Letters To Kevin by Stephen Dixon

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A wide streak of the whimsical strangeness of Lewis Carroll and Shel Silverstein runs through Letters, but not enough profundity or poignancy. Dixon, however, does succeed in delivering a breezy, goofily illustrated road-trip of a tale...
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Synopsis

In this fictional prose novel, reminiscent of Scorsese's After Hours, a New York man goes on a nightmare-logic adventure when he tries place a phone call.

Rudy, a goodhearted fellow in New York, has been trying to phone Kevin Wafer, a kid he knows in Palo Alto, California. Only trouble is, one thing or another keeps getting in the way. For starters, Rudy doesn’t have a phone in his apartment, and he can’t manage to get a dial tone on his pillow or his alarm clock. When he tries to use a pay phone, the phone booth gets carried off by a crane, deposited in a warehouse, and left with Rudy trapped inside. What’s worse, the only repairman who shows up can’t help because he’s due to leave on his vacation and won’t be back for a month. Rudy tries to call for help, but all he can get on the line are other people locked inside other phone booths located other in warehouses all over the world. The only sensible thing for Rudy to do is to sit down with his trusty portable typewriter and write Kevin a letter, telling him what’s happened. Like Bob Dylan’s “115th Dream,” Letters to Kevin obeys a certain logic, but it’s a shifty, nighttime logic that’s full of surprises. Letters to Kevin is an absurdist, screwball farce, and certainly Stephen Dixon’s wildest and weirdest book ever. It’s also, sneakily, one of his most affecting. Black & white illustrations by the author
 

About Stephen Dixon

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Stephen Dixon was born in 1936 in New York City. He is a former professor of creative writing at Johns Hopkins University and still hammers out his fiction on a vintage typewriter. He is also a two time National Book Award nominee - for his novels Frog and Interstate.
 
Published May 17, 2016 by Fantagraphics. 176 pages
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Reviewed by Jason Heller on May 22 2016

A wide streak of the whimsical strangeness of Lewis Carroll and Shel Silverstein runs through Letters, but not enough profundity or poignancy. Dixon, however, does succeed in delivering a breezy, goofily illustrated road-trip of a tale...

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