Go by John Clellon Holmes My rating: 5 of 5 stars Go is generally regarded as the first novel of the Beat Generation, written between and. Go by John Clellon Holmes – book cover, description, publication history. Go, by John Clellon Holmes, is the first novel published by a member of the so- called Beat Generation of the s in the United States. The years immediately .

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Despite being published in the 50s it was full of sex and drugs and jazz. The hopefulness that seemed to hover over these young people early in the novel disintegrates even as their interactions become more clelllon more chaotic.

Holmes has said that the only plot element entirely invented by vo is Kathryn’s infidelity. The Best Books of His portrayal of the beats was different to Kerouac’s they seemed rawer and not as nice.

Book review: Go, by John Clellon Holmes | Khanya

It was a kind of presupposition. This is a chronicle of beat life, not a celebration of it. The emotions and confusion and chaos seem real in these characters, and ultimately, in the absence of meaning, they are haunted holmee death. Holmes tells us what was happening back in New York while Kerouac and Cassidy were off on their wild road trips.

Go: A Novel Summary & Study Guide

This site uses cookies. A pretty great window into the inner workings of the Beats right before they started to publish and become famous. That said, the chapters float by like wild nights on the gritty side of town, broken up only by the bitter mornings-after that Kerouac so assiduously avoided in his more popular books.

A generation with a new consciousness had found its voice Continued from Part 3. Take that, On the Road!

Kerouac’s On the Road is famed for his Continuous Prose and Burrough’s Naked Lunch for its experimental structure, Go in comparison reads as somewhat cleklon and prosaic.


In “Go” Clellon Holmes approached classic literature as opposed to the forging, freshness and gimmicks of bebop prose.

View the Study Pack. Check out the top books of the year on our page Best Books of It was only 20 years beforeyet is now forty years ago. We get to see his real caring nature, his eclectic personality, and his devilish playfulness, including instigating multiple conflicts based on his psychological insightful challenges toward his friends.

The general feels are different enough, Holme’s contribution to the beat generation being entirely situated in New York and following the events of a battered marriage and the wild party lives of a core group as opposed to the cross country jumble of Kerouac’s experiences with one Neal Cassidy; while the latter’s work seems to be one town to the next with little relation outside of the linear trip itself, Holmes puts a more story like effort with a third person narration, not only following his alter ego, Hobbes, but relating events unexperienced by him through a second character, David Stofsky.

Book review: Go, by John Clellon Holmes

Stofsky becomes inadvertently involved in crimes by friends he has been trying to help. While it was obviously based on real people and real events it felt like a novel rather than an autobiography and I think this really worked in it’s favor and added tension.

The other day I came across a question on Quora: He also wrote what is considered the definitive jazz novel of the Beat Generation, The Horn. The book was such an amazingly intense ride, even when it was at it’s most aimless wandering around in search of tea the characters seemed so vivid.

Mumma rated it it was amazing. The most tentative and conservative of the Beats, Holmes’s intelligent and sensitive voice also details the pressures and regrets that his lifestyle gave birth to. Kerouac was all about the kicks, and Holmes is all about the consequences. View all 3 comments. Even this book is overrated, but it can be mildly entertaining in an endearingly pretentious way.


I really really loved this book.

August Learn how and when to remove this template message. I think Kerouac holmex off most like himself. An early Beat Generation novel, but one that I only came across recently, it features characters based on Kerouac, Ginsberg etc. Jan 31, Jay B. It took me a clwllon while to figure out who was who, I really enjoyed this novel, for me it was fascinating to have such a different outlook into the beats.

Go Penguin Modern Classics Author s: Yet it was only ten years later, in that I was reading their books, envying their life, and wondering if hollmes really happened the way John Clellon Holmes and Jack Kerouac described it. Kerouac exposed as a lost boy, a creepy stalker, Ginsberg a gutter punk Angel, Cassady still holmea on another plane. Go is intelligent and observant without a trace of the heavy handed stylistic treatments o DRAFT I liked this book a lot.

All I have to do is avoid its failed ideas. The essence of clwllon book is summed up in the dream of one of the characters, Stofsky a thinly-diguised version of the Beat poet Allen Ginsberg. Spoiled brats with empty vapor on their minds. Holmes gives us a more realistic, less romantic, vision of the Beats, and this helps us put this generation of poets in perspective.

A lost generation …more Bitterness is common to the beats.

But they are the generation I associate with alien things like Frank Sinatra, and males in suits and hats, and women wearing lipstick and nylon stockings, and people trying to get back on their feet after the war.

You were more interesting as living people than the characters in your fever-dream books.