“[A] pleasant and underrated surprise . . . [Visions of Gerard] has a winning simplicity and sweetness.” —The Washington Post The first book in Kerouac's Duluoz Legend, a novella detailing the writer's early life as refracted through the prism of the untimely loss of his brotherUnique among Jack Kerouac's novels, Visions of Gerard captures the scenes and sensations of earliest childhood, the first four years in the life of Ti Jean Duluoz as they unfold in the short, tragic-happy life of his brother, Gerard. Set in Kerouac's hometown of Lovell, Massachusetts, childhood's intensity, innocence, suffering, and delight unfold as Gerard interacts with animals, has visions of Our Lady in heaven, astonishes the priest in the church confessional, and observes his family as they laugh and drink and weep—that is, when he isn't sick and confined to bed.A novel that Kerouac called "my best most serious sad and true book yet," Visions of Gerard is a beautiful, unsettling, and melancholic exploration of the meaning and precariousness of existence.Review by Publisher Summary 2
"My best most serious sad and true book yet." Jack Kerouac"His life . . . ended when he was nine and the nuns of St. Louis de France Parochial School were at his bedside to take down his dying workds becase they'd heard his astonishing revelations of heaven delivered in catechism on no more encouragement than it was his turn to speak. . . ."Unique among Jack Kerouac's novels, Visions of Gerard focuses on the scenes and sensations of childhoodthe wisdom, anguish, intensity, innocence, evil, insight, suffering, delight, and shockas they were revealed in the short tragic-happy life of his saintly brother, Gerard. Set in Kerouac's hometown of Lowell, Massachusetts, it is an unsettling, beautiful, and sad exploration of the meaning and precariousness of existence.