The Crowd Sounds Happy

Book Digest Nicholas Dawidoff’s previous memoir, The Fly Swatter: How My Grandfather Made His Way in the World, told of Professor Alexander Gershenkron’s illustrious and much-traveled life. In his newest offering Dawidoff, who teaches at Princeton and writes for some of our smarter magazines, writes of growing up as an oddball and how—wouldn’t you know—baseball was a saving grace. He’s a fine writer and an acute observer, and as Jonathan Franzen blurbs:
…The young Dawidoff who loved Ted Williams, Elvis Costello, and Samuel Johnson has grown up to write like an original amalgam of all three, and the result is an intricately recollected, uncommonly frank self-portrait with something terrific on page after page.
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