Paperback Ù Vineland Epub Ü

Paperback  Ù Vineland Epub Ü So when you think of Pynchon you think of serious work, right And trudgery and difficulty and obfuscation and pedanticism, and like this dizzying thing that just makes you feel unintellectual and slow for never being able to catch up, right Well if that is the case, you have never readVinelandBecause oh my god This book is so fucking good.I m not going to try to summarize or anything, because this book is too sprawling and reeling, and anyway that would be an afront to its amazingnes So when you think of Pynchon you think of serious work, right And trudgery and difficulty and obfuscation and pedanticism, and like this dizzying thing that just makes you feel unintellectual and slow for never being able to catch up, right Well if that is the case, you have never readVinelandBecause oh my god This book is so fucking good.I m not going to try to summarize or anything, because this book is too sprawling and reeling, and anyway that would be an afront to its amazingness But look, it s got all the same basic building blocks as any Pynchon book a million characters exhaustively historied, unfollowable plot twists, crazy ranting paranoia, incredibly phraseology, bizarre songs, sixties culture, sex and violence in fact, large swaths are oddly comparable to Kill Bill, if you ask me but it s done at a much easier level somehow It s muchaccessible, it s hilarious and warm, and you don t feel like you re in quicksand the whole time, just desperately trying to understand and keep breathing See, people never talk about the really unimaginable joy that soars through Pynchon s work And beauty I mean look, this book is tough, for sure, and I won t try to claim that I understood everything, but honestly it just doesn t matter It s just so much fun to read It s not work at all And the ending Once I had like thirty pages left I started getting that dark foreboding feeling, you know, like there s no way he can end this satisfactorily, there just isn t enough space I was so sure he was going to do something horrible, leaving everything messy and unfulfilling, end things like right in the middle of a sentence or something, but no The ending was beautiful, just like the rest of the book, totally satisfying and wonderful Jeez I loved this book Wow Pynchon s most underrated, I think a bighearted, funky read a worthy 3rd V book. This is without a doubt one of the most insane books ever written, even by Pynchon s standards this is something else, the characters are bonkers, the story if you could call it that is nuts , not a lot makes sense, the writing feels schizophrenic, there are moments that could have come from things such as, James Bond, Tarantino, Asian ninja flicks, cartoons, the hippie movement, 80 s action B movies, spirituality and a whole lotThe one thing that s in it s favour is the fact it was just This is without a doubt one of the most insane books ever written, even by Pynchon s standards this is something else, the characters are bonkers, the story if you could call it that is nuts , not a lot makes sense, the writing feels schizophrenic, there are moments that could have come from things such as, James Bond, Tarantino, Asian ninja flicks, cartoons, the hippie movement, 80 s action B movies, spirituality and a whole lotThe one thing that s in it s favour is the fact it was just so much fun to read , you are riding the crest of one crazy wave, best to just go with the flow and let Pynchon s unique vision take hold The novel transports him back to California, the country he has often visited, even lived in, but which still seems like a dream, everything too vivid, too distinct, too much to be real, the Pacific viewed from halfway up a mountain, separated into bands progressing from aquamarine to eggshell, sea transformed into sky in a series of gradations as precise as the steps in a theorem, the ever present background hum of violence occasionally coalescing into tangible form, raised voices from the lobb The novel transports him back to California, the country he has often visited, even lived in, but which still seems like a dream, everything too vivid, too distinct, too much to be real, the Pacific viewed from halfway up a mountain, separated into bands progressing from aquamarine to eggshell, sea transformed into sky in a series of gradations as precise as the steps in a theorem, the ever present background hum of violence occasionally coalescing into tangible form, raised voices from the lobby, a scream, coming downstairs to see a man slumped over the front desk, blood pouring from a hole in the occipital region of his head, a cramped office where nerds take a break from creating the future to sit on the floor and drink coffee from laboratory glassware and then return to symbolic manipulations that may turn into billions of dollars which will then be stolen by smart operatorsfamiliar with the legal aspects of stock options, mystical sex on waterbeds with girls who still call themselves hippie chicks when they are naked and speak indifferent Spanish and Japanese, Pynchon reconstructs it all in living technicolor, it is a kind of minor miracle Vineland, a zone