(US, 1936– )
Born in North Carolina, Tom Robbins studied art, drama, and music before turning his hand to surreal comic fiction. His most celebrated book is Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (1976), an irreverent Western about Sissy Hankshaw, a woman whose oversized thumb grants her Zen-like hitch-hiking powers, and her involvement with a cosmetics manufacturer and a gang of rebellious cowgirls. Another Roadside Attraction (1971) is set at a combination burger-bar, zoo, and flea-circus where a drummer and an ex-clairvoyant meet against a background of motorcycles, soft drugs, and whimsical philosophy to discover their fates. Jitterbug Perfume (1984) is a tale about a janitor in possession of a leaky bottle rumoured to contain the elixir of life. Robbins's cult combination of folksy wisdom and psychedelic story-telling has appealed to wide audiences in recent years.
Ishmael Reed, Richard Brautigan, Robert M. Pirsig WB