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Wild Animus: A Novel

A book by Rich Shapero

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I HATE TO SAY IT, BUT THIS IS REALLY AN AWFUL BOOK. Read it if you must, but don't say you were not warned.

  • Jul 30, 2010
I fear I am not one of those people who received this book free. No, I was luckier than that. I actually checked the CD version of this book out from our local library. I say I was lucky in this sense because I was able to simply check my book back into the library and do no have to worry about disposing of the thing.

I will also admit that I was unable to listen to the entire book. I was very, very proud to make it through the first four CDs. Folks, beyond a doubt, this is by far the worse novel I have ever read or listened to.

Briefly put, you have a young fellow back in the 1960s who is overly fond of LSD. He is going to school at Berkley. He meets a very hot girl. He sees a picture of a mountain goat in a magazine and decides he either is a goat or wanted to be a goat or wants to be like a goat...I never did figure that part out. Anyway, he and this really hot chick drop more acid, make love (I think that is what they were doing) and then run off to Alaska so he can be a goat, or at least be like a goat...I still have not figured out that part yet.

SPOILER HERE: The author gives away the ending of the book in the beginning so if you do not want to know that the goat guy dies in the end don't read the first few pages of the book. Tripping around the mountains of the Alaskan wilderness on acid acting like a goat and he dies...go figure.

I could go into the plot line of this work, or lack of it, go for pages upon pages about the horrid dialog and write an additional ten or so pages on the author description of "acid trips," and my oh my, the love making scenes! I swear if I had read this when I was in my early teens I would have taken an oath of celibacy. I will spare you that though. Just trust me in the fact that you will never read anything like this again.

I have to be honest here. I stopped listening to this book during the episode when this goat guy and this hot chick (the love of his life) are making love in the bush on a mountainside in Alaska. They have been watching a group of goats on another ridge,and they get all hot and bothered in this watching and decide to kick it right there. As they are making love the guy says to the girl..."lets do it like they do it." Yup, over on her hand and knees she goes...that is not the end though...no, no, no! While they are doing it like "them," this large ram comes up and starts watching the two people. (I shudder to think what is going through that poor goats mind). The guy then looks up and has some sort of religious experience while looking into the goat's eyes. The hot chick seems upset...go figure. Yes folks, I kid you not! I bailed out at that point.

Now on the upside....well, er, for the life of me, I was unable to find an upside to this read. Sorry.

Don Blankenship
The Ozarks

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Don Blankenship ()
Ranked #228
Retirement does not suit me and I now substitute teach in our local schools system. I spent twenty years in the military, twenty years in health care as a consultant and have taught in various colleges … more
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About this book


Shapero unwisely uses the prologue of his debut novel to divulge the ending, so the remaining 300 pages do little more than track one man's tedious journey toward acid-induced madness. Drug dealer Sam Altman, an unhappy and lonely student at the University of California–Berkeley in the late 1960s, meets and falls in love with equally unhappy and lonely Lindy at an antiwar protest. Attempting to evade arrest for drug dealing, the couple flee to Washington State, where Sam's chronic use of LSD leads him to cut himself off from his friends, change his name to Ransom and yearn to become "a fur-covered shaman, a wild ram-man, chanting the liturgy of surrender." The pair end up in Alaska, where she waitresses to support him while he writes a novel, masquerades as a mountain ram and imagines he's being chased by a rout of wolves. Though Ransom's hallucinations worsen by the day, Lindy and his few remaining friends are too intimidated by his behavior and unhappy themselves to intervene, leaving him to his tragic and inevitable end (which, of course, has already been divulged). Shapero does have a talent for vivid imagery, but this is still just a sad tale of a man whose drug addiction drives him and everyone around him crazy.
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ISBN-10: 0971880107
Author: Rich Shapero
Genre: Fiction
Publisher: Too Far Pub

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