@Keaneofficial
Tim's Book Club 6
19 Mar 2010

American Pastoral by Philip Roth

I read this quite a while ago, when I was writing songs for the second album. It's a very heavy family epic that follows a guy called the Swede. He runs a successful business in New York City and has a lovely family, and it basically charts the disintegration of his family and his values. I'm sure there have been lots and lots of books written about that kind of thing, but this particular one stands out because it's so psychologically complex and you never know what is going to happen next.

The character does everything that you think would be the right thing to do. You don't have that sense you often get with a film or maybe a less dense book, where you can see the mistakes being made and you think "Oh God, that's going to go wrong." He has as much intelligence as you could ask him to have. He attempts to do everything sensitively and tries to be a good parent and husband. But the twists and turns of the way that it all works out are really complex. It's essentially just a totally unglamourous story that could be happening to any of us really. But from a human and psychological point of view, it's incredibly interesting. It's also really quite depressing.

The book definitely shares some of that darkness that runs through Under The Iron Sea. Songs like Atlantic are probably closely related. And, actually, at one point Crystal Ball was called American Pastoral, after the book. The lyrics of that song were actually based around the phrase "American Pastoral" and some of the story, for quite a while. I can't remember why I changed it in the end.

I think my influences as a songwriter come from far and wide, but especially from books. I'm quite a slow reader, and I think I really engage with a book emotionally. Often a book will really be a big part of my life for however long it takes me to read it. Sometimes I'll be dipping into it for weeks and months, reading a few pages at a time, because I have a terribly short attention span. And when I'm not reading it, I'll find myself thinking about it, and talking to other people about it. I think all that does definitely come out in my songwriting.

Tim

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Comments (104)

I love your book club! Your views and insights to the books are really interesting, and I plan to have a read of a few of them! :) Please review some more books soon... when you have the time

Posted by Anna0303 at 3:13pm, 28 Jul 2010

HI TIM: I`VE JUST FINISHED READING THE BOOK. IT IS AMAZING IN SO MANY WAYS, SPECIALLY BECAUSE PHILIP ROTH GETS INTO THE MIND OF NOT ONLY THE SWEETISH BUT ALL THE OTHER CHARACTERS. BEYOND THE AMERICAN DREAM IDEA, AND THE THOUGHTS, AND HOPES AND FEARS OF THE JEWISH FAMILIES OF THAT TIME, I THINK A.P. IT IS A BOOK ABOUT THE COMMON PARENT AND HUSBAND WITHOUT A SPECIFIC DECADE OR TIME. THIS GUY IS SO NORMAL AND SO OBVIOUS IN SO MANY ASPECTS BUT HIS WORLD TRUMBLES BECAUSE OF THAT CRAZY DAUGHTER AND THE CONSECUENCES OF A SINGLE ACT. I GUESS WHAT IM TRYING TO SAY IS THAT, HE COULD BE YOU OR ME, OR MY FATHER OR MOTHER. MAYBE SOMETIMES I FEEL LIKE I HAVE NO PASSION OR IM DOING WHAT SOCIETY TELLS ME TO DO. WHAT A SHAME OF ME, BECAUSE AFTER READING THIS I COMPEL MYSELF TO THINK FOR MYSELF AND TO QUESTION EVERYTHING, I MEAN EVERY SINGLE THING THAT I THOUGHT IT WAS RIGHT. ALSO PHILIP ROTH INVITES US TO BE PART OF THAT SOCIETY OF THE 40S, 50S, AND 60S AND ALSO 90S IN NEW JERSEY, AND TO BREATH EVERY SINGLE PART OF WHAT THAT WOULD BE, THAT WAS ALSO MIND OPENING, FOR ME, BECAUSE IM FROM ECUADOR AND I HAVE VERY LIMITED KNOWLEDGE ABOUT JEWISH, AND GLOVE MAKING, ETC. AND I GET WHY TIM REVIEW THIS BOOK AND NOW I UNDERSTAND THE FULL MEANING OF ATLANTIC AND CRISTAL BALL: TO BE A MAN, TO HAVE A FAMILY AND THEN TO WAKE UP AND NOT TO BE RECOGNIZED BY NO ONE. THE DOUBTS ABOUT THE DEAD, THE LONELYNESS, THE FAMILY ISSUES WILL BE FOREVER IN OUR MINDS, BUT IT IS GREAT TO SEE HOW SOMEONE COULD INCLUDE THIS ISSUES IN A VERY UNTRADITIONAL WAY, BY MAKING US FEEL WHAT THAT SWEEDISH GUY FELT. LOVE YOU TIM AND ONCE AGAIN THANK YOU DEEP INSIDE.

Posted by brendabass at 4:44am, 22 Jul 2010

FRANKIE: In Prison?????!!!!! You are very offensive person!!!/ I don´t want use other word/ But, yes I am in prison in my flesh!! There are many people that live comatose live despite they are very active !!! Maybe .you are able to understand.....

