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Tiger in a Trance

Ludington, Max

129 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0385507046 / ISBN 13: 9780385507042
Published by Doubleday, New York, 2003
Condition: Near Fine Hardcover
From Black Falcon Books (Wellesley, MA, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

First edition, September 2003, stated; first printing, full number line. Inscribed and signed by the author on the title page: "To Art / Hope you enjoy! / Max Ludington." The author's debut novel. Quarter-bound in blue paper-covered boards with a gilt-lettered, gray-cloth spine. Book is tight, square, and unmarked; bottom corners, tail of spine lightly bumped. The dust jacket is not price-clipped (original price $21.95); Brodart protected. Size: 8vo - over 7" - 9" tall. Bookseller Inventory # 002463

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Tiger in a Trance

Publisher: Doubleday, New York

Publication Date: 2003

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition:Near Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Near Fine

Signed: Signed by Author

Edition: First Edition.

About this title


In the tradition of Robert Stone and Denis Johnson, a darkly authentic road novel set in the nomadic world of the Deadheads.

It is 1985, and eighteen-year-old Jason Burke is a full-time Deadhead, following the Grateful Dead around the country and surviving by selling T-shirts. But Jason is about to discover the lucrative ease of selling drugs. He’ll also meet the women who will play key romantic roles in his life: Jane, the tall, green-eyed girlfriend of a drug dealer; and Melanie, a rebellious high school girl, one-armed as the result of a car accident. Jason’s one-night tryst with Melanie sets the stage for their future before Jason takes off for California with the tour.
Jason has a past of his own. He grew up overseas, the son of a journalist, and when he was eleven his father was killed in a Syrian prison, accused of spying. Jason has never dealt directly with his father’s death, and his detachment has estranged him from his mother and his older brother.
In Carmel, Jason stops for the night to see Harry, an old friend of his father. He learns that Harry, a rock-and-roll-loving alcoholic, is dying of emphysema. Eventually, Jason falls into drug dealing in earnest; hits the road with Melanie; is pursued by private detectives; and returns to nurse Harry through his final illness, all the while battling his own increasingly serious heroin addiction. The end of the road is near.
Combining the high spirits of youth with the sometimes jaded wisdom of the counterculture, Tiger in a Trance is a startlingly sure-handed and accomplished debut novel that recalls such generational classics as Less Than Zero and The Beach. It shows how music, drugs, and especially love can be enchanting, and how the most bewitching things can also be the most bedeviling.

From the Back Cover:

“A gripping and astonishing On-the-Road first novel that in both subject and execution can be compared to the best of both Kerouac and Kesey.”
— George Plimpton

“The Grateful Dead's unique partnership with Dead Heads generated not only devotion but artistic inspiration — and Tiger In A Trance is the finest literary sample of that creativity to date. It is a brilliant novel of life in the world of one subgroup of Dead Heads, documenting the full package that results when the young pursue freedom and are forced to pay the maximum price.”
— Dennis McNally, author of A Long Strange Trip: The Inside History of the Grateful Dead
“The Grateful Dead have been the backdrop of many novels, but Tiger in a Trance is the first one to portray the lives of the Deadheads themselves. The dialogue is fantastic — sharp, economical and authentic. This excellent first novel will certainly last as long as the Dead’s music will.”
— Jim Carroll, author of The Basketball Diaries

"Max Ludington is an obviously accomplished and promising writer. His style is graceful, his characters alive, and he can tell a story. As a generational novel, Tiger in a Trance reminded me of The Sun Also Rises."
— Philip Caputo, author of The Horn of Africa and A Rumor of War

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