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The Patch - John McPhee

The Patch

By: John McPhee

eBook | 19 November 2018

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This wide-ranging essay collection serves as a covert memoir of a cult literary figure—New Yorker writer John McPhee.

John McPhee's *The Patch *is just that: patches of work across a writer's lifetime that come together to form a quilt of essays, reflections and reminiscences.

Ranging across a variety of genres and styles, subjects and moods, his patches are collected from writings that have not previously appeared in any book.
This collection is divided into Part I 'The Sporting Scene' and Part II 'An Album Quilt'. It includes vignettes of his childhood hunting golf balls in the woods, the career and choices of a famous lacrosse coach, Joan Baez's journey into a musical career, his daughter's response to a high-school vocabulary test and his travels across the United States.
John McPhee's singular style keeps each patch fitting comfortably with the next; each text falls seamlessly within the rhyme and rhythm of a larger work.
Fit to be consumed all at once, or savoured piecemeal, The Patch gives a full taste of his impeccable power over language.

John McPhee is a staff writer at the New Yorker and the author of thirty-two books. The Patch is his seventh collection of essays. He lives in Princeton, New Jersey.

'A bountiful cornucopia of insightful essays that display the wide range of his interests and tastes...McPhee delights in cracking open subjects, both ordinary and esoteric, and making them accessible to the layperson in works that testify to his virtuosity as one of the greatest living American essayists.' Publishers Weekly (starred review)

'No one else can take topics as diverse and seemingly dry and make of them such diverting, entertaining and educational literature.' Library Journal

'McPhee has created a style—blending detailed reporting with a novelistic sense of narrative—and a standard that have influenced a whole generation of journalists.' Baltimore Sun

'McPhee's sentences are born of patience and attention: he seems to possess a pair of eyes with the swivel, zoom and reach of a peregrine falcon's, and a pair of ears with the recording ability of a dictaphone. He notices almost everything.' Guardian

'The most versatile journalist in America.' New York Times Book Review

'McPhee finds surprising poetry in the material at hand...The Patch is just another chapter in an ongoing memoir of generous curiosity.' New York Times

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