On The Road - Jack Kerouac

This piece of legendary beat literature shows that it's not about being technically good, but trying hard is what matters. Hmmm. That's probably a little harsh, but the whole thing's about enthusiasm. That's pretty much the style and the message. The protagonist's friend and inspiration, Dean Moriarty, is a selfish, petty-criminal nutcase with infinite enthusiasm, and together they zip back and forth across down-and-out America, leaving a trail of knackered cars and irate women.

It's fun, but I found the style wearing. It's very much an active, scrawling-it-all-down style, which suits the content, but it's something I find hard-going to read. Makes me think of The Catcher in the Rye, for some reason.

Posted 2004-05-03.