of blessed anarchy in northern California, is the last refuge of hippiedom, a culture devastated by the sobriety epidemic, Reaganomics, and the Tube Here, in an Orwellian , Zoyd Wheeler and his daughter Prairie search for Prairie s long lost mother, a Sixties radical who ran off with a narc Vineland is vintage Pynchon, full of quasi allegorical characters, elaborate unresolved subplots, corny songs Floozy with an Uzi , movie spoofs Pee wee Herman in The Robert Musil Story , and illicit sex including a macho variation on the infamous sportscar scene in VFor than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English speaking world With than , titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up to date translations by award winning translators everybody s a hero at least once, maybe your chance hasn t come up yet Thomas Pynchon, Vineland I first read Vineland about 25 years It was my sopho year in college I was idealistic and I met this guy in the college bookstore named Thomas Pynchon Since it was my FIRST or was The Crying of Lot 49 my first Pynchon, I think I missed waythan I gained except for the desire for MORE Pynchon Looking back now, Pynchon for me starts to divide into his BIG GREAT novels and his f everybody s a hero at least once, maybe your chance hasn t come up yet Thomas Pynchon, Vineland I first read Vineland about 25 years It was my sopho year in college I was idealistic and I met this guy in the college bookstore named Thomas Pynchon Since it was my FIRST or was The Crying of Lot 49 my first Pynchon, I think I missed waythan I gained except for the desire for MORE Pynchon Looking back now, Pynchon for me starts to divide into his BIG GREAT novels and his funny, shorter novels.In my brain, Vineland fits with Inherent Vice, Bleeding Edge, V., and The Crying of Lot 49 On the otherside of my Pynchon index card sits Gravity s Rainbow, Mason Dixon, and Against the Day Obviously, there are no perfect systems here But that is how Vineland sits for me It was VERY good, just not GENIUS Pynchon The slimmer,linear, suffer pot noir stuff seemslikely to be finished and read But his bigger, Maximalist, juggernauts are waves that if you can catch and ride, will float you to Nirvana The bigger the Pynchon risk, the better your chance for seeing God or at least splitting a sub with her Vineland basically tells the story of how the hippies of the 60s sold out in various ways and moved from rejecting Nixon in the 60s to embracing Reagan in the 80s Like most of Pynchon s novels, this one is filled to overflow with Pynchon s humor, caricatured characters with absurd names, pop culture, paranoia, and weed I enjoyed it and if I was going to rank it against most writers it would rank high But it is on the lower end of the Pynchon heap Everybody always told me Vineland was Pynchon s worst effort what No way no how, brothers and sisters, this here is an endless DNA chain or like Russian doll of embedded story after story descending and re emerging through various strata of narratorial layers, pop culture send ups, genre parodies, all funny as hell and twisted and ridiculous while also extremely smart and painted with mind tweaking flights down and up imaginative spiral staircases And there s so much heart in this book this Everybody always told me Vineland was Pynchon s worst effort what No way no how, brothers and sisters, this here is an endless DNA chain or like Russian doll of embedded story after story descending and re emerging through various strata of narratorial layers, pop culture send ups, genre parodies, all funny as hell and twisted and ridiculous while also extremely smart and painted with mind tweaking flights down and up imaginative spiral staircases And there s so much heart in this book this old cold hombre almost teared up at certain moments Worst Pynchon C mon, this is his classic Saturday night drive in camp flick, for the mentally agitated among us, to be paired generously with Inherent Vice, and a downright lovely insane ode to mid 20th century American popular culture get on it If Three Should Be FiveI first readVinelandsome time in the 90 s Based on an imperfect recollection of it, I rated it three stars when I joined GoodReads I ve raised my rating to five stars, partly because of how much fun I had reading it a second time.I can t think of a better novel to read between now and when we emerge safely into the Post Trump era Reprise and ForeshadowVinelandreprises the longing and quest for an absent woman that was at the heart ofVin this case, the da If Three Should Be FiveI first readVinelandsome time in the 90 s Based on an imperfect recollection of it, I rated it three stars when I joined GoodReads I ve raised my rating to five stars, partly because of how much fun I had reading it a second time.I can t think of a better novel to read between now and when we emerge safely into the Post Trump era Reprise and ForeshadowVinelandreprises the longing and quest for an absent woman that was at the heart ofVin this case, the daughter of left wing activist parents, athird generation lefty , student radical, film maker and the novel s heroine, Frenesi Gates it features Kommandant Karl