Posted by Denislavia at 8:19am, 26 Mar 2010

...across New York rooftops, , I sleep yet.....

Posted by Denislavia at 10:27pm, 25 Mar 2010

,Nina, I am extremely tired , even I can´t think in my mother language , not in English, sorry,,,,, " I think that I am starting to disappear", .. "Oh, crystal ball , tell me life is beautiful,...!" I love this song , actually I love all your songs, I read recension about P. Rothś book called Portnoy´s Complaint - masturbation story , it is about searching for freedom by using sex as means of escape. " Then came adolescence- half my waking life spent locked behind the bathroom door, firing my wad down the toilet bowl, or into the soiled clothes in the laaundry hamper,.... Many readers found the book offensive and pornographic,... Me too! Now I live very comatose life, and I grudge the time I spend doing nothing. I liked the new exhibition of the British sculptor A.Gormley called Event Horizon / I saw it in the picture/ There are 31 human statues positioned across the cityś rooftops. It is very interesting!/ BBC news/ so, it´s all for now , from the bottom of my heart, with love

Posted by Denislavia at 10:25pm, 25 Mar 2010

Sorry Keane, it's out of context ! Forgive me, it's for our lovely planet who is dying...

Posted by athallie at 1:25pm, 25 Mar 2010

Hello to everyone, like every year, don’t forget the date with our planet on SATURDAY 27th MARCH, 8h30 pm in the whole world. It’s time to turn off your lights for one hour, a gesture to show your support to the struggle for environment. Thank you. http://www.earthhour.org/ ------http://www.earthhour.fr/------http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fcl cMfzjwug&feature=player_embedded#

Posted by athallie at 1:24pm, 25 Mar 2010

FRANKIE: that would make 365 hats a year -366 during leap year- and an increasingly cramped space.

Posted by Mihajasoa at 11:35pm, 24 Mar 2010

my grammer isn't that great either....meant to type....you're... sorry

Posted by nina at 10:56pm, 24 Mar 2010

@ Denislavia..your too kind... if you ever need to chat.. feel free.... this is one place I love to linger....

Posted by nina at 10:34pm, 24 Mar 2010

Thank you very much, Nina. You are blessed with the powerful gifts and with great happiness. You are veery valuable and powerful person!Your mother would be very proud of you!!! May God bless you and help you for ever!! Wishing you success in all your endeavors.!!!! With Respect,

Posted by Denislavia at 6:55pm, 24 Mar 2010

I KNOW MYSELF WELL ENOUGH TO SAY....I'M A LOUSY SPELLER....!! MAY GOD HOLD YOU IN THE HOLLOW OF HIS HAND...DENISLAVIA...

Posted by nina at 12:17am, 24 Mar 2010

@ Denislavia..I know well enough NOT to assume anything or to think I know everythng in this life, because I don't....I know my self well enough to say that I am a perfectionist...but I'm not perfect.. i know myself well enough to say..i get upset..but i don't hold a grudge.. I know my self well enough to know that my best friiend (since elementary) is still my best friend.....that my junior-high crush has been my husband for half of my life... I know my self well enough to know I was wrong to think I could face and deal with situations just because I am an adult..... I've lived enough to know that my mom's passing was and still is difficult to deal with.... and I don't know why, but I always felt as if god was watching over me...even before i ever acknowledged his existence.. I know my self well enough to say I was wrong at being angry with god when my mom passed away.... see Denislava...this is just a little bit...ME.. good night..and my god hold you in the hollow of his hand..

Posted by nina at 12:09am, 24 Mar 2010

What is your true character, Nina? I think that I am still struggling with the things in my life - with my own injustice or maybe cruelty,/ and maybe I´ll never be good enough/ but also with the injustice and cruelty of life!!! SWEDE- a Jew with blue eyes and blond hair is a parallel to Bible Job, in my humble opinion. "There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job, and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil. And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job , that there is none like him in the earth...., although thou movedst me against him, to destroy him without cause. .....Job":I am as one mocked of his neighbour, who calleth upon God, and he answereth him: the just upright man is laughed to scorn. The tabernacles of robbers prosper, and they that provoke God are secure, into whose hand God bringeth abundanity. God hath delivered me to the ungodly, and turned me over into the hands of the wicked. I was at ease, but he hath broken me asunder, he hath also taken me by my neck, and shaken me to pieces, and set me up for his mark. My face is full with weeping, and on my eyelidsis the shadow of death, Not for any injusticein mine hands, also my prayer is pure My friends scorn me , but mine eye; poureth out tears unto God. As for me, is my complaint to man?, and if it were so, why should not my spirit be troubled? Wherefore do the wicked live, become old, yea, are mighty in power? Their houses are safe from fear, neither is the rod of God upon them.....That the wicked is reserved to the day of destruction? they shall be brought forth to the day of wrath. Then Job said: / to Lord/ I know that thou canst do every thing, and that no thought can be withholden from thee. Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes. ... And the Lord turned the captivity of Job and gave him twice as much as he had before!!!!!! good night ,...

