Next Up: Dog Soldiers
Mix a journalist, his wife, the Vietnam War, and a sailor and what do you get? A heroin deal gone bad. Huh?
Sounds interesting enough. And that’s the premise for Dog Soldiers, what appears to be another dark, bleak, depressing novel. When I’m done with 101 Books, I might read 100 happy Disney novels to counteract all of these depressing books. Who’s with me?
Anyway, here are a few quick facts about Dog Soldiers, written by Robert Stone:
- Published in 1974, Dog Soldiers won the 1975 National Book Award for Fiction in the U.S.
- Stone drew heavily from his experiences in the “Merry Prankster” crew, which was led by Ken Kesey–he of One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest fame.
- The character Ray Hicks is model after Beat Generation icon Neal Cassady–Jack Kerouac’s buddy in On The Road–one of the novels on the Time list.
- The novel was turned into a feature film–Who’ll Stop The Rain?–starring Nick Nolte in 1978.
- Dog Soldiers’ author Robert Stone, age 74, is considered as one of the greatest living writers by book critic Harold Bloom.
What did Time say?
A weird current pulses through this book. The tale of a heroin deal gone very bad, it’s also a merciless picture of America at the ragged end of the Vietnam era. . . . Bleakness is all in Stone’s world, which is unrelenting and unforgettable.
So here I go, ready to hunker down for another dip in the dark side of humanity. I must admit: I’m totally unfamiliar with Dog Soldiers and Robert Stone.
Am I the only one?