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Bartleby and me : reflections of an old scrivener  Cover Image Book Book

Bartleby and me : reflections of an old scrivener / Gay Talese.

Talese, Gay, (author.).


American journalist Gay Talese chronicles his pioneering career, marked by a fascination with the world's hidden characters, followed by an all-new, in-depth study of Nicholas, a New York doctor who blew up his Manhattan brownstone rather than sell it to pay a court-ordered sum in a divorce settlement.
"'New York is a city of things unnoticed,' a young reporter named Gay Talese wrote sixty years ago. He would spend the rest of his legendary career defying that statement by noticing those details others missed, celebrating the people most reporters overlooked, understanding that it was through these minor characters that the epic story of New York and of America unfolded. Inspired by Melville's great short story 'Bartleby the Scrivener,' Talese now remembers the unforgettable 'nobodies' he has profiled in his pioneering career, from the New York Times's anonymous obituary writer to Frank Sinatra's entourage. In the book's final act, a remarkable piece of original reporting titled 'Dr. Bartha's Brownstone,' Talese introduces readers to a new 'Bartleby,' an unknown doctor who made his mark on the city one summer day in 2006. Rising within the city of New York are about one million buildings. These include skyscrapers, apartment buildings, bodegas, schools, churches, hospitals, and homeless shelters. Also spread through the city are more than 19,000 vacant lots, one of which suddenly appeared some years ago, at 34 East 62d Street, between Madison and Park Avenues, when the unhappy owner of a brownstone at that address blew it up (with himself in it) rather than sell his cherished 19th-century high stoop Neo-Grecian residence in order to pay the court-ordered sum of four-million dollars to the woman who had divorced him three years earlier. This man was a physician of sixty-six named Nicholas Bartha. On the morning of July 10th, 2006, Dr. Bartha had filled his building with gas that he had diverted from a pipe in the basement, and then he set off an explosion that reduced the four-story premises into a fiery heap that would soon injure ten firefighters, five passersby, and damage the interiors of thirteen apartments that stood to the west of the crumbled brownstone"-- Provided by publisher.

Item details

  • ISBN: 9780358455479
  • ISBN: 0358455472
  • Physical Description: 303 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
  • Edition: First edition.
  • Publisher: New York : Mariner Books, [2023]

Contents / Notes

Formatted Contents Note:
Part I. A story of Wall Street -- Part II. In Sinatra's shadow -- Part III. Dr. Bartha's brownstone.
Subject: Talese, Gay.
Journalists > New York (State) > New York > Biography.
Bartha, Nicholas, 1940-2006.
Physicians > New York (State) > New York > Biography.
Buildings > New York (State) > New York.
Genre: autobiographies (literary works)

Currently available copies

  • 3 out of 3 copies are currently available at PINES.


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Library System: Library Branch Name
Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status  
Flint River Regional Library System:
      Fayette County Public Library
070.92 TALESE ( Send Text)
31022010378278 ADULT Available
Houston County Public Library:
      Perry Branch Library
B TAL ( Send Text)
3102801684367 ADULT Available
Three Rivers Regional Library System:
      St. Marys Library
BIO TALESE ( Send Text)
31006500103338 Stacks Available

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