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Stone Junction

4.13 of 5 stars 4.13  ·  rating details  ·  1,454 ratings  ·  145 reviews
Charging like a runaway semitrailer on a downhill grade and spanning the era from Haight-Ashbury's Summer of Love into the darkness of 1980s Manhattan, Stone Junction is a wise and wildly imaginative novel about Daniel Pearse, an orphaned child who is taken under the wings of the AMO -- the Alliance of Magicians and Outlaws. An assortment of sages sharpen Daniel's wide-eye ...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published September 11th 1998 by Grove Press (first published 1990)
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Magic America by C.E. MedfordStone Junction by Jim DodgeThe Book With No Name by AnonymousHell's Horizon by Darren ShanCity of the Snakes by D.B. Shan
My Cult Fiction
2nd out of 31 books — 17 voters
The Dark Side of the Felt by Tyler NalsDeath Raise by Christopher  ParksThe Mu Rhythm Bluff by Jonathan   MitchellThe Prodigal by Alexander J. AllisonBank Shot by Donald E. Westlake
Novels Featuring Poker
22nd out of 28 books — 14 voters

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Community Reviews

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I'm too tired to organize my thoughts into coherent paragraphs, so instead here's a numbered list thingy, sorry if it's lacking in artistry.

1. I'm about 99 percent sure I've read this before, but I can't remember much of anything about it. When I went to my library to find something else today, this just leapt off the shelf at me, so.

2. Not many books seriously grab you with the first five or ten pages; this one had me riveted by the end of the first paragraph.

3. Jim Dodge –- like Pynchon, thou
Feb 05, 2012 Drew rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Drew by: thomas pynchon
I think the last time I was this gripped right from the beginning of a book was when I read House of Leaves, and the time before that was probably Infinite Jest. Stone Junction isn't really much like either of those, though, so don't get the wrong idea. House of Leaves is gimmicky and academic, and Infinite Jest is long and fairly difficult. Stone Junction is significantly shorter* and definitely way more accessible. On the title page it calls itself an "alchemical potboiler." Using the word pot ...more
Max Nemtsov
You don’t have to be illegal to be an outlaw.

Это супер-роман о супраментальном. Это идеальный роман идей. Пинчон назвал его «изгойским эпосом», и это недомолвка столетия — по крайней мере, второй половины прошлого века. Потому что это намного больше и алхимического триллера, и квеста поперек Америки, из которого о жизни вообще — не только в Америке — можно узнать намного больше, чем из многих томов. В нем есть все, что нужно для умеющего читать.

Если «Трилогия общественных работ» Мэтта Раффа — «
Sep 19, 2007 tim rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: magicians, outlaws, diamond lovers
If you have not yet read Jim Dodge, start with Fup, the "fable that became a fable." Fup sets the perfect tone for Stone Junction and introduces a recurring, if minor character in the later. Both stories are deeply moving, full of insight, and written with incredible heart and humor. I also recommend saving the great introduction by Thomas Pynchon until the end, as he gives away plot points that are better left as undiscovered surprises.
This is one of those books where the plot is original and the pace is upbeat, the characters are well-desribed and the twists are in abundance, but overall the work falls well short of the sum of its parts. I really wanted to like Stone Junction. I enjoyed its Pynchon-Tom Robbins kind of Americana raw boned wide-eyed American late 20th century style, with occasional touches of Richard Ford-like blatantly non pretentious poetic observations-- but only up to a certain point. Then it kept going, an ...more
This book sets its own terms, existing somewhere in the lands of political fantasy--if such a geography exists. Here lives an underground and ancient, loosly-organized collaboration among those who have always lived outside the law. This loose confederation of anarchists, magicians, gamblers, alchemists--and others who live in a counter-economy//counter culture--has its own codes of honor which easily substitutes for rules.

This organization and the characters that interact with it are the protag
Dec 02, 2007 Grin rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Abby Howell
This book is a mix between Lord of The Rings, Huckleberry Finn, On the Road and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. I loved it! I recommend this book to anyone who liked the above books, and also people who need books to move fast or end up reading books in short spurts (on the bus) or work a job where they need to leave the world for a while and get totally absorbed. I couldn't put it down and the writing is smart, the characters are just as memorable as anything that Krauss could write- minus any ...more
I think I first became aware of this book when searching Amazon for "Haight-Ashbury." I finished it a few weeks ago, and I MISS IT! To have that life, to have people approach the world that way -- man, to have someone take me to a remote ranch with the directives to contemplate, to notice, to think...well, that would outshine a lotto win. I'd explode with happiness! And you get to DO that while you read this mangificent measure of a book. It's pretty obvious I can't contain my zeal. I want to co ...more
Sep 01, 2009 Ollie rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Americana aficionados and Magic Realists
Recommended to Ollie by: my boyfriend
Thomas Pynchon, in his introduction to this novel, talks of a story grounded on Magic (with a capital M) from a time before the internet appeared in our lives. In my view, it's the kind of mysticism which was sought by the Beats (one of them, Gary Snyder, is even thanked in the novel); a form of American Magic Realism as seen through a hashish haze, to the sound of rock & roll.

