholas Houltas Marcus, Hugh Grantas Will, Toni Colletteas Fiona, and Rachel Weiszas Rachel. While the screenplay closely follows Hornby's novel, it omits scenes involving drug use and has a different ending. It removes any reference to the band Nirvana and Kurt Cobain. The soundtrack to the film, including several full songs and numerous incidental pieces, was composed entirely by British singer-songwriter Badly Drawn Boy.
The title is a pun on the song "
About a Girl" by Nirvana, a band that is featured in the book.
* [http://www.nytimes.com/books/98/06/28/reviews/980628.28espent.html Too Cool for Words:] "The New York Times" review by Hal Espen
* [http://www.abc.net.au/arts/books/stories/s424255.htm Interview with Nick Hornby on "About a Boy"] by ABC Arts Online
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