Sardonic, searing, seductive, and surreal, the award-winning Meditations in Green is regarded by many as the best novel of the Vietnam War. It is a kaleidoscopic collage that whirls about an indelible array of images and characters: perverted Winkly, who opted for the army to stay off of welfare; eccentric Payne, who’s obsessed with the film he’s making of the war; and bucolic Claypool, who’s irrevocably doomed to a fate worse than death, just to name a few.
Floating at the center of this psychedelic spin is Specialist 4 James Griffin. In country, Griffin studies the jungle of carpet-bomb photos as he fights desperately to keep his grip on reality. Battling addiction stateside after his tour, he studies the green of household plants as he struggles mightily to regain his sanity. With mesmerizing action and Joycean interior monologues, Stephen Wright has created a book that is as much an homage to the darkness of war as it is a testament to the transcendence of art.
Stephen Wright is a New York–based novelist known for his use of surrealistic imagery and dark comedy. He has taught writing courses at various universities, including Princeton, Brown, and the New School.
©1983 Stephen Wright (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“Precisely that brutal hallucination we desperately wanted to end. This is a writer of wonderfully strong and deep-reaching talents.” (Don DeLillo, National Book Award–winning author)
“Brilliant, scarifying…extravagant, rhapsodic and horrific…It has an overwhelming impact.” (New York Times Book Review)
“Takes one’s breath away.” (The Wall Street Journal)
"Meditations in Green", written by Stephen Wright, is a very dark story that seems to have no coherence. I found it difficult to understand at times because of the way that it was written. There was a lot of drug induced hallucinations in the story, and the story itself was very disorienting. It was a mixture of what was happening while he, the soldier James Griffin, was in Vietnam and what his life was like currently after Vietnam.
It was absurd, but sometimes good. I will have to re-listen to it some time to see if I can understand it better! A very contemporary novel.
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