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Willkommen in Wellville

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3.66  ·  Rating Details ·  5,150 Ratings  ·  350 Reviews
Dr. John Harvey Kellogg, Erfinder von Cornflakes, Erdnußbutter und 75 weiteren gastrisch einwandfreien Lebensmitteln, ist angetreten, den uralten Traum der Menschheit vom ewigen Leben zu erfüllen. Zu seinem Tempel der Gesundheit wallfahrtet die gesundheitsbewußte Oberschicht Amerikas.

Während eine kuriose Gruppe von Gesundheitsaposteln, Körnchenfressern und Sonnenanbetern s
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Paperback, 625 pages
Published December 1st 1994 by Dtv (first published 1993)
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Donna  Napier
Jul 18, 2009 Donna Napier rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
TC Boyle is one of my favorite authors because I simply fall in love with his sentences. The man writes such incredible sentences! The Road to Wellville is a captivating story, too, so between the brilliant sentence structure and the fascinating story line, I was spellbound until the ending. Unfortunately, like other TC Boyle novels I've read, the ending missed the mark for me. It seems that Boyle paints himself into a corner and then just decides that the only way out is to walk back across the ...more
Rob
Sep 24, 2013 Rob rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm pretty sure I've mentioned this before, but I'd be hard-pressed to name another author who so effectively combines humor with dread. In every book by T.C. Boyle – this one included – I cringe as I read because I know some horrible reckoning will befall most of the main characters, but the journey to that reckoning is so frequently punctuated with humor and absurdity that I feel terrible enjoying these characters' downfalls so damn much.

Like so many of Boyle's other books, The Road to Wellvil
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Joseph D'Lacey
May 26, 2017 Joseph D'Lacey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My judgement is utterly coloured by that fact that I saw the film adaptation first and adored it.

There was never any chance that the novel could live up to the memories I already had in my mind's eye when reading it. So, for me at least, this is one of those very rare occasions upon which the film gets five stars, the book only four.

T. C. Boyle is an accomplished and skilful novelist, whose ability to make the past seem real and immediate is extraordinary. However, in terms of pace, Alan Parker
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JTT
Aug 07, 2008 JTT rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Done to a turn, like a Porterhouse steak, grilled to a perfect medium rare. Or should I say: "like a Protose Pattie perfectly congealed." This is an excellent, well-written, funny novel about Kellogg and Battle Creek in its heyday. An incredible amount of research must have been undertaken in order to craft such a classic piece of American fiction. I don't know how TC Boyle does it. Like his book on the Kinseys, he writes with so much confidence and factual detail you'd think he'd lived in these ...more
Aurora
Sep 21, 2009 Aurora rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of those hard to rate books. It's funny and the subject and time period are surprising and compelling to me. But after a certain point, the story just stops moving forward. To stereotype wildly, this seems to happen to me often with modern fiction- I like the characters and the story, but somewhere in the middle things just start to amble, and the thing ends up being 400 pages for no good reason.

Historical fiction is so weird, anyway. Somewhere in the middle of this, I thought "why
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Johnny
May 29, 2017 Johnny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Remembering the failed movie based on The Road to Wellville (that I didn’t see until it was on television and, even then, it was sliced up for broadcast television (Remember? Before streaming and broadband capabilities? You had to wait until someone put the film on the air.)), I don’t know quite how it failed with the fabulous casting. Bridgett Fonda was the perfect image of the beautiful, wealthy, self-indulgent, and slightly frigid spouse of Matthew Broderick as the frustrated husband trying t ...more
Chance Lee
Aug 01, 2013 Chance Lee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Road to Wellville is an at-times fascinating, at-times dull historical fiction about John Harvey Kellogg and his cult-like following of health nuts at the turn of the century. The fascinating parts are really fascinating and the dull parts are, thankfully, not that dull, thanks to T.C. Boyle's expertise with the English language. If thinks had moved along at a brisker pace, it would have held my attention better.

