Jack Kerouac : an illustrated biography /

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Main Author: Sandison, David.
Format: Book
Language:English
Published:Chicago, Ill. : Chicago Review Press, 1999.
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Review by Choice Review

Readers cannot seem to get enough pictures of the Beats. Whether they are lolling behind the wheels of old Hudsons and Cadillacs or reciting their poetry in smoky coffeehouses, the Beats retain their fascination for the present generation. Kerouac, the tragically doomed King of the Beats, represents a short-lived period of literary and social protest, and he is more popular now than he was in the 1950s. Sandison's handsome volume follows in the footsteps of Steve Turner's Angelheaded Hipster: A Life of Jack Kerouac (1996); it offers a cursory text that traces Kerouac's travels and rise to fame, supplemented with large, glossy photographs. But the interested reader will have seen almost all of these images before, in other places. In addition, the author has the irritating habit of misspelling people's names. He also describes Kerouac watching several baseball games during a December visit to Lowell, Massachusetts, when hockey might have been more likely. Still, the pictures retain their power, and though this book does not serve any academic purpose, it can respectably grace the coffee tables of erstwhile Beatniks who still dream from their living rooms of going on the road with Jack, Allen, Neal, and the rest of the gang. M. H. Begnal; Pennsylvania State University, University Park Campus

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.

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