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Amazon Best Books of the Month, November 2009: One of Zadie Smith's great gifts as a novelist is her openness: both to character and ideas in her stories, and to what a novel itself should be. That she's a novelist was clear as soon she broke through with White Teeth in her early twenties, but what kind she'll be (or will be next) seems open to change. Which all, along with her consistent intelligence, grace, and wit, makes her an ideal essayist too, especially for the sort of "occasional essays" collected for the first time in Changing My Mind. She can make the case equally for the cozy "middle way" of E.M. Forster and the most purposefully demanding of David Foster Wallace's stories, both as a reader and, you imagine, as a writer who is considering their methods for her own. The occasions in this book didn't only bring her to write about writers, though: she also investigates, among other subjects, Katherine Hepburn, Liberia, and Barack Obama (through the lens of Pygmalion), and, in the collection's finest piece, recalls her late father and their shared comedy snobbery. One wishes more occasions upon her. --Tom Nissley
ZADIE SMITH was born in northwest London in 1975. She is the author of White Teeth, The Autograph Man, On Beauty, Changing My Mind, and NW.See all Editorial Reviews
I found these essays a mixed bag--some insightful and engaging, some not so much.
I did find them interesting enough that I listened all the way through.
I think Ms Smith is an extremely talented wordsmith but her essays can tend towards the precious.Published 9 months ago by Dan
Changing My Mind: Occasional Essays is categorized into five sections: Reading, Being, Seeing, Feeling, and Remembering. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Martina A. Nicolls
This book is confusing and uninteresting. Unless you have read the same obscure literary works referenced in each essay, it does not make sence and is not a good read. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Annie Kroo
As always, brilliant and deeply entertaining. Read it and many of the books it discussed.Published 13 months ago by Steven M. Koes
I ordered this book for my daughter, what makes her happy is the affordability of it and it came on time plus the book is very neat and clean.....thanks guys :)Published 14 months ago by Ma Socorro Harlow
A collection of writings like this, spread across years of composition and categories of content and intent, is bound to be uneven. Read morePublished 24 months ago by Lyn Relph