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Jack Kerouac's On the Road rocked the establishment with its seminal, stream-of-consciousness portrayal of 1950s underground America. Amidst a whirlwind of sex, drugs and jazz, writer Sal Paradise and his hero 'the holy con-man with the shining mind', Dean Moriarty traverse the country in search of life and experience. Wild and exuberant, this life-changing novel defined the Beat generation and inspired countless others.

• On The Road
• Format: Paperback
• Author: Jack Kerouac
• Size: 18cm x 11cm, 291 pages
• Published 2008
• BRAND NEW
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On the Road is based on the travels of Kerouac and his friends across America. It is considered a defining work of the postwar Beat and Counterculture generations, with its protagonists living life against a backdrop of jazz, poetry, and drug use. The novel features many key figures in the Beat movement, such as William S. Burroughs (Old Bull Lee), Allen Ginsberg (Carlo Marx) and Neal Cassady (Dean Moriarty) represented by characters in the book, including Kerouac himself as the narrator Sal Paradise.

The idea for On the Road, Kerouac's second novel, was formed during the late 1940s in a series of notebooks, and then typed out on a continuous reel of paper during three weeks in April 1951. It was first published by Viking Press in 1957.

When the book was originally released, The New York Times hailed it as "the most beautifully executed, the clearest and the most important utterance yet made by the generation Kerouac himself named years ago as 'beat,' and whose principal avatar he is." In 1998, the Modern Library ranked On the Road 55th on its list of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. The novel was chosen by Time magazine as one of the 100 best English-language novels from 1923 to 2005.

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  • Seller location: Wellsford, Auckland, NZ

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