Wherein We Elect Our Favourite Novels of 1966

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Yeah---I also enjoyed David Hajdu's Positively 4th Street: The Lives and Times of Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, Mimi Baez Fariña and Richard Fariña(with substantial faxed input from Pynchon). He tried to be the Svengali for his first wife, Carolyn Hester, but it didn't go that well--for one thing, she wasn't up to his standards as a solo artist---but duets with Mimi were more satisfactory. (Marcus and xgau freaked out over what they took to be too much credit given to RF's early influence on Dylan, but seemed to me like he just encouraged D. to write more, and maybe turned him on to better weed).

dow, Monday, 10 May 2021 18:40 (five months ago) link

freaked out over what they took to be too much credit given *by Hajdu*, that is.

dow, Monday, 10 May 2021 18:41 (five months ago) link

I forgot he we married to Carolyn Hester. He's like his namesake, Richard Meyers, in his way with the ladies, I guess.

Working in the POLL Mine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 10 May 2021 18:45 (five months ago) link

Sorry for extra RONG commas!

Working in the POLL Mine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 10 May 2021 18:46 (five months ago) link

extra, RONG

Working in the POLL Mine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 10 May 2021 18:46 (five months ago) link

Heh, classic exchange between the two of us in every way.

Working in the POLL Mine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 10 May 2021 18:51 (five months ago) link

Richard HELL Myers, I take it you mean? What a colorful guy: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Fari%C3%B1a Correction: it wasn't a wedding---

On April 30, 1966, two days after the publication of his novel, Fariña attended a book-signing ceremony at a Carmel Valley Village bookstore, the Thunderbird. Later that day, while at a party to celebrate his wife Mimi Fariña's twenty-first birthday, Fariña saw a guest with a motorcycle, who later gave Fariña a ride up Carmel Valley Road, heading east toward the rural Cachagua area of Carmel Valley.

At an S-turn the driver lost control. The motorcycle tipped over on the right side of the road, came back to the other side, and tore through a barbed wire fence into a field where a small vineyard now exists. The driver survived, but Fariña was killed instantly. According to Pynchon's preface to Been Down..., the police said the motorcycle must have been traveling at 90 miles per hour (140 km/h), even though "a prudent speed" would have been 30 miles per hour (48 km/h).

Fariña is buried in a simple grave, its marker emblazoned with a peace sign, at Monterey City Cemetery in Monterey, California.[12]

dow, Monday, 10 May 2021 18:58 (five months ago) link

Yes, I almost got even cuter by referring to him as Richie Meyers, but even I have some vestigial standards.

Working in the POLL Mine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 10 May 2021 19:00 (five months ago) link

Commas, how do they work?

Working in the POLL Mine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 10 May 2021 19:00 (five months ago) link

Forgot that Gravity's Rainbow is dedicated to him. He did more than I knew:http://www.richardandmimi.com/
http://www.richardandmimi.com/vanguardtribute.jpg

dow, Monday, 10 May 2021 19:02 (five months ago) link

Yeah, commas are a pain.

dow, Monday, 10 May 2021 19:03 (five months ago) link

I think the only two I've read are "Crying of Lot 49" and "Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up To Me". I think that I read "Flowers for Algernon" at some point, but probably the short story version. I have fond memories of reading COL49, but BDSLILLUTM was kind of a disappointment. No doubt I picked it up because of the Pynchon intro. Both share an appreciation for the culture of elaborate pranks that is the purest efflorescence of a certain nerdy subculture that flourishes in tightly regimented environments, e.g. the military.

o. nate, Monday, 10 May 2021 19:12 (five months ago) link

lot 49 is my least fave of the pynchon i've read, it's really good but loses a little of its magic by the end imo

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Monday, 10 May 2021 19:13 (five months ago) link

This may be the hardest one yet for me. I’ve read a bunch and no clear favorites. Although...

Working in the POLL Mine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 10 May 2021 19:16 (five months ago) link

Automatic thread bump. This poll is closing tomorrow.

System, Wednesday, 12 May 2021 00:01 (five months ago) link

Voted for the one I read more than once

Working in the POLL Mine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 12 May 2021 13:26 (five months ago) link

That's supposed to be Three, not Berg.

― Daniel_Rf

Well.

I was hoping to be more excitable and campaign-y and in-depth for these ones where some of my favourite books of all time are appearing, but bad life stuff is happening and I just don't have the energy. The main thrust of what I was going to say about this year's AQ/BSJ match-up goes something like:

- Trawl is honestly lesser Johnson and wouldn't stand much of a chance against any Quin book...
- ...but particularly not against Three, which imo is her best and everyone should read this book.

emil.y, Wednesday, 12 May 2021 16:00 (five months ago) link

i voted for in cold blood lol

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Wednesday, 12 May 2021 16:03 (five months ago) link

Torn between Season of Migration and Lot 49, but The Laughing Policeman and The Comedians are excellent too (big lols in each obv).

JoeStork, Wednesday, 12 May 2021 17:10 (five months ago) link

The Laughing Policeman is great, but that's one where I wish I could vote for the series rather than the individual book.

Voted Crying of Lot 49. I don't think I've read it since I was a kid, but it's part of my mental landscape; little fragments of it, like "potsmaster" and "Hey, solid citizen, we just pinched your boat," float into my mind all the time.

Lily Dale, Wednesday, 12 May 2021 17:18 (five months ago) link

Lot 49 is diverting but extremely minor compared to what came later imo

Gravity's Rainbow is dedicated to Fariña

imago, Wednesday, 12 May 2021 17:20 (five months ago) link

Oh wait it's been said

imago, Wednesday, 12 May 2021 17:21 (five months ago) link

I have irrationally disliked Richard Farina ever since reading David Hajdu's book Positively 4th Street; Hajdu seemed so determined to elevate Farina as a misunderstood genius and downplay Dylan's talent that it made me instinctively (and quite unfairly) resent Farina when my actual beef was with Hajdu.

Lily Dale, Wednesday, 12 May 2021 17:25 (five months ago) link

The Comedians is good too; I didn't see it on the list until now. This was a good year.

Lily Dale, Wednesday, 12 May 2021 17:26 (five months ago) link

Automatic thread bump. This poll's results are now in.

System, Thursday, 13 May 2021 00:01 (five months ago) link

A bunch of stuff wuz robbed.

Working in the POLL Mine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 13 May 2021 00:08 (five months ago) link

Wherein We Elect Our Favourite Novels of 1967

Daniel_Rf, Thursday, 13 May 2021 09:50 (five months ago) link

I was somewhat sheepish about voting for Flowers for Algernon, but I reread it relatively recently and it was well worth the revisit. Glad that one of my other choices, Babel-17, got a vote, somewhat dismayed the The Laughing Policeman got shut out.

Working in the POLL Mine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 15 May 2021 17:29 (five months ago) link


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