Posted by Denislavia at 10:43pm, 23 Mar 2010

We seen to think we have you all figured out Mr. R-O. Everything you were...everything you are...everything you'd like to be... .. neatly described and packaged into a paragraph or two... words are like prisms....they disperse a small reflection of who we are.... but they only skim the surface ..bouncing off waves of light....revealing just a bit of our true character...

Posted by nina at 2:01am, 23 Mar 2010

Oh, Tim , you make me so happy whenever... despite you talk about sad things..... The American pastoral which becomes the total vandalization and "the indigenous American beserk" is the sad thing. I think , this isn´t only the indigenous American phenomena! One slov. hip-hop singer sings " Thatś the fallacy, malicious lies, envy that will kill this country. People lost themselves, denied the God , Good., they can feel nothing but hate and ruthlessness,... I´m not trying to be pessimistic , but despite of it I am.There are so many people that are mean and cruel and I don´t know why they are like that- It is so primitive behaviour! Now I am so fatigued, so a bientot , eternal beautiful blessings

Posted by Denislavia at 12:26am, 23 Mar 2010

skull b*ng? interesting concept. this is a good recommendation, TRO. p. roth has a way of making ya think that no other author possesses. deeeep stuff! I see sooo many literary 'mentions' here...even Ralph Waldo Emerson! Good Company on this page! yeah! :)! awaiting the next TRO recommendation..........

Posted by anya at 9:15pm, 22 Mar 2010

Vic, merci. Je comprends maintenant pourquoi même avec un dictionnaire je ne voyais pas de quoi tu parlais étant donné que je n'étais pas au courant du match. Je ne m'intéresse qu'à la coupe du monde he, he. D'ailleurs c'est presque bientôt, avec notre ami K'naan et son Wavin' Flag (j'aime bien la chanson). :)

Posted by Mihajasoa at 8:20pm, 22 Mar 2010

@Teri :)

Posted by athallie at 5:05pm, 22 Mar 2010

@Mihajasoa : je pensais que tu parlais de foot, ce jour là le Real Madrid jouait contre le Sporting. ;)

Posted by Vic! at 12:04pm, 22 Mar 2010

EVERYONE IS WRITING SUCH LOVELY THINGS ABOUT YOU TIM, IT JUST SHOWS THAT KEANE ARE THE BEST. NOBODY ELSE THINKS LIKE YOU GUYS, OR WRITES MUSIC LIKE YOU GUYS, KEEP BRINGING IT ON, LOTS AND LOTS OF LOVE, KATHLEEN IN KENT xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Posted by Kathleen at 9:26am, 22 Mar 2010

los amo

Posted by i_keane at 3:33am, 22 Mar 2010

Hey, Tim ! I really love this thing about the book club, I mean, there's an interaction and that's so damn good ! I see you like those dense books with psychological content and above all the stuff, books about people. Really interesting... By the way, I'm also a slow reader and I don't think that's so bad 'cause we keep the story alive in our minds for much longer and the book gets more interesting when it's part of our life for long periods... Thanks for your music, much love from Rio ! :)

Posted by Juliana Scaffa at 1:56am, 22 Mar 2010

HOLA ATHY! ES BUENO VOLVER A LAS RAICES! HAY COSAS QUE NUNCA CAMBIAN...

Posted by Teresa Kleppe at 1:14am, 22 Mar 2010

WE´VE GOT KEANEMUSIC.COM

Posted by Teresa Kleppe at 1:12am, 22 Mar 2010

@Teresa : i Hola ! i Qué placer verte aqui ! Un abrazo muy fuerte para ti.

Posted by athallie at 9:48pm, 21 Mar 2010

ahi sorry x todo lo que dije lo siento!! perdon x favorr!! los rre kieroo y me encanta su musica como siempree!!!.. no me arrepiento de nadaa!! kisses Eve!!:-)) PS: wow que libro?

Posted by eve-keane at 8:46pm, 21 Mar 2010

Vic:I can't figure out what you were talking about even with a dictionary. A French translation please, if you don't mind, thanks.

Posted by Mihajasoa at 7:15pm, 21 Mar 2010

I'm very much the same with books, I've got so many(most probally because I can't resist buying all of those in charity shops!) I often pick up one, read a bit of it, and then go onto another. The books I read also have an influence on what I think about life and they give me a good perspective on life itself. Just like music, Keane music especially. Now I know why; Keane songs are written with such meaning and feeling that it is impossible not to take the meanings of them in real life. I hope all those in the world of Keane have a good week, and I can't wait till the Forest Tour to start.

Posted by doraf at 6:35pm, 21 Mar 2010

LIFE IS LIKE A MADHOUSE.

