Wednesday, 13 August 2014

On the Road by Jack Kerouac

I first met Dean not long after my wife and I split up.

A little conflict, but not reason to care. The second sentence is much better:

I had just gotten over a serious illness that I won't bother to talk about, except that it had something to do with the miserably weary split-up and my feeling that everything was dead.

At least this book doesn't begin in a car or a character traveling towards a plot.

First thing said:

"Now, darling, here we are in New York and although I haven’t quite told you everything that I was thinking about when we crossed Missouri and especially at the point when we passed the Booneville reformatory which reminded me of my jail problem, it is absolutely necessary now to postpone all those leftover things concerning our personal lovethings and at once begin thinking of specific worklife plans . . ." 

This dialogue reveals some plot points and reveals a character who can't keep quiet. The first two sentences  work well together at introducing conflict and character that should pull most readers in.

This is part of the series: the top 100 novels from Daniel S. Burt's book called Novel 100, the top 100 novels of all time. There is debate of course as to what should be on that list, but his opinions are as good as any. On the Road comes in at the 91st greatest novel of all time.

Verdict: Pass

Theodore Moracht

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