I just finished local Madisonian T.A. Sedlak's debut novel, Anarcho Grow. I spotted it at A Room of One's Own the other day, and its cover sucked me in. It's one of the most colorful, intricate covers I've ever seen on a book. Then I find out that the same man who did Tom Robbins' covers did it.
Anyway, to the novel. It's set in Costa Rica, where I visited a few years back. I have to say that the description couldn't be better. The sights, sounds, and smells, brought me right back, making me think of experiences that I had previously forgotten. If one hasn't been, I think there isn't a clearer picture out there. T.A. doesn't romanticize it or darken it in a Conradian way. It's the real deal.
The plot is about someone who had done community development volunteer work in a small village there. After college, he goes back there to help out the people through other means-guerrilla growing. The book opens with a lot of tension/action and it doesn't stop much as the C.I.A. trailing him there.
T.A. is, obviously, a smart guy. While the word "Anarchism" isn't used more than a couple times in the whole book, he showed me what it really is, even letting me know that a man I admire, Noam Chomsky, subscribes to it. After the read, I'm even thinking that the values of Kurt Vonnegut were more Anarchist than Socialist, as he always claimed to be.
Definitely worth checking out.
What books, zines or other pulp are you reading? What aren't you reading? What should everyone else read?
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