Thursday, February 4, 2010

General Fiction – Kesey, Kilworth & Kotzwinkle

To begin, two single novels (though they wrote others) by Ken Kesey and Garry Kilworth.

Sometimes A Great Notion derives its name from the famous Huddie Ledbetter (Leadbelly) song “Goodnight Irene”, a song that has peculiar significance to me from my childhood, which I won’t go into here. It is Kesey’s second novel, not as famous as One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, but well worth including in anyone’s book collection.

Garry Kilworth’s Witchwater Country is a rather good coming of age novel – slightly spooky. I must admit it is the only one of his novels that I have read.

kesey_notion kilworth_witchwater1987

Now on to William Kotzwinkle, known mostly as a writer of comic novels. His somewhat bizzare novels were very popular back in the 1970s, most particularly The Fan Man – the archetypical 60s novel. The edition pictured is 1977 Penguin.


Doctor Rat won the World Fantasy Award for Best Novel in 1977. It’s a savage satirical novel about vivisection. The paperback edition has a fantastic, though gruesome cover.


More William Kotzwinkle – with interesting cover art.

kotzwinkle_elephant kotzwinkle_fata
kotzwinkle_jackinthebox kotzwinkle_queenofswords
kotzwinkle_nightbook kotzwinkle_swimmer

Next – Lampedusa and other authors whose names start with “L” & “M”

1 comment:

Rachael said...

That Kotzwinkle cover for "Swimmer in the Secret Sea" is terrifying considering the subject matter. It was just reissued in the US. I think the cover is much better though less indicative of Kotzwinkle's occasional weirdness.