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Jul 2013
On the Road - Jack Kerouac - Penguin Modern Classics, 2000
* * *
Let us praise Jack Kerouac's mother, who inadvertantly funded the writing of a classic. In the first section, Kerouac is constantly running out of money and waiting for the next fifty dollars from his long-suffering relative (described as his aunt in the book, a typical example of his light fictionalisation). Needless to say, she receives no thanks.

This is the book that defined the beat culture of the fifties, and having read it I am still no wiser as to what its significance was. The name, according to Kerouac, derives from "beatific" and is meant to have religious overtones. I certainly think it is over-rated and less interesting than many people seem to find it.
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