Like so many young people coming of age in the 1970’s this book was hugely influential to me. Thirty years later I learned it wasn’t just a relic of time and place when my 20-year-old nephew found his way to it and we bonded over the still perplexing issues the book takes on– clashing technological and spiritual worlds and cultural divides every bit as deep today as they were a generation ago.
You know by now of author Robert M. Pirsig’s passing. The obituaries have done a great job of contextualizing this uniquely American novel which explores fundamental questions of how to live one’s life.
As USA Today noted in one of last week’s many pieces, “The book was praised as a unique and masterful blend of narrative and philosophy and was compared to Moby Dick by New Yorker critic George Steiner, who wrote that Pirsig’s story ‘lodges in the mind as few recent novels have.’”
Two generations of McCunes are here to agree. Booksellers, now is the right time to give this one another tour on the front tables.
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values (9780060839871) by Robert M. Pirsig. $16.99 trade paper. Available.