Vineland by Thomas Pynchon
(Classic, 20th-Century, Penguin)

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 5 Critic Reviews



“Later than usual one summer morning in 1984 . . .” On California’s fog-hung North Coast, the enchanted redwood groves of Vineland County harbor a wild assortment of sixties survivors and refugees from the “Nixonian Reaction,” still struggling with the consequences of their past lives. Aging hippie freak Zoyd Wheeler is revving up for his annual act of televised insanity when news reaches that his old nemesis, sinister federal agent Brock Vond, has come storming into Vineland at the head of a heavily armed Justice Department strike force. Zoyd instantly disappears underground, but not before dispatching his teenage daughter Prairie on a dark odyssey into her secret, unspeakable past. . . .

Freely combining disparate elements from American popular culture—spy thrillers, ninja potboilers, TV soap operas, sci-fi fantasies—Vineland emerges as what Salman Rushdie has called in The New York Times Book Review “that rarest of birds: a major political novel about what America has been doing to itself, to its children, all these many years.”    


About Thomas Pynchon

See more books from this Author
Thomas Pynchon is the author of V., The Crying of Lot 49, Gravity’s Rainbow, Slow Learner, a collection of short stories, Vineland, Mason and Dixon, and, most recently, Against the Day. He received the National Book Award for Gravity’s Rainbow in 1974.
Published June 13, 2012 by The Penguin Press. 402 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Action & Adventure, Horror. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Vineland

Kirkus Reviews

See more reviews from this publication

Meanwhile, the venomous Vond sees to it that Frenesi's hippie husband, Zoyd Wheeler, and her daughter, Prairie, are "disappeared" to Vineland, the northern California town where L.A.

| Read Full Review of Vineland (Classic, 20th-Centu...

Publishers Weekly

See more reviews from this publication

Set in Northern California in 1984 and peopled with quirky characters, Pynchon's latest is a series of brilliant set pieces eventually overwhelmed by its own frenzied exuberance.

| Read Full Review of Vineland (Classic, 20th-Centu...

Entertainment Weekly

Thomas Pynchon — an acquired taste for anyone who didn't grow up in the '60s — reappeared last winter after a silence of six years with VIneland, a postmodern political saga of psychopaths, FBI agents, blacklist veterans, and a family unlike any you've ever encountered in fiction before.

Mar 08 1991 | Read Full Review of Vineland (Classic, 20th-Centu...


Pynchon is still a master at creating vividly cinematic set pieces, whether comic (a punk band unwittingly hired to play at a big mob wedding) or surreal (Japanese scientists examining a crater that turns out to be a huge saurian footprint).

Feb 05 1990 | Read Full Review of Vineland (Classic, 20th-Centu...

London Review of Books

Pynchon’s Thanatoids (which leave Kermode perplexed) are people who, though hardly alive, cannot completely die, because death itself has been infiltrated by television: ‘We are assured by the Bardo Thodol, or Tibetan Book of the Dead, that the soul newly in transition often doesn’t like to admit...

| Read Full Review of Vineland (Classic, 20th-Centu...

Reader Rating for Vineland

An aggregated and normalized score based on 77 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes

Rate this book!

Add Review