Follow Here To Purchase The Sea Is My Brother: The Lost Novel

Author: Jack Kerouac

Publisher: Da Capo Press ( A Member of the Perseus Books Group)

ISBN: 9780306821257

There is a reason Jack Kerouac is one of the iconic authors of his century. As a writer and as a human being I remember his influence. I suspect many of us would have to say our lives might not have taken the directions that they did but for his validation.  This first novel,  this lost novel, helps us remember what was then and should be now important.

It is an important new read, and it is important for the insight it gives Kerouac fans into his development as a writer and a thinker.  What is most notable is the immediate relevance of his work whether in the 1940s, 1960s or this very minute.  For instance:

But I’ll tell you something, those years taught me one lesson, and that was not to trust a lot of things. I always believed in the working class movement, even though I allowed it to slip my mind, but I know now what I didn’t believe in all those years, with more unconscious rancor than with conscious hate.” Bill peered eagerly.

What was that?# asked Nick with cold suspicion.

Politics for one thing, sheer politics. Politicians  survive only if they make certain concessions; if they don’t they go out of office. Thus, idealist or not, a politician is always faced with a vexing choice, sooner or later, between justice and survival. This will inevitably serve to mar his ideals won’t it.?”

That sounds natural, what else?”

A dependence on a group . .  . I mistrust that, first because it means bending one’s mind to a dogmatic group will. When I say this, I refer not to an economic group where, to my mind sharing and sharing alike is only natural and inevitable too. I mean a spiritual group. . .  . there should be no such thing as a spiritual group; each man to his own spirit, Meade, each man to his own soul.”

What are you telling me this for?” Nick snapped.

You have to love dialogue that really says something and these characters talk (and argue) through the ideals and realities that the young Kerouac was clearly trying to work out in his own mind just as so many of his most devoted readers were also trying to work out in their minds back in the day. We can only hope that the young people of today are at least thinking about such things.  If you are a Kerouac fan I highly recommend you read this first lost novel. If you never treated yourself to his work, I highly recommend you begin with this first novel and thence on the rest of his opus.

Follow Here To Purchase The Sea Is My Brother: The Lost Novel