Bopp, former Nazi Luftwaffe officer and subsequently useful American citizen who could have emigrated fromGravity s Rainbowwhile it foreshadows the focus on the underground and anarchism that was so fundamental toAgainst the Day More realist than Pynchon s previous three novels, its description of the American landscape is as detailed and expressive, usually as humorous and sometimes as sentimental as it would later be inMason Dixon The shape of the brief but legendary Trasero County coast, where the waves were so high you could lie on the beach and watch the sun through them, repeated on its own scale the greater curve between San Diego and Terminal Island, including a military reservation which, like Camp Pendleton in the world at large, extended from the ocean up into a desert hinterland They were in a penthouse suite high over Amarillo, up in the eternal wind, with the sun just set into otherworld transparencies of yellow and ultraviolet, and other neon sign colours coming on across the boundless twilit high plain 381 A lightning storm had appeared far out at sea and now, behind them out the window, was advancing on the city, taking brightly crazed shots all along the horizon Somewhere in here a stereo began to play a stack of albums from the fifties, all in that sweet intense mainstream wherein the tenor drowns of love, or, as it is known elsewhere, male adolescence Zoyd, who was driving, came at last upon a long forest lined grade and cresting saw the trees fold away, as there below, swung dizzily into view, came Vineland, all the geometry of the bay neutrally filtered under pre storm clouds, the crystalline openwork arcs of pale bridges, a tall power plant stack whose plume blew straight north, meaning rain on the way, a jet in the sky ascending from Vineland International south of town, the Corps of Engineers marina, with salmon boats, power cruisers, and day sailers all docked together, and spilling uphill from the shoreline a couple of square miles crowded with wood Victorian houses, Quonset sheds, postwar prefab ranch and split level units, little trailer parks, lumber baron floridity, New Deal earnestness And the federal building, jaggedly faceted, obsidian black, standing apart, inside a vast parking lot whose fences were topped with concertina wire Don t know, it just landed one night, sitting there in the morning when everybody woke up, folks seem to be gettin used to it 317 This sounds like somewhere that is really there and that you re in the passenger s seat of the car that Zoyd is driving and you can see it, too Whilst laughing.Reaganomic Drug HysteriaPublished in 1990, the novel is set partly in 1969 in cinematic flashback , but primarily in 1984, the year in which Ronald Reagan won a second term as President It was also a time when Reagan s economic policies dubbedReaganomicsand hisWar on Drugswhich initiates what Pynchon callsnational drug hysteriawere in full flight Perhaps presciently for Trump, it s worth noting that the assassination attempt on Reagan was made just 69 days into his first term in 1981 People must have known what they were going to get.Ironically or maybe not , the ultimate source of the drugs was the CIAVerily I say that wheresoever the CIA putteth its meathooks upon the world, there also are to be found those substances which God may have created but the US Code hath decided to control Get me Notice how cheap coke has been since 81 Leaning Across the Counter cultureIt s well known that Pynchon has always had counter cultural sympathies Here, they re front and centre, as is the associated politics Frenesi conceives of her life working in the seventies underground documentary film industry this wayWhen the sixties were over, when the hemlines came down and the colours of the clothes went murky and everybody wore makeup that was supposed to look like you had no makeup on, when tatters and patches had had their day and the outlines of the Nixonian Repression were clear enough even for the most gaga of hippie optimists to see, it was then, facing into the deep autumnal wind of what was coming, that she thought, Here, finally here s my Woodstock, my golden age of rock and roll, my acid adventures, my Revolution Come into my own at lastHere was a world of simplicity and certainty no acidhead, no revolutionary anarchist would ever find, a world based on the one and zero of life and death Minimal, beautiful The patterns of lives and deaths Student Film CollectiveFrenesi belongs to a student film collective called 24fps, whose motto isA camera is a gun An image taken is a death performed Images put together are the substructure of an afterlife and a Judgment We will be architects of a just Hell for the fascist pig Death to everything that oinks I Love a Man in UniformParadoxically, Frenesi has inherited auniform fetishfrom her mother,as if some Cosmic Fascist had spliced in a DNA sequence requiring this form of seduction and initiation into the dark joys of social controlShe enjoys a privileged personal and financial position, because after the death of agent Weed Atman at the College of the Surf protest, she d been compromised by FBI agent, Brock Vonda rebel cop, with his own