Internationally bestselling novelist and American icon Tom Robbins's long-awaited tale of his wild life and times, both at home and around the globe.
Tom Robbins's warm, wise, and wonderfully weird novels — including , and —provide an entryway into the frontier of his singular imagination. Madcap but sincere, pulsating with strong social and philosophical undercurrents, his irreverent classics have introduced countless readers to hitchhiking cowgirls, born-again monkeys, a philosophizing can of beans, exiled royalty, and problematic redheads.
In , Robbins turns that unparalleled literary sensibility inward, weaving together stories of his unconventional life — from his Appalachian childhood to his globe-trotting adventures — told in his unique voice, which combines the sweet and sly, the spiritual and earthy. The grandchild of Baptist preachers, Robbins would become, over the course of half a century, a poet interruptus, a soldier, a meteorologist, a radio DJ, an art-critic-turned-psychedelic-journeyman, a world-famous novelist, and a counterculture hero, leading a life as unlikely, magical, and bizarre as those of his quixotic characters.
Robbins offers intimate snapshots of Appalachia during the Great Depression, the West Coast during the sixties' psychedelic revolution, international roving before Homeland Security monitored our travels, and New York publishing when it still relied on trees.
Written with the big-hearted comedy and mesmerizing linguistic invention for which Robbins is known, is an invitation into the private world of a literary legend.
Known for his meaty seriocomic novels — expansive works that are simultaneously lowbrow and highbrow — Tom Robbins has also published over the years a number of short pieces, predominantly nonfiction. His travel articles, essays, and tributes to actors, musicians, sex kittens, and thinkers have appeared in publications ranging from to , from to the , and . A generous sampling, collected here for the first time and including works as diverse as scholarly art criticism and some decidedly untypical country-music lyrics, offers a rare sweeping overview of the eclectic sensibility of an American original.
Whether he is rocking with the Doors, depoliticizing Picasso’s , lamenting the angst-ridden state of contemporary literature, or drooling over tomato sandwiches and a species of womanhood he calls “the genius waitress,” Robbins’s briefer writings often exhibit the same five traits that perhaps best characterize his novels: an imaginative wit, a cheerfully brash disregard for convention, a sweetly nasty eroticism, a mystical but keenly observant eye, and an irrepressible love of language.
Embedded in this primarily journalistic compilation are a couple of short stories, a sheaf of largely unpublished poems, and an off-beat assessment of our divided nation. And wherever we open , we’re apt to encounter examples of the intently serious playfulness that percolates from the mind of a self-described “romantic Zen hedonist” and “stray dog in the banquet halls of culture.”
A Children's Book About Beer?
Yes, believe it or not — but is also a book for adults, and bear in mind that it's the work of maverick bestselling novelist Tom Robbins, inter-nationally known for his ability to both seriously illuminate and comically entertain.
Once upon a time (right about now) there was a planet (how about this one?) whose inhabitants consumed thirty-six billion gallons of beer each year (it's a fact, you can Google it). Among those affected, each in his or her own way, by all the bubbles, burps, and foam, was a smart, wide-eyed, adventurous kindergartner named Gracie; her distracted mommy; her insensitive dad; her non-conformist uncle; and a magical, butt-kicking intruder from a world within our world.
Populated by the aforementioned characters — and as charming as it may be subversive— involves readers, young and old, in a surprising, far-reaching investigation into the limits of reality, the transformative powers of children, and, of course, the ultimate meaning of a tall, cold brewski.
Jitterbug Perfume is an epic.
Which is to say, it begins in the forests of ancient Bohemia and doesn't conclude until nine o'clock tonight (Paris time).
It is a saga as well. A saga must have a hero, and the hero of this one is a janitor with a missing bottle.
The bottle is blue, very, very old, and embossed with the image of a goat-horned god.
If the liquid in the bottle actually is the secret essence of the universe, as some folks seem to think, it had better be discovered soon because it is leaking and there is only a drop or two left.
The whooping crane rustlers are girls. Young girls. Cowgirls, as a matter of fact, all “bursting with dimples and hormones”—and the FBI has never seen anything quite like them. Yet their rebellion at the Rubber Rose Ranch is almost overshadowed by the arrival of the legendary Sissy Hankshaw, a white-trash goddess literally born to hitchhike, and the freest female of them all.
Freedom, its prizes and its prices, is a major theme of Tom Robbins’s classic tale of eccentric adventure. As his robust characters attempt to turn the tables on fate, the reader is drawn along on a tragicomic joyride across the badlands of sexuality, wild rivers of language, and the frontiers of the mind.