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Sideways [Paperback]

Rex Pickett
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
Price: 12.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Product details

  • Paperback: 300 pages
  • Publisher: St Martin's Press (1 Feb 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312342519
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312342517
  • Product Dimensions: 20.9 x 14.3 x 2.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 82,442 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


SIDEWAYS is the journey of two men, Miles and Jack, as they leave Las Vegas en route for Santa Ynez and Jack's impending nuptials. For Jack the weekend represents his final days of freedom, while for Miles, who has divorced his wife, lost his money and his passion for life, the week long road trip becomes an opportunity to evaluate his past, future and self. A raucous road trip complete with fine wine, SIDEWAYS is a thought-provoking and often hilarious novel about men, friendships and human relationships.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "We were drinking a memory" 2 Oct 2004
By A Customer
Rex Pickett, in his novel Sideways has probably created two of the most endearingly loveable characters of recent years. Both men are full of petty denials and insecurities about love, sex and life, but their immutable friendship, and their ability to laugh off their respective troubles, makes for a terribly funny, and heartfelt story as we follow their escapades throughout Santa Ynez wine country.The movie version of Sideways will be released later this month, so it will be interesting to see what director Alexander Payne does with this story. At times, the book seems a little contrived, reading like a budding screenplay, rather than a piece of literary fiction, but the sparkling dialogue and the fabulous descriptions of the local wine growing country will keep most readers entertained. Sideways is unquestionably one of the best "buddy" stories to be released in some time. Also, readers don't have to know anything about wines and wine growing to appreciate the detailed wine tasting elements of this story. Mike Leonard October 04.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ultimately unfulfilling 11 Sep 2012
Ultimately unfulfilling

I think this is sadly one of the rare instances where the consensus is that a film has bettered a novel. I say sadly, because I like everyone else adored the film on so many levels and so was hoping for greater things that I actually got served. I use a vague wine metaphor there because I think it draw the novel quite accurately. You might, for example, have an average piece of terroir producing average grapes, if you place those grapes into the hands of a master vintner, then the results can be sublime. Whilst Pickett is surely nothing more than an average Hollywood writer, certainly the production team that re-worked the novel into a much tighter, much funnier and much more cohesive script are the real ones who deserve the credit here.

I actually found the slack pace of the novel, the endless reaching for the thesaurus and the quite unpolished nature of the work quite annoying in the end. The characters weren't very well drawn, they were loose and quite transparent, the plot was contrived and excessive in parts and the whole project really lacked a sense of togetherness. Again I would draw on a wine analogy and say that the whole book project was quite sloppily put together and could have used some secondary fermentation to bring it to its full potential.

Would I recommend the book? No, ultimately not. Not unless it was in the bargain bin. I would instead, purchase a copy of the DVD and a bottle of Zinfandel with the difference.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every bit as entertaining as the film 31 Dec 2005
By Chris Pearson VINE VOICE
I loved this book. The characters are as large as life, I laughed out loud, and learnt something about wine. Although I read it after seeing the film, the screen version takes nothing away from the enjoyment of this novel. Oh, and by the way the ending differs from the screen version.....
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
...or so the tabloid headlines might have read, in the weeks after Sideways (the movie) was released and the public inevitably sought out the book of the film. I was among them in being enchanted by Paul Giamatti's comically depressed and lovably amoral portrayal of Miles, the book's protagonist, and Thomas Haden Church's equally good casting as his equally amoral (yet somewhat more upbeat) best-friend Jack. So after contemplating what kind of wonderful, witty and wine-infused novel could have spawned such a timeless classic, I purchased the above.

Big mistake.

"Rex Pickett," the book's dust-jacket warns ominously, "is a screenwriter who lives in Los Angeles. This is his first novel." Alarm bells immediately started to ring; but it could be a masterpiece, I told myself, the first of many - it could be a debut novel like Jonathan Safran Foer's "Everything is Illuminated" or Alex Garland's "The Beach".

It isn't.

Rex Pickett is quite obviously a screenwriter trying to write a novel. His dialogue is authentic but over-simplified, in the way that Hollywood dialogue often is. At times, the conversations sound so real that Pickett must simply have sat in a bar and eavesdropped and written down everything he heard.

The rest of the novel?
Read more ›
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5.0 out of 5 stars Loved the movie, loved the book! 2 May 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is different to the film in many ways. You should be aware of that! Some aspects are radically different! I had not read the book before the film but if you are the same and only sampled the movie, despite the film having made significant changes to Rex Pickett's original story, they are equally as good. Do buy this, and the follow up Vertcial.
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