deeply personal agenda, only following the orders of a repressive regime based on deathinto supplying information and film footage about other activists for a fee in his eyes, she had goodsnitch potential He figures he won his war against the lefties, now he sees his future in the war against drugs Duly sworn officers of the law, wearing uniforms, packing guns, bound to uphold the Constitution, you think men like that would lie From New Deal to No DealHowever, come Reagan s autumnal wind, things started to changeShe understood that the Reaganomic axe blades were swinging everywhere, that she and Flash her husband were no longer exempt, might easily be abandoned already to the upper world and any unfinished business in it that might now resumeas if they d been kept safe in some time free zone all these years but now, at the unreadable whim of something in power, must reenter the clockwork of cause and effect Someplace there would be a real axe, or something just as painful, Jasonic, blade to meat final but at the distance she, Flash, and Justin their son had by now been brought to, it would all be done with keys on alphanumeric keyboards that stood for weightless, invisible chains of electronic presence or absenceWe are digits in God s computer They go fromonce carefree dopersto drug criminals sought out by paramilitary law enforcement agencies like the crop destroying Campaign Against Marijuana Production CAMP , Brock Vond s Political Re Education Program PREP and the Ultra High Speed Urban Reconnaissance Unit UHURU one of manyStar Trekreferences Pynchon paints a picture of the Reagan government as a brutal, conniving fascist regime that repealed the New Deal and replaced it with No DealIt s the whole Reagan program, isn t it dismantle the New Deal, reverse the effects of World War II, restore fascism at home and around the world, flee into the past, can t you feel it, all the dangerous childish stupidity I don t like the way it came out, I want it to be my way Reagan attacks the counter cultural underground as if it were a vicious alien virus intent on destroying the American mainstream The residents of Vineland become victims of Rex84 an armed exercise to test the US military s ability to detain large numbers of American citizens in case of civil unrest or national emergency Pynchon describes it asbig and invisiblesilent, undocumented, forever deniable The Nature of ResistanceReagan is resisted by a coalition of forces, including dopers, bikers, students, unionists,die hard industry leftiesin Hollywood, the Old Left, Wobblies, the New Left and Anarchists Guerillas turn skywriting and billboards that proclaimDrug Free AmericaintoDrugs Free America Only, within a few years, they re either dead or drinking Bud Light.While I suspect that Pynchon issympathetic to Anarchism than I am, Frenesi comes from a family tradition that islabour oriented than focussed on the Identity Politics of the New Left and the Anarchist movement Her parents have experienced HUAC inquiries, Hollywood black lists and strike breaking Their politics isconcerned with the plight of the working class under American capitalism than it is withsocial and cultural issues For the sake of convenience, I ll call the former Hard Left Politics and the latter Soft Left Politics.While the Soft Left continued its struggle into the 80 s, its effectiveness was undermined by Reagan s use of authoritarian force and the distribution of psychedelic drugs by the law enforcement agencies Worse still, the Soft Left was placated, sedated and negated by the new drug of complacency and conformity, Television the Tube Pynchon seems to lament that the Soft Left becameprominent than the Hard Left Despite his consistent identification with the counter culture, he seems to regard its social and cultural concerns as introspective, self obsessed and narcissistic.To the extent that the New Left focuses on the status of the individual, it s political program is individualistic in nature In contrast, the Old Left focuses on the role of workers under Capitalism, and its political program is collectivist Tubular BluesThe Broken CollectivityEither way, Reagan severely damaged the collective of resistance, so that Pynchon refers to it asthe broken collectivity.Blue eyed Frenesi s reaction was to turn blue She suffered postnatal depression after the birth of her daughter, Prairie, who joins the quest for her mother with her father, Zoyd Wheeler, and various federal agents not just Brock Vond who are obsessed with her In a way, the quest to find Frenesi after she disappears ends up being a quest for the restoration of family, and arguably family order This is Pynchon at his most sentimental or empathetic what he calls alittle wave of tenderness However, it also suggests an additional degree of scepticism about Anarchism This is what he has to say about Brock VondBrock Vond s genius was to have seen in the activities of the sixties left not threats to order but unacknowledged desires for it While the Tube was proclaiming youth revolution against parents of all kinds and most viewers were accepting this story, Brock saw the deep if he d allowed himself to feel it, the sometimes