Vince's Reviews > The Subterraneans

The Subterraneans by Jack Kerouac
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M 50x66
's review
Jan 23, 2008

liked it
Read in July, 1995

The Subterraneans is not prose. It is not a story told to the reader. It is frantic bebop hopped up on Benzedrine played in words not notes. Sounds strung together for spoken syncopation not sentences, improvisation stopping only to let the author catch his breath.

Mad and beautiful. Dark and chaotic. Finally becoming too much for itself and unraveling as you read. Maybe it was too much for me. Maybe I just could not keep up with the frenetic pace of the prose. By the end I was too tied up in knotted strings of text to discern subtext. Words trip on themselves. Harmony slides to dissonance. The Subterraneans loses its way.

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