The Serpents of Paradise: A Reader

Front Cover
Henry Holt and Company, May 15, 1996 - Fiction - 400 pages
11 Reviews
From boyhood in Home, Pennsylvania, to his death in Tucson, Arizona, in 1989, this book offers - in Abbey's own words - the world of an American original. Whether writing fact or fiction, Abbey was always an autobiographer. Each of the thirty-five selections presented here, arranged chronologically by date of incident (not of publication), demonstrates that Abbey was passionately, insistently his own man. As poet-farmer Wendell Berry puts it: "He remains Edward Abbey, speaking as and for himself, fighting, literally, for dear life ... for the survival not only of nature, but of human nature, of culture, as only our heritage of works and hopes can define it." To speak for the voiceless was his mission. He was a virtuoso of the well-phrased thought in which style and content, symbol and meaning - each imbued with humor - come together to defy the powerful, reminding us always that preservation of wild nature is a key to a free spirit. And along with Emerson and Thoreau, Abbey, the uncompromising stylist, knew that the corruption of language follows the corruption of man. "Language, " Abbey wrote, "seeks to transcend itself, 'to grasp the thing that has no name.'"

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
5
4 stars
2
3 stars
2
2 stars
1
1 star
1

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - eduscapes - LibraryThing

Fictional and factual. Abbey was an independent thinker, an extremist, a 'desert mystic,' and a prolific writier. Here his longtime editior, John Macrae, has put together a collection of Edward Abbey ... Read full review

Review: The Serpents of Paradise: A Reader

User Review  - Annette - Goodreads

Fictional and factual. Abbey was an independent thinker, an extremist, a 'desert mystic,' and a prolific writier. Here his longtime editior, John Macrae, has put together a collection of Edward Abbey ... Read full review

Other editions - View all

References to this book

About the author (1996)

Edward Abbey was born in 1927 in Pennsylvania. He earned graduate and postgraduate degrees from the University of New Mexico. He wrote Desert Solitaire while working as a Park Ranger in Utah. He is also the author of The Monkey Wrench Gang, Abbey's Road, and The Journey Home, among others. He died in March 1989.

Bibliographic information