touching need only to stay children forever, safe inside some extended national Family They needed some reconditioning Perhaps, the State doesn t need to be abolished It too might just need some reconditioning Whether this reads too much into Pynchon s work, I still think it can be questioned whether he equates the counterculture with Anarchism It s arguable that an alternative culture of any significance requires a social democracy a democratic family within which to thrive An anarchist society would be too full of unregulated and counterproductive individualism and conflict.The Words of the Next GenerationRightly or wrongly, Prairie s boyfriend, Isaiah Two Four, blames the Tube for what went wrongWhole problem th you folks generation, nothin personal, is you believed in your Revolution, put your lives right out there for it but you didn t understand much about the Tube Minute the Tube got hold of you folks that was it, that whole alternative America, el deado meato, just like th Indians, sold it all to your real enemies, and even in 1970 dollars it was way too cheap February 26, 2017 I don t usually finish a book and start a review in the same breath But I also don t usually allow myself to readthan one of an author s works within a calendar year many books, little time, etc though of course Stephen King would be this year s other exception because the Tower, all things yield to it T Ruggs, you magnificant bastard, I hope you know how many personal rules I m violating because you re the first time since auspiciously picking up my first collection of Bukowski p I don t usually finish a book and start a review in the same breath But I also don t usually allow myself to readthan one of an author s works within a calendar year many books, little time, etc though of course Stephen King would be this year s other exception because the Tower, all things yield to it T Ruggs, you magnificant bastard, I hope you know how many personal rules I m violating because you re the first time since auspiciously picking up my first collection of Bukowski poems that I ve been able to add a This Writer Changed My Life For Always notch to my literary bedpost Reading Vineland confirmed what Gravity s Rainbow left me suspecting I bloody love Thomas Pynchon Rilly.Finishing Gravity s Rainbow left me with an almost obscene urge to help myself to another serving of Pynchon, which is an urge I ve been fighting for months now I finally caved, intending to take on V but settling for Vineland because part of the joy of Pynchon is the inherent madness, and I just can t handle another meaty tome yet the latter weighs in at a few pages shy of 400 the former uh, does most assuredly not And because I haven t talked about GR enough, I am still a little battered from that experience my opinion on bananas might be forever changed, too I needed something a little less daunting first Enter Vineland This book was so good Now being able to pinpoint a Pynchonian pattern a few musical outbursts, sleuthing plots, oddball character names, stunning tangents that really aren t that tangential after all, a natural vocabulary only found in the most ruthless of Scrabble opponents helped me identify what I adore most about Pynchon s prose It s his ability to concoct some of the most overtly zany scenes in literature, to confront the reader with these in your face storms of hilarity for the sake of maximizing the subtle tragedies he gently lets the story consider, leaving the reader to marinate in sadness It s an effect that would be any mixture of sloppy, condescending, formulaic or tedious if attempted by anyone else but Pynchon makes it work The real success is that his characters who need be sympathetic are so when someone realizes that her best days are behind her or comes to the dawning realization that he s being used by an entire government or has an ugly epiphany about the mother she never knew, it is the most heartbreaking scene in the world As for the effort involved in decoding the obscure references that are sprinkled throughout Pynchon s books as liberally as the Bacon Bits on any salad worth eating, I was deeply grateful that T Ruggs s novel begins the same year as I did, which meant I caught waywayWAAAAYcultural allusions this time The narrative flows better when I m not running to a secondary source every three lines and I appreciated the opportunity to enjoy this book less haltingly, which isn t to say that I didn t need to have a few reference materials handy There were enough hazy hippie memories to keep me on my toes, though I caught a number of those as often as I had a flutter of joyful recognition every time The Doors or Zeppelin or Pink Floyd or some other People s Republic of Rock and Roll favorite got a shout out.I feel a reread of The Crying of Lot 49 and maybe Inherent Vice in my future Color me fucking amped Pynchonian zaniness fibrous nutrition at the sentence level fun to read hermeneutical political leaving plenty of lacunae in immediate comprehension to commit intellectual effervescence, not to mention I m of an age to not to have to look up most of the cultural references.

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