The Gift

The Gift

A Novel

Book - 2003
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Baker & Taylor
Struggling with his family experiences and an unremarkable career, Phillip endeavors to bring a spiritual edge into his relationship with his wife and attempts to compete with his more financially impressive friends.

HARPERCOLL

Phillip has a lot on his mind. At home, in his unnecessarily large, excessively expensive house, he is attempting to become a Taoist

master of love with his wife, Alice, but his quest is forever being interrupted by the requests of his twin daughters -- "Can we have a pony, please?"; "We want to go to boarding school." At work, in his shed/office at the bottom of the garden, between countless games of Minesweeper and FreeCell, Phillip is trying to pay the mortgage by writing the instruction manuals to Korean bread-making machines. And at parties where he is concerned that he is not taken seriously -- he is variously mistaken as a waiter and a rhinoplastic surgeon -- Phillip tells the world he is, in fact, a screenwriter.

Above all, Phillip is obsessing about his best friends, Barry and Sean. They are rich, more successful, and, most worryingly, they give great presents. Their gifts are always exquisite -- a full set of Italian crockery, a handmade corkscrew from Venice; they give them on birthdays, at parties, and quite often for no reason whatsoever; and, increasingly, these presents break all bounds of generosity.

They are gifts that hurt a man's pride. And they can never be matched. Which doesn't mean Phillip won't try. . . .



Blackwell North Amer
Phillip has a lot on his mind. At home, in his unnecessarily large, excessively expensive house in south London, he is attempting to become a Taoist master of love with his wife, Alice, but his quest is forever being interrupted by requests of his twin daughters - 'Can we have a pony, please?', 'We want to go to boarding school.' At work, in his shed/office at the bottom of the garden, between countless games of Minesweeper and FreeCell, Phillip is trying to pay the mortgage by writing the instruction manuals. And, at parties where he is concerned that he is not taken seriously - he is variously mistaken as a waiter and a nose doctor - Phillip tells the world he is in fact a screenwriter.
Above all, Phillip is worrying about his best friends Barry and Sean. They are rich, more successful than him and, most worryingly, they give great presents. Their gifts are always exquisite - a full set of Italian crockery, a handmade corkscrew from Venice; they give them on birthdays, at parties and quite often for no reason whatsoever; and, increasingly, these presents break all bounds of generosity. They are gifts that hurt a man's pride. They are gifts that Phillip is going to have to match or, maybe, even better.

Publisher: New York : Fourth Estate, 2003, c2002
Edition: 1st U.S. ed
ISBN: 9780007157730
0007157738
Branch Call Number: F FLU
Characteristics: 312 p. ; 22 cm

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