The Fan Man

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Vintage Books, 1994 - Fiction - 191 pages
2 Reviews
Horse Badorties wanders around Manhattan's Lower East Side making love and distributing polyphonic sheet music.

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A friend introduced me to this book in high school - and it was such irreverent fun that I picked up another Kotzwinkle book, "Doctor Rat", in college. I've become addicted to this wonderful author's view of the world and magnificent wording, sometimes silly and pointless, as when we become Horse Badorties, man, wandering the streets of New York and living in the way only he can, and sometimes totally serious and touching, as in "Swimmer in the Secret Sea". Kotzwinkle is pure genius.
And of course, I no longer call my winter hat choice a "bomber hat". I have the official leather version of the Commander Schmuck Korean Earflap Cap (and calling it that always makes my boss look at me like I'm a few cards short of a deck). Horse has so much fun that I actually thought about moving to New York at one point - until I realized that I have no need of being among that many people.
For a bit of fun, read this book.
If you're too busy looking for a message in every story, you shouldn't be reading anything I recommend.


Foreword to the TwentiethAnniversary Edition
Horse Badorties Number One Pad
Horse Badorties Satchel

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About the author (1994)

William Kotzwinkle was born in 1938 in Scranton, Pennsylvania. He attended Rider College and Pennsylvania State University.He worked as an editor and writer in the 1960s. William Kotzwinkle is an accomplished author who is best known for his book of the film E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, but who has produced a range of work for both adults and children that often transgresses genre boundaries and the distinction between serious and popular fiction. Beginning as a children's writer with The Fireman, he then published novels for adults such as Hermes 3000, The Fan Man, and Queen of Swords, which began to establish him as an original and distinctive novelist. But it was Doctor Rat that made his reputation as a powerful fantasy writer with a sharp satirical edge. The novel focuses upon laboratory rats whose spokesman, the Doctor Rat of the title, eventually escapes from the vast laboratory where experiments on his fellow-creatures are taking place, and whose adventures are interwoven with shorter tales told by animals of different kinds who finally try to form a whole that will make humans more peaceful and benign. But they are all killed. William Kotzwinkle is a novelist and poet, who is known for his broad range of style and subject. He is a two-time recipient of the National Magazine Award for Fiction, a National Book Critics Circle Award nominee. He lives with his wife, author Elizabeth Gundy, in Maine. He has won the World Fantasy Award for Best Novel for Doctor Rat in 1977. He published The Million Dollar Bear in 1994.

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