Posted by Teresa Kleppe at 4:05pm, 21 Mar 2010

@ TIM RICE-OXLEY…My husband and I were talking about the books that you say influence your songwriting. I should say that my husband (Australian+ happy-go-lucky) and I (American) have opposite viewpoints about Philip Roth’s personal attitudes on the American dream. However, we both totally agree that the concept of “values? is extremely subjective. My husband and I are both 10 years younger than you so we have less life experience to factor into our perspectives. That said, we both sense that your quest to maintain your own system of values while/whilst remaining open to various ideas (that may threaten them) is causing you unnecessary angst. In my opinion, you’re struggling too much with your desire for adventure vs. your desire to be tied down. You remind me of the George Bailey character in the 1946 film It’s A Wonderful Life. The moral of that story is that once you have a family (a wife and child/children) you can find the most amazing paradise in the company of your loved-ones at home. But in order to find that paradise you need to accept the boundaries (not confines) of the life that you’ve chosen. I sense that you have a very hard time making decisions, but I have noticed that once you make a decision you are resolute. My advice to you is to make the decision to be farmer/songwriter/musician/singer/family-man and to embrace the paradise that it brings. My husband and I are young and childless so we think it’s fine to runaround the earth looking for paradise…but we know our fast pace will lessen as we age. We accept that fact and will make the necessary changes to our lifestyles in the future. Time is on everyone’s side, rather than the enemy, and happiness comes from within. It may sound trite, but it’s the truth. ~ Sincerely, Zara (NYC) + Alex (Sydney)

Posted by NYC>Sydney at 1:43pm, 21 Mar 2010

Hi ya! Hope you have a relaxing Sunday! (",) When we dream and aspire with humility and prayers on our lips..Yes Our prayers are answered..and so shall be your dreams.. My dear. Tom Stay happy and Celebrate the advent of Spring..Sunday Love ♪♫¸.•*.✿.*•. Rachel ♫¸.•*.✿.*•.♫♪

Posted by RACHEL-RIO-BRAZIL at 12:56pm, 21 Mar 2010

If reading is the secret for your amazing songs... KEEP READING PLEASE!! :-)))) Kisses!!

Posted by cepk1981 at 7:16am, 21 Mar 2010

;D.............!! TIm...!! :D Kisses From Here.....!!

Posted by xXKeane_adiictaXx at 5:07am, 21 Mar 2010

YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!. I passed the exam. I've got a 9 (A) for British Literature and now I have to prepare The American one. I asked the teacher about this book and she told me that It's an interesting one, but I also have to bear in mind the author's Biography and be able to compare and connect the story with his life...so I have to start reading now. Regards. Inés (MENDOZA ARGENTINA)

Posted by Iny at 1:18am, 21 Mar 2010

tim you are the best composer greetings from mexico!

Posted by rubisita at 12:06am, 21 Mar 2010

I'm so excited with this...........!! :D LOVE KEANE...!! =) Kisses fro Mexico..!! :D

Posted by xXKeane_adiictaXx at 11:24pm, 20 Mar 2010

@Mihajasoa : It seems we were not talking about the same thing. lol :p

Posted by Vic! at 10:35pm, 20 Mar 2010

THANK YOU TIM !!! WE LOVE YOU !!!!!!!!! KISSES FROM ARGENTINA =)

Posted by NATY_LOVES KEANE! at 10:00pm, 20 Mar 2010

I'm sorry for you Keane! Good night!

Posted by Mihajasoa at 9:59pm, 20 Mar 2010

Vic! Bad news for England :( sorry; good news for France :) Bravo!

Posted by Mihajasoa at 9:57pm, 20 Mar 2010

Merci beaucoup Rachel! Il a plu, à vrai dire. Grosse bise, porte toi bien et à plus tard ma chère Rachel.

Posted by Mihajasoa at 9:55pm, 20 Mar 2010

Love Philip Roth too.Remindes me Ewan McEwan . Amazing,tragic and great writers xx

Posted by kari from spain at 7:57pm, 20 Mar 2010

Tim : always I really love your books summarises, talking about under the iron sea is a very deep EP and crystal ball is one of the songs that I like to enjoy also atlantic and hamurg song. I have to read this book!

Posted by tomandflopy at 7:52pm, 20 Mar 2010

@Mihajasoa : Hopefully Sporting! =)

Posted by Vic! at 7:23pm, 20 Mar 2010

tim sexie :$ i love u! i love this book ♥:D

Posted by agoss at 6:38pm, 20 Mar 2010

Como todo lo que hacen me encanta esta idea del club de lectura, en realidad queria agradecer a Tim, por que gracias a el descubri este maravilloso mundo del lector del que no he podido despegarme desde el primer Tim's book. Gracias de nuevo por enseñarme a disfuitar tantas historias tan maravillosas que de otro modo no se podrian apreciar tan intima y fielmente como con los detalles narrados por el autor.

Posted by lunita1981 at 5:12pm, 20 Mar 2010

@olenenok : Thank you very much, it is magnificent ! I am in love with our earth. Happy week-end to you !

