Still Life With Woodpecker – Romance, Humor and Philosophy Coexist

Still Life With Woodpecker is a risky endeavor: a book that tries to pack so much in, well, it shouldn’t work. But it does work. This is probably why Tom Robbins is hailed as one of the greatest contemporary fiction writers. A good friend was shocked I hadn’t read his work yet, so I hurriedly got myself a copy from the library. I will admit – at first I wasn’t too keen on the story. Robbins story was hard for me to follow, he bounces between the love affair between the protagonist and antagonist while interrupting intermittently to discuss his new Remington typewriter in a type of  stream of consciousness like soliloquy. I felt it came off as a bit pretentious, and the main story bored me a little – mostly because it seemed to be a superficial, formulaic romance story. However, my cynicism eventually gave way to an interest – an interest in how through a seemingly simple story Robbins had managed to get me to reflect on consumerism, individualism, and if romantic love truly exists or is a fleeting farce. I recommend – but only if one is in an open mindset.

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