Like Gabriel García Márquez's "One Hundred Years of Solitude" (the epitome of Magic Realism), giant characters come
No puedo dar una opinión, pero me dejó sabor La subasta del Lote 49, 1Q84, Hijos de la media noche...
Theo Logos
Stone Junction reads like a literary Frankenstein construct - equal parts Tom Robbins' whimsy, Umberto Eco's esotericism, and Ken Kesey's individualism/anarchism, yet it is all Jim Dodge's brilliance. If this witches brew makes you blanche in horror then avoid this book. If, however, like me, it whets your imagination and sets your mind to salivating, then by all means crack the covers and come dance at the monster's ball!
Stone Junction will introduce you to the AMO - The Alliance of Magicians a
Marcus Miller
This is a great, different and interesting book. It starts off really well, has some truly colourful characters and the story winds and weaves towards who knows where but... then it falls of the rails a little towards the end.

I am not 100% sure if my review is too low, as it really is a great book, but it's quite long, takes it's time building you up and the payoff is a little - weird and ultimately not very satisfying.

It's such a strange book that I am not really confident in my review, it is
Shucks. The first quarter of the book (not to mention rave reviews and an introduction by Thomas Pynchon) had me thinking I was in for something special. I also enjoyed Dodge's well-written characters in Fup. However, the middle third of the book drags something awful; most all of it could be excised without dramatically affecting the plot. I had the sensation that Dodge- whose only previous work was a novella- was trying to write a full length novel but could only do so by stringing together a ...more
I can see what seems to appeal to so many in this book but it left me cold. A woman and her son are taken under the wing of a collective of anarchists and magicans and end up joining the fight against "the man". Gradually the story gets ever more fantastic as the man daniel grows and gets taught various skills culminating in the heist of the worlds biggest diamond. I just could not relate to any of the characters except they reminded me of some very overwrought addled monologues I had to listen ...more
Rereading it was a wonderful experience, and it very clearly reminded me why Jim Doge is one of my favourite authors, even though Much Stone, Such Junction is not my favourite book written by him.

It just grabs you and drags you (with your permission, or possibly without) through itself, constantly surprising you, raining on you colourful people for whom you immediately open all the doors into your heart, a spirit of America so quirky and beautiful you can't help but fall in love with it, and th
After finishing the book last night, I needed to find out more about Jim Dodge. He grew up on a commune, and there are definite influences on his writing. Also, he may have written half of Stone Junction and then put it away for awhile, coming back later to write the second half. There's an obvious shift in feeling just over halfway through, so this is believable as well.

The story is about Daniel and his mother. She met with tragedy early in his life and he was taken in by AMO: Alchemists, Magi
Rudy Waltz
This is one of my favorite books of all time. I got it in San Francisco for a dollar or two, from a drifter peddling books placed upon the sidewalk. A little known gem about a wayward orphaned youth who avenges his mothers death with the help of alchemists, outlaws, magicians, gamblers, and all kinds of hustlers. Here's a summation from a fellow fan on Goodreads:
"This book is a mix between Lord of The Rings, Huckleberry Finn, On the Road and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas."

If Hunter Thompson sat down to write an all-American Harry Potter--this would be it.
Richard Braughtigan with plot and no suicide.Tim Robbins with less whimsey. This book
is unfairly obscure because it is awesomely entertaining and wonderful.

a sixties fueled, magic addled mythic race across America by young Daniel Pearce
as he tries to become a man and solve the mystery of the death of his mother, the greatest,
sexiest, straight shootin proto-hippie there ever was.
Young boy is being trained by some sort of ancient secret society. Boy meets several weird characters, all social misfits, all with some special knowledge/ability. Of course the system is out to get them and several times they escape their enemies by a hair's breadth. Too many clichés. Halfway through the book I dropped out. I'm sure the boy will come of age, become a worthy member of the secret society and revenge his mother in due time. But I won't be around to read it.
There's something very charming about Dodge's Stone Junction. It kind of reminded me a bit of an edgier Harry Potter novel mixed with a PG13 version of Natural Born Killers.

