“Harrison spins the common chaff of a road trip into gold. . . . peppered with his characteristic insights and asides. . . . After a long and idiosyncratic literary career, Harrison the storyteller is still at the top of his game.” Tim McNulty, The Seattle Times
The English Major
978-0-8021-4414-0 • $14.00 • Paperback • Oct. 2009
Jim Harrison has been called “a writer with immortality in him” by London’s Sunday Times and The New York Times Book Review has written that “[his] storytelling instincts are nearly flawless.” Harrison’s last novel, Returning to Earth, was one of his most praised in years, hailed by The Plain Dealer as “an artistic achievement worthy of Faulkner.” The English Major is a wryly funny novel that sparkles with the generous humanity of his vision.
“It used to be Cliff and Vivian and now it isn’t.” With these words, Jim Harrison begins a riotous, moving novel that sends a sixty-something man, divorced and robbed of his farm by a late-blooming real estate shark of an exwife, on a road trip across America, armed with a childhood puzzle of the United States and a mission to rename all the states and state birds to overcome the banal names men have given them. Cliff ’s adventures take him through a whirlwind affair with a former student from his high schoolteacher days twenty-some years before, to a “snake farm” in Arizona owned by an old classmate; and to the highoctane existence of his son, a big-time movie producer who has just bought an apartment over the Presidio in San Francisco.
The English Major is the map of a man’s journey intoand out ofhimself, and it is vintage Harrisonreflective, big-picture American, and replete with wicked wit.