The Dharma Bums: Penguin Modern Classics Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
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Audible Audiobook, Unabridged
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Jack Kerouac's classic novel about friendship, the search for meaning and the allure of nature.
A witty, moving philosophical novel, Jack Kerouac's The Dharma Bums is a journey of self-discovery through the lens of Zen Buddhist thought. This Penguin Modern Classics edition includes an introduction by Ann Douglas.
Following the explosive energy of On the Road, the book that put the Beat Genration on the literary map - and Jack Kerouac on the best-seller list - comes The Dharma Bums, in which Kerouac charts the spiritual quest of a group of friends in search of Dharma, or truth. Ray Smith and his friend, Japhy, along with Morley the yodeller, head off into the high Sierras to seek the lesson of solitude and experience the Zen way of life. But in wildly Bohemian San Francisco, with its poetry jam sessions, marathon drinking bouts and experiments in 'yabyum', they find the ascetic route distinctly hard to follow.
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|Listening Length||7 hours and 16 minutes|
|Author||Jack Kerouac, Ann Douglas|
|Audible.com.au Release Date||20 May 2021|
|Best Sellers Rank|| 18,311 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
181 in Coming of Age Fiction (Audible Books & Originals)
551 in Classic Literature
741 in Literary Fiction (Audible Books & Originals)
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Top reviews from other countries
"The Dharma Bums" is a naked disquisition on all those cool existential questions. Quite Buddhist, of course, in its flavour, and not without moments of profundity. It seems to divide opinion though. Perhaps it's a bit naive, self-indulgent - pretentious in places. A sort of youthful exuberance pervades; something of the excitable teenager at times. (Though Ray is in his early thirties.) And sticklers will quibble, of course, over the veracity and accuracy of the Buddhist theory and experience...
Still, there's a genuine, urgent, poetic imperative going on - a real lust for life and self-exploration that comes from the heart. It's hard to fault the source of this outpouring, however occasionally misjudged the results. Quite often though, whilst forming these snooty opinions, a line will trip you over with its acuity.
"Standing on my head before bedtime on that rock roof of the moonlight I could indeed see that the earth was truly upside-down and a man a weird vain beetle full of strange ideas walking around upside-down and boasting."
That said, one small flaw is that the (hyperlinked) table of contents is a plain 1, 2,3, 4 list of chapters. Adding the first line of each chapter would have helped navigate what is, by definition, a rambling and stream-of-consciousness novel.
You can't go wrong with great writers and the benefit of hindsight, so we buy these editions (if we're honest) for how good they look on our bookshelf (real or virtual.) And with cover designs, Penguin's still getting it right after 50 years. A good edition of a classic.