Posted by athallie at 5:04pm, 20 Mar 2010

Hi again, i just wanted to add something. This is an inspiring video I found some time ago thanks to one girl. And I'd like to share it with all of you. Hopefully, it can bring you some bright emotions. Thank you once again, and happy weekend to everyone :-) The link: http://www.thesecret.tv/planet-earth/

Posted by olenenok at 4:57pm, 20 Mar 2010

Thank you Tim ! It is very interesting, Atlantic and Crystal Ball are among my Keane's favourite songs. They are superb. I hope one day you will play Atlantic in Paris, it would be a dream because i never heard it in live. I put this book on my big waiting list of books to read. @olenenok : i like your comment too.

Posted by athallie at 4:56pm, 20 Mar 2010

listening to Love Is The End... It's been eight years since.. I did'nt have the courage to say good-bye.....in the end..I was robbed of the opportunity...a sort of tragedy in itself... no chance to say a final I Love You..a final Thank You..for all she had done... I suppose in the end..things end the way they are suppose to ..the way they are meant to be....

Posted by nina at 3:58pm, 20 Mar 2010

@olenenok: I liked what you wrote. You`re so right :)

Posted by Noelia at 3:57pm, 20 Mar 2010

Hello Tim. Firstly, I'd like to thank you for all these wonderful blogs you're keeping. This is truly amazing to be able to know what inspires a person whose songs are close to your heart as well. Um, I probably cannot say that I am a big reader or such intelligent person, but I really like to read sometimes. And now I have to read more educational books (for studying). You know, it's true, creation is not an easy thing. Usually, only the lines filled with our feelings and attitude to it are those ones filled with depth. It's just impossible to sit down and make something if you didn't or don't feel it. But inspiration is a fragile thing at the same time. You never know when it comes to you or when it disappears. And i'm very glad to be here with other people sharing their views and thoughts. Me thinks, if you don't know something, it shouldn't upset you, because it's so great that there are many things you haven't discovered yet or known about. It means you can live to learn more, and it keeps you alive so to speak. As someone of great minds said: I live whilst I don't stop wondering. (Sorry, I can't recall the exact quote, but the meaning is correct hopefully). Wondering about things around, and life in the whole. While the world around surprises us and keeps us interested in it, we want to live farther... So, I'm wishing you many many unforgettable moments when you can feel alive, as if you're flying without wings... Sincerely and with gratitude.

Posted by olenenok at 3:32pm, 20 Mar 2010

..If you want to play a star, smile for moon. To feel that the life is beautiful, walking through the street. For you to discover that a sun exists inside of you. For you to feel happy to each dawn and to know that the Love is the larger reason... to live. But if you don't have a love, that you never let to die in you, the search... the desire of finding it. Have of everything, a little... and be happy! Nice weekend for you, my dear Tom. A hug in your heart... kisses and love...you are loved, Rachel ♥

Posted by RACHEL-RIO-BRAZIL at 3:13pm, 20 Mar 2010

Bonjour Mihajasoa! Bon Printemps ....Je vous souhaite un week-end de fantaisies.. Avec Tendresse ++++ bises ღ Rachel

Posted by RACHEL-RIO-BRAZIL at 3:02pm, 20 Mar 2010

Thanks a lot for the very interesting review Tim. I'm sure the book is very interesting but if it's really depressing, well, err, :(.You also engage emotionally with music. It translates in your songs- in Stop for a Minute for instance- we're the happy recipients. Thanks. As regards the title American Pastoral, it's lovely, but a little bit soft for the song, isn't it ? By the way, time to use your very efficient Crystall Ball - you knew Oasis would win; artits have a kind of strange intuition. So, who's going to win tonight ? Good luck! Olé olé olé olé! Olé! Olé!

Posted by Mihajasoa at 2:56pm, 20 Mar 2010

THANKS TIM. YOU´RE MI IDOL. I LOVE SO MUCH!! LOVE FROM ARGENTINA BUENOS AIRES

Posted by yesica at 2:05pm, 20 Mar 2010

Wow, so cool to know how Crystal Ball was born! Will read it.

Posted by picklepine at 1:42pm, 20 Mar 2010

Grazie Tim per questi aggiornamenti sui libri che hai letto , sono contenta di sentirti e mi piace questa tua passione per la lettura, oltre ad essere un eccellente musicista sei anche una persona di cultura e ciò mi fà aumentare la stima che nutro per te! Sei una persona intelligente e matura e ti auguro di avere sempre tutto l' amore che meriti dalle persone a te più care! Ti mando un abbraccio, un salutone da Sabrina from Catania, Sicilia!!!

Posted by Sabrina v. at 1:33pm, 20 Mar 2010

Hi Tim, me thinks I might find this book a bit hard going but will give it a try. Love to all you guys, Kathleen in Kent xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Posted by Kathleen at 11:14am, 20 Mar 2010

Always very pleased to hear KEANE/EC this morning on RTL2 (06:58)... But as much as I love songs from H&F or UTIS, I also enjoy your latest musical escapade and so I can't wait to listen to the catchy SFAM featuring K'Naan on French Radios... Congrats again for this "Duo de charme", that's a subtil and lovely mix !!!... By the way, l'homme dispose d'une incroyable source de sagesse dans les réflexions et les enseignements des Anciens, les intellectuels refont sans cesse le monde par le débat d'idées et chacun y met de sa patte... Meow ! Pourtant l'humanité est toujours aussi imparfaite... Zut ! Anyway, Thanks & Kudos to KEANE for their positive attitude in so many subjects... Fits you very well → "L'idéal de la vie n'est pas l'espoir de devenir parfait, c'est la volonté d'être toujours meilleur" Ralph WALDO EMERSON.

