Sartre’s Sink: The Great Writers’ Complete Book of DIY

Mark Crick

Sartre’s Sink: The Great Writers’ Complete Book of DIY

For too long DIY books have suffered the neglect of the literary Establishment. Finally, here in one volume, are the essential DIY tips of the world's greatest writers. Dostoyevsky tells of a young man employed by an elderly lady to retile her bathroom; Caesar puts up a shelf for his rebellious tribe of adolescenti; the existentialist hero of the Sartre pastiche is both disgusted and nauseated to discover in a blocked sink the revelation of his own condition. We also learn how to repair a dripping tap under Conrad's eyes, replace a window pane with a voyeuristic Milan Kundera, and hang wallpaper under the watchful eye of Mark Twain. Other handy hints include how to: replace a roof tile; remedy a squeaking floor board; remove a carpet stain and bleed a radiator, by writers, including Bronte, Shakespeare, Duras, Salinger and Paul Auster. As in "Kafka's Soup", each piece is illustrated by a famous artist, including da Vinci, Hokusai and Rembrandt. 3.5 out of 5 based on 3 reviews
Sartre’s Sink: The Great Writers’ Complete Book of DIY

Omniscore:

Classification Non-fiction
Genre Humour
Format Hardback
Pages 98
RRP £10.99
Date of Publication October 2008
ISBN 978-1847080479
Publisher Granta
 

For too long DIY books have suffered the neglect of the literary Establishment. Finally, here in one volume, are the essential DIY tips of the world's greatest writers. Dostoyevsky tells of a young man employed by an elderly lady to retile her bathroom; Caesar puts up a shelf for his rebellious tribe of adolescenti; the existentialist hero of the Sartre pastiche is both disgusted and nauseated to discover in a blocked sink the revelation of his own condition. We also learn how to repair a dripping tap under Conrad's eyes, replace a window pane with a voyeuristic Milan Kundera, and hang wallpaper under the watchful eye of Mark Twain. Other handy hints include how to: replace a roof tile; remedy a squeaking floor board; remove a carpet stain and bleed a radiator, by writers, including Bronte, Shakespeare, Duras, Salinger and Paul Auster. As in "Kafka's Soup", each piece is illustrated by a famous artist, including da Vinci, Hokusai and Rembrandt.

Reviews

The Sunday Times

Sunday Times Humour Book of the Year

Here is the John Sergeant of humorous books, the one who comes out of nowhere to become a surprise success. At least, it would be if its target market were not Eng Lit students who do a bit of DIY in their spare time... It's short, to the point, and when I read it out in the office, my colleagues laughed like drains (which then had to be cleared by Jean-Paul Sartre).

30/11/2008

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The Financial Times

Rosie Blau

Crick is a brilliant literary ventriloquist. In “Hanging Wallpaper with Ernest Hemingway”, we meet an old man: “He had worked for two days and two nights to strip away the old wallpaper and now on the morning of the third day, the time to hang the new paper had come and he was tired.”... Home improvement may never be the same again, however, after reading “Painting a Panelled Door” with the famously erotic Anaïs Nin: we watch the protagonist “thrust the stiff animal bristle of his brush” into the tin of paint; later his lover thrills to feel “the dark rectangle of stiff hair beneath her fingers”.

13/12/2008

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The Guardian

Ian Sansom

...hands-down droll. Crick offers chapters including "Hanging Wallpaper" with Ernest Hemingway, "Tiling a Bathroom" with Dostoevsky and "Painting a Room" with Haruki Murakami: "I looked across at Aoko standing on the steps so she could reach up into the corners ... My imagination kicked in and I thought of her body, naked against mine."

13/12/2008

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