A Harvard Grad's Book About Harvard

Petey E. Menz

On Monday, Flyby caught up with Eric A. Kester '08, author of a book recounting his freshman year at Harvard.

Kester, a contributor to The Crimson during his time as an undergrad, said that he hoped his book, (aptly) named "That Book about Harvard," would help shed light on a school often shrouded in "mystique" and show both the good and bad of the institution.

"[I wanted to show] how there are really good people there; how there are not-so-good people there; how it can be a great education; how it can also be not-so-great a place to learn."

Though the book could be interpreted as a somewhat crude account of the life of a socially-awkward 18-year-old—"one minute you're slouched in your chair spacing out, doing your best to stay awake and not stare at boobs, then the next you're on trial for human rights violations," he joked—it simultaneously seeks to provide life lessons to its readers.

"I hope that the book will sort of serve as a therapy for others who went through what I was going through," Kester said. "That’s really where I think the humor plays an important role, because basically I figured out by the end of my freshman year that if I wanted to survive Harvard, I had to take myself less seriously."

"That Book about Harvard" is set to come out in July, and Kester will return to Cambridge for a book reading at the Coop in September.

CLARIFICATION: The quote, "one minute you're slouched in your chair spacing out...then the next you're on trial for human rights violations," is a passage from Kester's book, not a quote during Flyby's Monday interview.

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