This is billed as a comic novel, but maybe the long passages made me too drowsy
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Pete
Feb 12, 2015 Pete rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars, really, but goodreads' war on subtlety continues. as a stylistic exercise this is a triumph. as an actual novel, something south of there, although not like antarctica south. very much in the vein of new yorker humor articles -- where my response is "ah, i see this person is making a joke" as opposed to actually laughing or feeling amused. there were a few exceptions: the repetition of "womb manipulation" toward the end gets pretty funny. but a lot of the other stuff really felt formu ...more
David DeValera
Feb 24, 2010 David DeValera rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Road to Wellville is a story of people in search of Organic Grace. Dr. Kellogg's followers believe they suffer from the visceral accumulation of toxic sludge brought on by years of improper diet. Since the rigors of eating were never mastered better than by the great Cleansed Colon himself, Dr. Kellogg, they follow his every command. They scour their colons, blast out their bowels, purge their way to purity--yet, despite the daily intrusions to their lower orifices', they still end up diggin ...more
Kirby
Oct 12, 2015 Kirby rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned
Yuck. It is rare that I abandon a book, but 100 pages into this, I couldn't force myself to read 400 more. I love T.C. Boyle but this sort of repulsed me and I hated it. Too much on bowels/colon activity, and everyone in the book seems a little gross for some reason. Just not enjoying it in general. I'm out.
Rauf
Jan 08, 2010 Rauf rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who think organic foods are so edgy
Shelves: fiction, 2010-list, 3-5
1907.
Battle Creek, Michigan.

The American bourgeois were lining up to get top treatments for their sick, frail bodies at the Sanatorium. Most of them suffered the same ailment: their colons were shot to hell. The man in charge (and who could save them) was Dr. John Harvey Kellogg. Surgeon, inventor, author, cap'n of industry. His methods were simple but very challenging.
Stop eating meat, stop drinking, stop smoking. Don't worry. The menu in the San living room would make you want to forget those
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Ian Mapp
Oct 15, 2008 Ian Mapp rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You have to admire TC Boyle, this is the forth book (after Drop City, Tortilla Curtain and Inner Circle) of his that i have read and they are all different, with different themes and time frames.

This is comedy gold and tells the story of the Kellog family, superbly played by Anthony Hopkins in the film adaptaion.

He runs a sanitarioum in 19th Century smallsville america with some bizarre treatments - mostly based around the bowell and the avoidance of meat, coffee and drink.

Three seperate strorie
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Lynn G.
This book is probably a 3.5* rather than a three. An interesting, fictional look at the empire that J.H. Kellogg built around "physiologic" living and an amazing number of enemas; yes, enemas. His highly regarded Sanitarium in Battle Creek, Michigan, or "San" as it was popularly called, hosted thousands of "patients" over the years. All of them wealthy, many famous, and all apparently suffering from such complaints as autointoxication, neurasthenia, and, worst of all, the eating of meat. Kellogg ...more
Liz
Jan 22, 2009 Liz rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
You expect a certain amount of snarkiness from Boyle, and Wellville doesn't dissapoint, but I found no glee in it, as I did in Drop City, or Budding Prospects, or even Water Music. I kept thinking what a marvelous writer he is, yet how unfortunate his choice of stories and characters are. I get it that Kellog's sanitarium and its regimens were for the turn of the century's health nuts, and that many of its practices were misguided and downright dangerous in some cases. I get that there were huck ...more
Marie Kelleher
Dec 30, 2012 Marie Kelleher rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
You know, I've given T.C. Boyle a couple of tries now. In both cases (the other was Drop City, which I liked slightly better), I found myself vaguely interested and vaguely irritated, in equal measure. In both cases, he gives us a utopian experiment pulled down by the most banal of human flaws (which, I suppose, is the real tragedy: at our worst, we're not so much "evil" or even "bad" as we are distressingly petty and self-involved). In each, he draws his characters with some depth, but you can' ...more
Daniel Taylor
May 11, 2012 Daniel Taylor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
TC Boyle has taken the historical figure John Harvey Kellogg who founded a bizarre health spa and invented cornflakes and has created an intelligent novel set at the spa.

Eleanor Lightbody has been to the spa twice before and, like all well-meaning wives, has decided her husband, Will, will benefit from Kellogg's health miracles. Kellogg is written as authoritarian monomaniac with grandiose delusions about his power over his patients' lives.

