An Angle on the World is a brilliant tribute to Bill Barich's extraordinary range as a writer.
Gathering together more than thirty years of work, this book addresses such diverse subjects as a murder trial in the Caribbean, a visit to a juju doctor in Nigeria, and the author's youthful escapades in Italy and the Haight-Ashbury.
As the New York Times put it, "An easy, fluid stylist, Barich writes entertainingly about anything." As a staff writer at the New Yorker, Barich found editorial support for his long form dispatches.
He makes no pretense of being an objective observer.
Instead he's out to capture what Norman Mailer called "the feel of the phenomenon," be it the texture of street life in Belfast or the trails of operating a home for paranoid schizophrenics in San Francisco.
He finds heroes in such unlikely places as San Fernando Valley, where former gang members try to prevent teenagers from killing one another in turf wars. The hallmark of An Angle on the World is its compassion.
Few writers are as gifted as Barich at making people come alive on the page. His portrait of David Milch, the legendary creator of HBO's Deadwood, offers an inside look at an eccentric genius at work.
Here the Grateful Dead's Jerry Garcia is depicted as a real person, not a rock star cliche.
Barich's touch is light, intimate, and acutely aware of our foibles. Whenever he hits the road, whether to London or Barbados, he expresses the sheer joy of being alive.
An Angle on the World is an ideal bedside reader, packed with insight, good humor, and razor-sharp prose that has earned Barich his enviable reputation as a writers' writer.