Another Roadside Attraction, by Tom Robbins

Another Roadside Attraction, by Tom Robbins book coverGenre:  Fantasy
Publisher:  Bantam Books
Published: 1971
Reviewer Rating: four and a half stars
Reviewer:  Michael D. Griffiths

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Another Roadside Attraction, by Tom Robbins was published in part as a tribute to the creativity and individuality which developed out of the 60s. The story centers around a free thinking and beautiful young clairvoyant, named Amanda, who questions all reality and makes up her own mind about what is right and then behaves accordingly. She marries a magician, complete with a pet baboon, and they set out to make their own type of roadside attraction in the woods of Washington State.

They live off the land and expand their minds in an Eden of sorts which they perfect for themselves. All might have continued this way had not a spirit of chaos, in the form of Plucky Purcell, who quite by accident, joined a secret sect of military Catholics serving the pope.

He gets assigned to the Vatican, and one random earthquake later, he discovers the corpse of Jesus Christ. This of course questions the legitimacy of the creator of Christianity being a divine being. After stealing the body, he brings it to what has become perhaps the most controversial road attraction in the history of mankind.

Robbins is a splendid writer. Like an artist with a blank canvas, he paints Amanda as a dashing anarchistic figure with a wisdom as deep as the earth. The book examines and reexamines both popular and novel philosophical content, against a backdrop of colorful freedom.

Such a well written book has few downsides, but any supernatural feats are downplayed and this book is more literary, thoughtful, and comic over fantasy or action.

If someone would like to veer away from the norm and enjoy a brilliant novel which sets out not only to entertain, but perhaps expand your mind, this book should be part of your A list.

Skinjumpers, by Michael D. Griffiths

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