The characters are interesting, droll, absorbing. The story is engaging. Okay, the stuff about the flame spiral in the diamond was a bit too much for me, but all around, it was a highly entertaining read.
Tiña moitas ganas de que me gustara, pero na segunda metade foime perdendo, a medida que a palabrería máxica-new-age ía gañando peso. O punto forte da novela son os secundarios memorables que van aparecendo (e desaparecendo) un tras doutro. Por momentos parece todo unha excusa para o desfile de mestres do disfraz, o latrocinio, o poker e o drogarse; eses son os mellores momentos. Logo xa nada.
Rasmus Skovdal
I really wanted to like this book – it starts off with a young woman punching a nun (swoon!) - but the further along I got, the less interested I became.

It's not a bad story. Orphaned boy, society of outlaws and sorta-kinda magicians, esoteric training, a peculiar heist, a decent MacGuffin and a host of weird characters.

Let's just cut to the inevitable but (I feel like that has potential as a dumb band name – The Inevitable But), though: for a whole bunch of reasons, the ideas are better than th
Axel Marazzi
Terminé el libro Stone Junction, de Jim Dodge.

No conocía al autor hasta que me lo recomendó @pablorama, pero leí alguna reseña y me pareció interesante.

No pude dejar de leerlo. Como solo te pasa con los libros de los que te enamoras.

Una novela anárquica, alquímica, que trata sobre la vida, desde el nacimiento, de Daniel Pearse.

La relación con su madre, su vida alternativa, sus maestros y todo en relación a su educación y crecimiento como ser humano responsable.

Su ingreso a una sociedad secreta d
A brilliant, rollicking story. Funny and poignant, I need to read more from Mr. Dodge.
truly inspiring.
Pues la verdad es que bien, pero por las críticas que había leído pensé que iba a ser la panacea y no lo ha sido. En un estilo algo surrealista que me recuerda a ratos a También las vaqueras sienten melancolía o Un general confederado de Big Sur, nos encontramos con la enésima historia sobre el paso de la niñez a la adolescencia y a la edad adulta a través de un viaje por los Estados Unidos. Esta trama es tan recurrente como las películas sobre la Guerra Civil en España, pero por suerte está ade ...more
Ian Mapp
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
1st from dodge for version...subtitled: an alchemical pot-boiler. copyright 1990

w/an introduction from pynchon...copyright 1997

dedication: to my brother bob, whose courage and humor are a constant inspiration even if he catches fish like he catches cards.

followed by some gratitude...looks like a pile of folk

and heh! i love this 1st line of the intro from pynchon, having just now completed a reading of Love and War in California: A Novel, a story that has this same notion, almost verb
Nic Margett
Apr 15, 2013 Nic Margett rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Neil Gaiman
I thought this was a fantastic book. A great storyline with some imaginative characters. I, like quite a few other reviewers, felt it did slow down a little in the third chapter (there are only four) but i was so addicted that i literally read the final two thirds of the book in what should have been a more productive day off (depending on your point of view of what constitutes productive!)

With it's use of magic in an everyday world, this book definitely reminded me of Neil Gaiman. It's really e
I had this book recommended by a friend who's usually right about movies and old school death metal. He said I would probably like this book, and somehow he was correct. This book manages to spin a magical tale of metaphysical self development out of what should be a landscape of downtrodden Americana. Meditation in the mountains, high rolling poker games, messing around with the CIA and other agencies of law and order. Throughout it displayed a sense of justice / balance, showed characters in b ...more
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Jim Dodge is an American novelist and poet whose works combine themes of folklore and fantasy, set in a timeless present. He has published three novels, Fup, Not Fade Away and Stone Junction and a collection of poetry and prose, Rain on the River. Dodge was born in 1945 and grew up as an Air Force brat. As an adult he spent many years living on an almost self-sufficient commune in West Sonoma Coun ...more
More about Jim Dodge...
Fup Not Fade Away Rain on the River: Selected Poems and Short Prose Baking with Jim Dodge Scattered, Smothered & Chopped

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“Let's get really fucked up and full of sentimental despair and then finally decide life, despite very heartbreak and anguished cry, is worth each pulse and breath” 7 likes
“Why are the ones who are too good to be true always being true to someone else?” 3 likes
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