Posted by Agnes(Fr-15/07/2007) at 10:02am, 20 Mar 2010

I find it! It's 10 euro this book, well, I will buy it and read it in my way to Prague - my 4 days vacation, my 6 month savings (touching, isn't?) -, I red the others, some I like, some... not very much. I like to read books recommended by others, to see they're reaction and then the effect of that book on me. Anyway, as the song say... in this crazy life and through this crazy times, It's you, you make me sing! Love always,

Posted by gina d at 7:32am, 20 Mar 2010

@ FRANKIE...I've never eaten BBQ shrimp and I'm sure I never will in the future. When I was becoming a teenager (the most formative year in my life) terrorists crashed planes into the World Trade Center towers killing three people that I loved very much. My attitude was shaped by the loss, the pain, the anger and the forgiveness that I felt. I consider myself a bit militant mostly because I'm a New Yorker. My husband is thoroughly Australian and he's as sweet/cuddly as a fluffy puppy...so your logic makes no sense...

Posted by NYC>Sydney at 1:56am, 20 Mar 2010

tim you are mi idol¡ :)

Posted by PIERO at 1:28am, 20 Mar 2010

* oops for the typo. I'm 23 years old (not 24)

Posted by NYC>Sydney at 12:41am, 20 Mar 2010

There are so many revolutionary novels that disturb me in a good way (1984 by George Orwell comes to mind) but Philip Roth’s writing disturbs me in the worst way. I feel that Roth is relatively closed minded for a modern writer. His values are so outdated and dogmatic. Roth is an old man that cherishes the American dream as if it’s ideals will save us all from corruption. I’m a 24 year old American and my perception of the American dream is that it’s a festering cancer that feeds on oppression and manifests the fear of what is not easily understood. Mr. Roth’s imaginings create 2-dimensional worlds and his writing manages to trivialize almost everything that I care about. American Pastoral trivializes righteous protest…thus, I detest Roth’s representation of the 60’s. My generation was taught to view the 60s as an amazingly stunning era of American catharsis…mainly due to youth culture’s righteous protest (YAY!!!!). As a young person I believe that the 60s revolution was the greatest time in American history and I wish my generation could have more of that revolutionary spirit…but I digress. Back to the subject of Roth’s crap imitation of life…The Human Stain is the most offensive novel I’ve ever read (and I really like offensive novels like Steps by Jerzy Kosinski…sick, sick, SICK!). Roth completely trivializes the complex beauty/benefit of mixing different ethnicities. I’m not prepared to label Roth as a racist, but I’m disappointed in his horrible portrayal of Coleman Silk. As a multiracial American who is often mistaken for a white person because of my straight hair/green eyes/pale skin combo, I feel that I have a lot in common with actor Wentworth Miller. However I’m sad that Miller played Coleman Silk in the film adaptation because Roth has no idea how to portray the subject of racial mixing with any compassion or realism. If we all adopted Roth’s beloved values we’d be the walking dead. F the American dream! ~ Sincerely, Zara (NYC)

Posted by NYC>Sydney at 12:10am, 20 Mar 2010

HELOISA, ISA FROM BRASIL, SAO PAULO ****** HI TIM! I enjoy much the way you describe the content of the books you read... I wrote to you yesterday, here on this site: "I´ve just come back here to give a marvelous book tip to Tim: The Elegance of the Hedgehog, from the French female author, Muriel Barbery. I can´t stop reading it!", And it´s true, ? am not sure you already had read or made any comment here, anyway, here it goes my recommendation, and I bet you won´t be sorry about it, it´s really a GRAT book. Thank you for the post and all the best! I do hope you can keep with this session here, I like it much! :.) LOTS OF LOVE TO YOU ALL, MY FAVOURITE BAND! XXXXXXX

Posted by isa at 11:40pm, 19 Mar 2010

Thanks, Tim !... Seems like this one is definitely the most depressing of the serie but I've read a very interesting interview of the author in a French newspaper and it seems that this terrible story was also a way for him to put his country on a kind of trial... Anyway, the tragic fate of this man can also be summed up to this Paulo COELHO quote "A un moment donné de notre existence, nous perdons la maîtrise de notre vie qui se trouve dès lors gouvernée par le destin. C'est là qu'est la plus grande imposture du monde"... Lots of love, Good weekend & Night-night☺!... "Nous croyons conduire le destin, mais c'est toujours lui qui nous mène" DIDEROT.

