Lonesome Rangers

Homeless Minds, Promised Lands, Fugitive Cultures

An exciting and far reaching new book on writers and exile by the leading literary critic John Leonard

John Leonard, “the fastest wit in the East” (The New York Times Book Review), is back with the offbeat, wide-ranging style that earned his last book, When the Kissing Had to Stop, a place among the Voice Literary Supplement’s “25 Favorites of 1999.” Now, with an eye to the social and political experience of writers, Leonard adopts a broad definition of exile.

He addresses Robert Putnam’s Bowling Alone, where exile manifests itself in solitary bowling, a reflection of a declining sense of community. He considers Salman Rushdie as rock’n’roll Orpheus, who—after ten years in fatwa-enforced exile—bears a striking resemblance to his continually disappearing characters. And Leonard also explores Primo Levi’s exile of survival, Bruce Chatwin’s self-imposed exile in travel, as well as the work of Saul Bellow, Ralph Ellison, Phillip Roth, Barbara Kingsolver, and Don DeLillo, among others.

As always, Leonard’s writing jumps off the page, engaging the reader in what the Washington Post calls his “laugh-out-loud magic with words.”

Books by John Leonard

Smoke and Mirrors
Violence, Television, and Other American Cultures

John Leonard

The Last Innocent White Man in America
And Other Writings

John Leonard

When the Kissing Had To Stop
Cult Studs, Khmer Newts, Langley Spooks, Techno-Geeks, Video Drones, Author Gods, Serial Killers, Vampire Media, Alien Sperm Suckers, Satanic Therapists, and Those of Us Who Hold a Left-Wing Grudge in the Post-Toasties New World Hip-Hop

John Leonard