From the home of Stylist


Four reasons to put this 1995 bestseller on your reading list

• We all know a Rob. Rob Fleming is the 36-year-old owner of a failing London record shop. After splitting up from his girlfriend Laura, he gets in touch with his ex-girlfriends in a bid to understand where he’s going wrong with life and love. Rob is basically scared of growing up and settling down. Yes, he’s a bit of an idiot, but these are worries we’ve related to at some point in our lives.

• The soundtrack. Rob is obsessed with making mix tapes and organising his extensive record collection, and when Laura dumps him he’s sort of relieved because of their incompatible music tastes. This is completely understandable: we once ended a relationship because of our suitor’s penchant for Rod Stewart. Yes, Rod is great in small doses but no, it’s not alright to own his entire back catalogue and nothing else.

• We love London. Hornby’s beloved north London always has a part to play in any of his novels and High Fidelity is no different. We loved the film adaptation of the book but were a bit disappointed it moved the story to Chicago.

• List-mania. Rob incessant list-making is well-observed. Particularly enjoyable is his “Top five bands or musicians who will have to be shot come the musical revolution”: 1.Simple Minds. 2.Michael Bolton. 3.U2. 4.Bryan Adams. 5.Genesis

High Fidelity by Nick Hornby (Penguin, £8.99)


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