Fiction Stephen Wright Going Native

ISBN 13: 9780385313865

Going Native

3.58 avg rating
( 620 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780385313865: Going Native

This extraordinary work that was met with both  critical and popular acclaim in hardcover reads like  a frightening, resonant nineties version of Jack  Kerouac's On The Road. Author  Stephen Wright transports readers from the  claustrophobia of the suburbs to the freedom of the open  road and the pursuit of the American dream--or  nightmare--in this remarkable novel that reveals the  darkest side of our civilized society. It begins  with the story of Wylie Jones, a nice man who walks  out of a backyard barbecue and embarks on a  postmodern adventure of disturbing proportions. Stealing  his neighbor's Ford Galaxy 500, he traverses a  country filled with unexpected turmoil--where  crackheads lurk in the suburbs, a lesbian couple run a  Las Vegas wedding chapel, and a fabulous L.A. dinner  party is blown to bits. By turns scathing and  hilarious, outrageous and on-target Going  Native is the story of one man's odyssey  into the heart of darkness at the center of  contemporary American life.

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Review:

So many hyperbolic statements have been made about this novel--from Don DeLillo calling it a "slasher classic," to The Village Voice calling it a "mescaline Slurpee," to The New Yorker comparing it to Orson Welles's "deliciously sleazy" Touch of Evil--that it can be hard to sort out the truth from the hype. The bottom line is that this is a postmodern road novel about mass media, with multiple allusions to horror movies. As the rave review in the premiere horror critique rag, Necrofile, puts it, Going Native is about the "round-the-clock bombardment of inanity and violence that has so thoroughly invaded mundane existence as to render it cartoon-like." If you care about how horror imagery affects modern culture, and you want to have a great time thinking about it, then read this book.

From the Inside Flap:

Going Native is Stephen Wright's darkly comic take on the road novel, in which one man's headlong escape from the American Dream becomes everybody's worst nightmare. Wylie Jones is set: lovely wife, beautiful kids, barbecues in the backyard of his tastefully decorated suburban Chicago house with good friends. Set, but not satisfied. So one night he just walks out, gets behind the wheel of a neighbor's emerald-green Galaxy 500, and drives off into some other life, his name changed, his personality malleable. In Wright's inimitable narrative, we're taken on a joy ride to hell, a rollercoaster of sex and violence and the peculiar mix of the two that is our society today.

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Stephen Wright
Published by Delta (1995)
ISBN 10: 0385313861 ISBN 13: 9780385313865
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