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Publishers WeeklyStarred Review.
Though it's a bit of a one-trick pony, there may be no more addictive read published this season than Rose's second collection of personal ads from the buttoned-down literary biweekly London Review of Books. Distinctly British and amazingly (sometimes appallingly) honest, the ads roll out like a carpet of human want ready for trampling across: "Man, 42, seeks woman to 50 to help harness the disappointment I routinely create in all my relationships"; "Woman, 51. Not good at parties but tremendous breasts"; "I am Mr Right! You are Miss Distinct Possibility." Aside from a lively introduction by Rose, who manages the personals from his New York office (they were his idea), the ads are the whole book-and yet, it's enough, especially good for reading out loud to friends, and for finding inspiration when updating the online dating profile. Rose's chapter divisions, plumbed from the ads themselves ("Hubris made me pen this ad," "Scrimshawed from the tusk of a walrus"), aren't particularly descriptive, but his thorough footnotes make an excellent education in high-brow UK cultural references.
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