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I Have Words to Spend: Reflections of a Small-Town Editor Hardcover – Apr 1991


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Product details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Delacorte Pr; 1st Edition edition (April 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385302894
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385302890
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 14.6 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,701,377 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 30 Dec 1998
Format: Paperback
I really enjoyed the book 'I Have Words to Spend'. I am very interested in Robert Cormier and have read most of his books, but Words to Spend showed a side of him that I never knew. Did you know that he once went through the car wash at 50 miles an hour, that his favorite word is cellophane (pronounced slowly: cel-lo-phane), or that he worries because his handwriting looks like that of a schizophrenic's? Reading this book was like looking through a window into the life of Robert Cormier, my mentor, author extraordinaire. I can just hear the words being spoken in his old, leathery voice, enthralling me with every page. One of these days I ought to go down to the Fitchburg Library and read the rest of those columns...
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Format: Paperback
Opening this book is like opening a window into the life of author Robert Cormier. We find out about his childhood memories, favorite movies, family interactions, and travels. We see Cormier the journalist, who wrote every one of the columns in this book on deadline while juggling the responsibilities of also being a newspaper editor. The columns made me laugh at one turn and cry at the next. He has a way of finding something extraordinary in the everyday details of life. This is a perfect book to keep by your bed to savor over time. I find myself returning to it over and over again. The introductory comments by Cormier's wife are refreshing and give a glimpse of the wonderful relationship they seem to share. Fans of Cormier's work ought to enjoy this book as much as those who are not familiar with his other work. I'd highly recommend that everyone treat themselves to "I Have Words to Spend".
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 5 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Yikes! 30 Dec 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I really enjoyed the book 'I Have Words to Spend'. I am very interested in Robert Cormier and have read most of his books, but Words to Spend showed a side of him that I never knew. Did you know that he once went through the car wash at 50 miles an hour, that his favorite word is cellophane (pronounced slowly: cel-lo-phane), or that he worries because his handwriting looks like that of a schizophrenic's? Reading this book was like looking through a window into the life of Robert Cormier, my mentor, author extraordinaire. I can just hear the words being spoken in his old, leathery voice, enthralling me with every page. One of these days I ought to go down to the Fitchburg Library and read the rest of those columns...
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
A true gem of a book from a wonderful author 31 May 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Opening this book is like opening a window into the life of author Robert Cormier. We find out about his childhood memories, favorite movies, family interactions, and travels. We see Cormier the journalist, who wrote every one of the columns in this book on deadline while juggling the responsibilities of also being a newspaper editor. The columns made me laugh at one turn and cry at the next. He has a way of finding something extraordinary in the everyday details of life. This is a perfect book to keep by your bed to savor over time. I find myself returning to it over and over again. The introductory comments by Cormier's wife are refreshing and give a glimpse of the wonderful relationship they seem to share. Fans of Cormier's work ought to enjoy this book as much as those who are not familiar with his other work. I'd highly recommend that everyone treat themselves to "I Have Words to Spend".
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
The Hobo Philosopher 11 Oct 2011
By Richard E. Noble - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I Have Words to Spend

By Robert Cormier

Book Review

By Richard E. Noble

Robert Cormier is a writer/journalist/columnist from Leominster, Massachusetts. Mr. Cormier who has authored an array of children's Novels which include "I Am the Cheese"; "We All Fall Down" and "Chocolate Wars" also wrote "Now and at the Hour" a rather serious adult novel which I reviewed recently. I liked the man's style of writing so I tried another of his works.

I Have Words to Spend - reflections of a small town editor caught my eye for a number of reasons. It was listed as his only non-fiction. It was an accumulation of newspaper columns. And it was from the "Fitchburg Sentinel and Enterprise." These things attracted me because I too have worked for a small town newspaper. I also write books. I have been a columnist. And Fitchburg, MA is not far from the area where I was raised in Lawrence, MA.

Mr. Cormier also fit my penchant for reading writers who are no longer living. Reading too many modern "live" writers can be detrimental and lead to a disappearance of one's own style and natural writing inclinations. I don't want to give that happenstance any quarter.

Since Mr. Cormier was rather well known at the time, he wrote the column under a pseudonym. He wanted to speak freely and not gain the ire of the community or embarrass anybody. The book was edited by his wife.

It is a very, very nice book. It can very well be called reflections. The columns are simple and down to earth. Mr. Cormier is clearly a small town guy with no grandiose expectations from life. The stories are sensitive, warm, thoughtful and often subtly humorous. The reader will find himself smiling coyly or wearing a little smirk very often. Belly laughs were few but there were some. His story about speeding through the local car wash got to me pretty good.

There are numerous stories about his family and children, especially his youngest daughter.

I also was intrigued by the title. It still has me thinking. What did he mean by having words to spend?

I think it had something to do with his anonymity and maybe for the first time he was not restricted by his subject matter.

The column was considered "human interest" and he could write on whatever he pleased. So now instead of buying and selling his words as he felt he must with his books and novels, he was free to spend his words as he chose.

I feel that it is easy to get trapped as a writer and begin conforming to what the writer thinks my be the expectations of his audience. I think this happens to all artists and most don't like it.

So this may have been a reach or stretch for Mr. Cormier. As far as I am concerned he did just fine.

His page presentation was also interesting. There were one line "paragraphs" everywhere. This gave the impression of a very non-wordy type individual. It was very unusual and clearly a good technique. I liked it. Short, staccato sentences with not many excess words. The point is made ... period.

Richard Noble - The Hobo Philosopher:
"Just Hangin' Out, Ma" Anecdotes - Lawrence, Mass
I Have Words to Spend 15 Aug 2000
By Taylor - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Library Binding Verified Purchase
This is a book out of the ordinary for Cormier, but up to par to say the least. He takes a break from writing wonderful young-adult fiction and compiles his writing from his columns in newspapers around the country. These short stories range from his memories as a child to his memories of becoming a parent and grandparent. He relates the feelings that all of us feel in the words that most of us wish we could say. This book will touch your heart and soul.
As advertised 11 Jan 2014
By Ricky Stephens - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was a gift but it came on time and in the quality it was advertised to be in. I can't speak much on the content of the book itself, since I haven't read it, but I can speak highly of the seller.
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