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Rubicon Beach: A Novel [Paperback]

Steve Erickson


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Paperback, April 1997 --  

Book Description

April 1997
A prisoner with a haunted past is released into ravaged Los Angeles, where he pursues an elusive girl to the shores or Rubicon Beach and faces his lost destiny. In his second novel, Steve Erickson creates a decaying world filled with leftover passions and poetic vision that established him as one of the most original and evocative American writers of his generation.

Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Henry Holt & Co (P); Reprint edition (April 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 080505071X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805050714
  • Product Dimensions: 20.6 x 14 x 2.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 386 g

Product Description

From Library Journal

Through ponderous, interwoven tales travels a dark, mysterious woman who dazzles men and makes them act silly. In the futuristic Los Angeles of an unspecified cataclysm, Cale witnesses his own murder at the hands of this elusive beauty. Somewhere in South America, she ties herself to a tree with her hair and signals to a sailor with her lighthouse eyes, then winds up as domestic help in modern-day Los Angeles, where, by staring a lot and saying little, she drives a frustrated writer into a frenzy. Finally, she mesmerizes a recluse in England with the old lighthouse trick, and he turns out to be the Cale of the first storyminus the futurism. This contrived, humorless mishmash of pseudo-fantasy and mystery leaves one hopelessly confused. The characters are pure Hollywood, straight from a B movie. Leonard Kniffel, Detroit P.L.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.7 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hauntingly beautiful, written beyond time and space July 22 1997
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I cannot possibly recommend this book enough. One could spend a decade reading this book with a shovel and still not find all the levels underneath. Erickson's gorgeous prose has gorgeous ideas to back it up. This book is about everything and everywhere, from the country of America and what lies to the West, to one little girl beautiful beyond compare with eyes that are blades of light. I do not have the word capacity to fully describe this book. But it is not for the weak. Ignore logic and physical time or space before you dare attempt it. Erickson fightened and delighted me. There cannot possibly be another book like it
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A book of visions Dec 13 1996
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Steve Erickson doesn't write novels; he chronicles dreams. Set in a futurtist LA, where water floods the streets, the narrator goes about a mysterious quest. This is a book of shadow and light, enigma and truth. It will frustrate and amaze you at the same time. It is a rare book that looks to your intuition, rather than your mind, to decipher. Gorgeous and unsettling, like the best of Dali
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars When's the movie coming out?? Sept. 23 1997
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
A very ethereal and dreamlike book, it would make an amazing movie, probably directed by Ridley Scott or Wim Wenders. A journey into our minds, into America and into the spirit of Los Angeles. Having just moved to LA recently, I have been experiencing the surreal, alien nature of this city and Rubicon Beach expressed it perfectly.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Made an Impression on Me May 7 2013
By Ned D. Hayes - Published on Amazon.com
Rubicon Beach was a book I read in my 20s, and I living a post-college hand-to-mouth existence in the same Los Angeles Steve Erickson lived in (he worked as a film reviewer for the wonderful-at-the-time L.A. Weekly -- I taught school and wrote for a less prestigious alternative weekly).

I was reading a lot of Joan Didion at the time, alongside some old fashioned Robert Heinlein and Ray Bradbury SF. I was also writing my first novel, modeled after Pete Dexter's crystal-clear and lucid prose. So this was the context of my reading. (I know, I know, quite a combination.)

The book had a tremendous impact on me as an impressionistic fantastical dystopian novel that took my breath away with the way Erickson managed to insert genuine human emotion and pathos into a story that in other hands would have been your basic throwaway SF drama.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A beach to try to figure out. May 20 2008
By Dick Johnson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book is mostly set in America (maybe); it's about dreams (perhaps) and death (somewhat); a girl (who sometimes isn't); a guy (most of the time is unless he's not); you'll understand after you've read it (doubtful).

Erickson is always fun to read, if for no other reason than to give your brain a workout. I'm not trying to compare these folks, but if you like Vollman, D. F. Wallace, Pynchon, etc., then you will probably like Erickson. Not liking any of them doesn't preclude you from liking Erickson, though.

I'm reading Erickson's books in the order he wrote them, but I let a few months pass in between.

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