The satirical read is entertaining, intelligent and fun
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David
Feb 14, 2015 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like Boyle's writing, perhaps even more in this one than others, but like some of his other historical based works, it seemed like most of the action was a foregone conclusion from the beginning. It was interesting and rich in detail, but it could have been a fourth the length and only missed out on the amount of detail the reader got to see. The same things would have happened to the characters, the same things that were expected from the beginning. I suppose it was more to sketch out Kellogg ...more
Tania
Jun 11, 2008 Tania rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It started great, wonderful premise and colourful writing. But then it just went on and on without actually going anywhere. (Needed a bit of roughage to move things through. Or at least a good edit to cut to the chase.) I persevered but by midway it set me on the road to Snoozeville. Finally gave up and didn't finish. I'd recommend Boyle's terrific Talk Talk instead, or the Inner Circle.

I haven't seen the movie, would be interested to see how/if the film snapped it into shape.
Lizzy
Jul 18, 2014 Lizzy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
TC Boyle is Brilliant as always. What I found most fascinating about this novel is it examined the beginnings of the health food movement... a crazy doctor semonizing on a specific diet and way of life and the people who follow him like sheep. It made me think about today's health craze...the things that I believe to be very healthy but in 100 years may be considered misinformed. What also interested me were the things Dr. Kellogg said were healthy, and thinking to today, what aspects of a healt ...more
rachel
May 07, 2007 rachel rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned
Truly, I didn't think it was possible that a book would ever have too much scatological humor for me to enjoy. But I just couldn't get into my first TC Boyle read. Maybe if I'd been emotionally engaged in either loving or hating the characters getting enemas? But nothing compelled me to read past page 100. And my friends, there are too many books and too little time to spend reading something that doesn't move you in one way or another.
Jen
Sep 14, 2007 Jen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The librarian recommended this book, as he likes the author. I did enjoy the book. A lot of the story was based on loose facts. It is fun to see how people would go to extremes to be healthy back in the days before liposuction, botox and plastic surgery. It was an interesting read and I hear there is a movie based off of this book, which I am looking forward to seeing.
Barbara
Jul 15, 2015 Barbara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a 4.5 book for sure. T.C. Boyle can write exceptionally well and his characters are incredible. I am fascinated with the Kellogg sanitarium and wonder just how much of this is based on truths. Time to research.
Johanna Moran
Jul 12, 2010 Johanna Moran rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this years ago and loved it. But then I love Boyle's dark sardonic style. I'll have to read it again and give it a proper review.
Stephan
One of the best comic novels of the late 20th century. The language is beautiful and precise, the characterizations rich and varied, the story a wild ride into the American stomach.
Jess Faraday
Jul 18, 2015 Jess Faraday rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As always--unforgettable characters, whizz-bang storytelling, and gorgeous, lush prose. Also? Makes today's dietary faddists look downright sane by comparison =)
Krenner1
Entertaining historical fiction about a vegetarian spa for the wealthy in Battle Creek, Michigan circa 1850. Was the doctor killing patients in the name of science? A subplot portrays flim-flam men who followed paths of Kellogg and Post, trying to cash in on the dried cereal invention and phenom. Four-star writing, reduced to three-star for me because the story dawdled and became too long.
Falene
May 09, 2017 Falene rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
very long read
Mientras Leo
Divertido, sin muchas pretensiones, la opinión mejora por el buen hacer de Boyle
Randy Elrod
Clever writing. I didn't realize cereal magnate Kellogg was such a controversial person. Disgusting actually.
Julie
Sep 29, 2016 Julie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
A bit repetitive and perhaps longer than I wanted it to be, and replete with characters I found it hard to like, this book was redeemed for me by the interesting situations in which the characters find themselves and the believable choices they make.
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History, Medicine...: turn of the century sanatoriums 2 32 Oct 20, 2011 02:39PM  
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T. Coraghessan Boyle (also known as T.C. Boyle, born Thomas John Boyle on December 2, 1948) is a U.S. novelist and short story writer. Since the late 1970s, he has published eleven novels and more than 60 short stories. He won the PEN/Faulkner award in 1988 for his third novel, World's End, which recounts 300 years in upstate New York. He is married with three children. Boyle has been a Distinguis ...more
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