Frank's Reviews > On The Road The Original Scroll

On The Road The Original Scroll by Jack Kerouac
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's review
Aug 24, 2010

it was ok
Read from March 15 to 24, 2010

Interesting story, terrible novel. I'd like to re-title it, "In the Closet." Because that's exactly what it is. The truth of the matter is that this book is about a man's struggle with being homosexual in a culture that was not open or accepting of such things. The way Kerouac would write in great detail about sexual encounters with women in such a way that felt passionless; as if he wrote it just in attempt to prove a point. Where as when he hinted at Neal's homosexuality and even his own, he did so with heart and desire. The last paragraph of the book really cements this concept and made me feel that what he really enjoyed about his travels was simply being with Neal, being close to Neal, holding hands with Neal and not seeming like a homosexual because after all, they were just on a road trip together, right?

On The Road wants you to believe that the importance of this book is that a man was brave and decided to seek life, to break out of the mold, kicked off a whole generation of life-seekers. When in truth it's about a grown man living with his mother, going on a trip(s) continually funded by his mother, stealing from whoever he pleases in some sort of selfish grasp at reality.

The writing itself is terrible at times. Many times I felt I should put it down and read something else, because I might have well read My Pet Goat. Many sentences make no sense at all. Many ideas are poorly conveyed and make you wonder if it was because he was drunk out of his mind while typing out his memories. Perhaps he just forgot.

If you're interested in the Beat generation, sure, you might find this worthy of your time. Otherwise it's a terrible book.

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