On the Road
The first iteration of hipsters, in the late 1940s and early 1950s… A book that helped shape the world which followed.
'I read On the Road in maybe 1959. It changed my life like it changed everyone else's'
Sal Paradise, a young innocent, joins his hero, the mystical traveller Dean Moriarty, on a breathless, exuberant ride back and forth across the United States. Their hedonistic search for release or fulfilment through drink, sex, drugs and jazz becomes an exploration of personal freedom, a test of the limits of the American dream. A brilliant blend of fiction and autobiography, Jack Kerouac's exhilarating novel swings to the rhythms of 1950s underground America, racing towards the sunset with unforgettable exuberance, poignancy and autobiographical passion. One of the most influential and important novels of the 20th century, this is the book that launched the Beat Generation and remains the bible of that literary movement.