Posted by Agnes(Fr-15/07/2007) at 11:27pm, 19 Mar 2010

Thanks Tim. Sounds like my kind of book, will definitely be buying it tomorrow, especially knowing that UTIS lyrics are linked to it. I love it that you're such a deep thinker - a man after my own heart XXXX

Posted by jo-anna at 10:24pm, 19 Mar 2010

hey Tim any chance of a techy book mark so that i can follow the review without getting the lines of sentences mixed up? cheers

Posted by hbrubout at 9:38pm, 19 Mar 2010

Tim, it seems UTIS had intense bad and good influences. For me your best album. Thanks for sharing your favorite books. See you.

Posted by roosy at 9:22pm, 19 Mar 2010

Hey guys ! Why don't you come at Ancienne Belgique in Brussels ? It could be so great ! :( Love you ♥♥♥

Posted by coum19 at 9:10pm, 19 Mar 2010

Sounds like an interesting book! Thanks Tim so much for sharing!!! LOVE YOU KEANE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by mislynny at 8:00pm, 19 Mar 2010

Thanks for this blog, Tim. I like your choice this time although "domestic terrorism" ( I googled the author and the book) - ouch. Roth should know it. I think I'll start with Leaving a Doll's House, written by his ex-wife, first. It's always interesting to know the influences and inspirations behind a great song or album. I really appreciate the way you are sharing your thoughts here and I'm looking forward to hear about the inspiration behind other songs /like SFAM/ one day. Take care.

Posted by Miss Teake at 7:53pm, 19 Mar 2010

Now I wanna read this book! I'm always into obscure reading material. You should read James Patterson's book. He's nuts!

Posted by annie nyc at 7:28pm, 19 Mar 2010

It sounds like a great book! It's interesting to see how it influenced Crystal Ball, too! :) Thanks Tim! All my love, Jenny

Posted by Keanerocks7 at 6:42pm, 19 Mar 2010

ohhh thank you Tim, it sounds really interesting! :-) *love from Mexico*

Posted by yessicachaplin23 at 6:26pm, 19 Mar 2010

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::up s!! it is 11:52 am!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!;::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::KEANE RULES!!!!!:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::.......... ...................................................................... ..................TIM, TOM AND RICH!!!!!!!

Posted by laurapinkeane at 5:52pm, 19 Mar 2010

My opinion is: the slower you read a book, the better you enjoy it..

Posted by mirror mirror at 5:51pm, 19 Mar 2010

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::.............. ...................................................................... .............................................i´ll read this boOk!! tiim u are sO cute!!!!!so handsome!!!!:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::...................... ...................................................................... .........................................i lOve your eyes!!!!::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::............................ ................................. frOm mexico!! 11:48 pm!!!::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::mexico loves keane!!!!!!::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡ ¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡i´m a keaner!!!!!!!::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Posted by laurapinkeane at 5:49pm, 19 Mar 2010

Thank you Tim, thanks for sharing the books you read with us! If I can get this one, I`m gonna read it. I LOVE UTIS, I deeply love the lyrics..They make me feel better when I feel bad. Crystall ball is one of my favourite songs, it would be really cool to read the book where the inspiration to write it came from. Lots of love from Argetina.

Posted by Noelia at 5:36pm, 19 Mar 2010

Woow tim really I admire you as pianist composer and for my serious a marvellous writer! Woow under the iron sea is .. my favorite album!! * good now in a rainy day as today I am going to listen sunshine jaja, good I love my babies and return to Argentinaa! Argentina Mendoza Jim €

Posted by keane_8@hotmail.com at 5:08pm, 19 Mar 2010

I remember, you talked about the darkness of the 2nd cd... But, that feeling brought sensational songs, :D... A short time ago, I read a phrase, and i linked with you... "If you were free of all fear. Do you know, what would happen? You would do exactly what you want doing". (Krishnamurti) Los quiero, guys! ♥ ♫

Posted by may87ale at 5:02pm, 19 Mar 2010

Thank you, Jim (Ohio)!

Posted by Gudrun (Austria) at 4:40pm, 19 Mar 2010

@Gudrun, lol I am with you. Maybe Tim needs to read more books like this if it means he can create more classics like UTIS and H and F. I do the same thing, I play the first two cd's to forget about the latest "excursions" as you say. It reminds me of how great they truly were and hopefully will be again.

Posted by jhanna02 at 4:31pm, 19 Mar 2010

Hi Tim--American Pastoral sounds like another excellent selection! I tend to have the same trouble with reading (short attention span, slow reading pace, and generally losing interest in books I've started to read so I don't go back to them for months sometimes) but I'm going to give this one a try. Thank you!

