The Memory Of Running

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The present chapters are all consecutive, but his memories of the past jump around somewhat.


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At the beginning of the book, Smithy is an alcoholic, and throughout the book he encounters others whose lives have been overwhelmed by alcohol or drugs. What do you think the author is saying about addiction and the stress and strain of daily life? Smithy reads a number of novels about the American West while on the road. How do these relate to his own story?

Yet Bethany is always the one who tells Smithy the truth. What do you think the author is saying about madness?

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Why do you think this is? On the road, Smithy encounters many people—a compassionate priest, an eccentric Greenwich Village artist, a man dying of AIDS, an angry black youth, a Colorado family, a seductive fellow cyclist, a truck driver haunted by the past, and an empathetic Asian mortician, among others.

Most of the encounters are marked by kindness, some by violence, and some by both. How is Smithy changed by the people he meets? What do these people tell us about the American character?

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His junior prom is a disaster. The prostitutes he patronizes in Vietnam hate him.

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His only emotional ties are to his parents and to the memory of his older sister, Bethany, who has been missing for 20 years. Then his parents die in a car crash and he learns of Bethany's death in LA County. Suddenly there isn't enough beer in the world to keep Smithy from his feelings.


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Drunk and bereft, he takes his old Raleigh bicycle and starts cycling. Once he starts, he can't stop and then he's riding across America to recover his sister. Send via FTP.

The Memory of Running | Ron McLarty

Product Number EB Released: Jun 05, Business Term: 2 Year. Publisher: Penguin Books. Product recommendations. Art in America by Ron McLarty. Traveler by Ron McLarty. The Naked Detective by Laurence Shames. Notes from a Small I The Ranch by Danielle Steel. The Frumious Banders Long Way from Chicag Lead, Sell, or Get O The End of Molasses