The Financial Lives of the Poets

By Jess Walter
(Bada Publishing, Paperback, 9788955615999, 440pp.)

Publication Date: January 2011

Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover, Paperback, Paperback

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Selected by Indie Booksellers for the November 2009 Indie Next List
“In Jess Walter's best yet, feckless financial reporter Matt Prior has lost his job, is six days away from losing his house, and suspects his wife is courting an affair. Walter's own obvious empathy for the human condition will have you pulling for Prior and his screwy, shady, last-chance scheme for solvency. A laugh-out-loud serio-comic masterpiece!”
-- Ranae Burdette, Eagle Harbor Book Company, Bainbridge Island, WA

Selected amoung The 10 Best Books of 2009 by TIME, THE FINANCIAL LIVES OF THE POETS by Jess Walter, the author of The Zero (a finalist for the National Book Award), Citizen Vince (a winner of the Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Novel). This extremely funny, sad and satirical, yet compassionate portrait of reality of life in contemporary America. Korean edition translated by O Sei Won. In Korean. Distributed by Tsai Fong Books, Inc.

Wednesday, Dec 23, 2009

Many of the picks from Fresh Air's book critic look back at tough times from earlier eras, or lives upended by disaster. The best books of the year include a work of nonfiction that reveals the hidden fantasy land of a founder of American industry, and a novel that doesn't apologize for the bad behavior of its characters. Plus, a bonus mystery pick. More at

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Reviews from
From Pacific Northwest Inlander, Spokane, Washington

Matt Prior is the protagonist of The Financial Lives of the Poets and a complete figment of Walter's imagination. Walter has taken pains to ensure Matt Prior's life is as shitty as a well-educated white American male's can be.

Conversation Starters from


  1. Given their different ages and social worlds, what explains Matt Prior's willingness to befriend Jamie and Skeet at the local 7-Eleven?

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