Posted by Britstar at 4:09pm, 19 Mar 2010

Hi Tim: Thanks, thanks, you very much for sharing, and... may I sugget you read??? The Catcher in the Rye (Philip Roth), Infinite Jest (Philip Roth), and The Lost Symbol,(Dan Brown). Excellents!!!! THANKS A LOT MISS U!!!!!! Natalia ARGENTINA

Posted by natalia1234 at 3:46pm, 19 Mar 2010

Hello Tim! Is always nice hear from you.I haven't read anything by Roth in many years. I read "Portnoy's complaint" because who didn't. I remember that one of my English professors went to graduate school with him. I know that Roth is a serious author, one of the literary lions. But I just haven't read his books. This was such a bleak picture of American life. Held me spellbound, but really not what I want to read about, most of the time. It was amazing to watch the Swede's life totally disintegrate. I wish you a very nice weekend filled with joy.Thanks for your review.Supersize huge from RIO XXX

Posted by RACHEL-RIO-BRAZIL at 2:54pm, 19 Mar 2010

"it's so psychologically complex and you never know what is going to happen next." Thank you Tim for recommending this book! These days I've been reading some books about that kind of things, which really catch my mind to keep thinking about how the story goes, often, they surprise me so much with the unexpected human's activity, spirit, etc. Everything seems mysterious but is found they're following the law, which we hardly can imagine mostly but the authors. That's one of the charms of the books, I guess. Syrinx (China)

Posted by Syrinx at 2:34pm, 19 Mar 2010

Thank you, Tim. I will definitely put this one on my list. It was interesting to read about how the book influenced some of your writing for Under The Iron Sea. I love the dark and deeply emotional songs on the album. Have a good weekend! Annette x

Posted by NET at 2:30pm, 19 Mar 2010

hello tim!!! excelent!!!:) parece que esta buena la historia!!:) keane for ever in my heart!! :) mely zury!! :) luck!!!

Posted by Melisa at 2:27pm, 19 Mar 2010

Morning, Tim! After reading a quite a number of Paul Auster's books, thanks to your turning me on to him, I have gone back for more. Really enjoy his characters and stories...I will pick up Roth's book, too.....after all, Atlantic is my very favorite Keane song. Thanks again, Tim. ....Hey, when is that Spring US tour??????? Will it happen?????????? Eager, as always....Sherry, Michigan, USA.

Posted by Sherry W. at 2:04pm, 19 Mar 2010

YES, Mr. Rice-Oxley, the other day I put UTIS into my car´s cd player to forget about the latest ...ahem excursions , and the passion and intensity revertebrating from it and Philip Roth´s books are the same; I appreciate both very much. May I suggest you read "Flowers for Algernon" by Daniel Keyes before you engage for the next album? I´d gladly send it to you if I only knew how.

Posted by Gudrun (Austria) at 1:52pm, 19 Mar 2010

Thanks, Tim! Now I wanna read that book as soon as I can! Have a lovely weekend!

Posted by simoninha (brazil) at 1:49pm, 19 Mar 2010

I love hearing the back-story on the song writing process, Tim. Thank you very much for sharing! :-)

Posted by April Jo at 1:48pm, 19 Mar 2010

WOW Interesting plot, Thank you for the suggestion, in fact today I'm sitting for British Literature at college and I 've chosen the play "Waiting for Godot" by Samuel Beckett, If I pass this one, I have to sit for American Literature so I'll keep this book in mind as a special topic, of course I need to read it first; I'm glad that the song Crystal Ball was inpired by this book, so It will easier to understand it. I really like books that touches thing in real life such as human action and human nature. THANK YOU. Inés (MENDOZA ARGENTINA). (I'm so nervuos for today's exam!!!!!, Wish me good luck!!!!)

Posted by Iny at 1:44pm, 19 Mar 2010

Ahhh, I'm thrilled with this tip and sure will look for this book, it's fantastic to know about your inspirations. Today I started to read the Michael J. Fox's Always Looking Up: The Adventures of an Incurable Optimist, which is reading to put you UP indeed ;-) . I love him. Please keep us going on your Book Club for a long time, reading is my second love besides music. All the best from The Frog Prince Squad and from Brasil - always

Posted by Beth at 1:35pm, 19 Mar 2010

Exactly Tim, Atlantic is a song based on this book , i understand now the lyrics and music are so passionated in it. Thanks for sharing your favs books during Symmetry Tour.

Posted by rodoprox at 1:31pm, 19 Mar 2010

Hi Tim, thanks for the hint. I'll read this book. I would like to write more but I have to go to work. Have a lovely day, beijos da Regina.

Posted by Regina Brz at 1:24pm, 19 Mar 2010

Both lyrics say much to me... and make me know that I'm not alone in it... your lyrics are so human, these are much more than musics. Thanks

Posted by thadeu at 1:23pm, 19 Mar 2010

I find it very interesting book. The truth is that reading makes you look and think about things that normally do not think. The songs on Under the Iron Sea, I look deep and dark and, frankly, are like a description of the most difficult year of my life .... but all this is over. Thanks for the recommendation of literature.

Posted by Penélope at 1:16pm, 19 Mar 2010

Ah, I have to read this one!!

Posted by Spiralling at 12:54pm, 19 Mar 2010

this sounds really good! :)

Posted by pinocchiorain at 12:52pm, 19 Mar 2010

Interesting! ;-)

Posted by taz at 12:49pm, 19 Mar 2010

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