Author(s): Zadie Smith
Alex-Li Tandem sells autographs. A small blip in a huge worldwide network of desire, it is his business to hunt for names on paper, collect them, sell them, occasionally fake them, and all to give the people what they want: a little piece of Fame. But what does Alex want? Only the return of his father, the re-instatement of some kind of all-powerful benevolent God-type-figure, the end of religion, something for his headache, three different girls, infinite grace, and the rare autograph of forties movie actress Kitty Alexander. With fries. The Autograph Man is a deeply funny, existential tour around the hollow things of modernity - celebrity, cinema, and the ugly triumph of symbol over experience. Through London and then New York, Alex is sent on a paper-trail searching for the only autograph that ever mattered to him, resisting the mystical lure of Kabbalah and Zen, and avoiding all collectors, con-men, interfering Rabbis and Bonsai dealers who would put themselves in his path. Pushing against the tide of his generation, Alex-Li is on his way to finding enlightenment, otherwise known as some part of himself that cannot be signed, celebrated or sold... On the longlist for the 2002 Booker Prize.
2002. A trade paperback copy in very good, clean condition.
Winner of Jewish Quarterly Wingate Literary Prize: Fiction 2003. Shortlisted for Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize 2003 and Orange Prize for Fiction 2003.