COUNTRY MUSIC by C. W. Smith

COUNTRY MUSIC

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Country Music transplants the adolescent conflicts and crossroads of American Graffiti to the trailer parks and beer joints of the oil fields of West Texas, where Bobby Joe Gilbert marks time listlessly and makes Sweet Thangs to establish some kind of, any kind of, reputation with the Hedorville yokels. Like the pinball wizard he is, he flips and slides between girlfriends who recognize his ""potential"": old Same-As-Always clinging vine Nelda Sue, then an intellectual lesbian he meets during his straight-F semester at State U., and finally the spoiled, bottle-blonde C.T. who hogties him into nothing less than marriage. All along there are mysterious references to a fourteen-year-old suicide (she may remind you of the girl the Midnight Cowboy left behind) and this ""secret"" may be some kind of key to Bobby Joe's half-tough, half-tender feelings. Smith's strong point isn't psychology--B.J.'s a little more amorphous than confused and his ladies run too true to their types--but he gets off more than one strong dramatic scene built on solid detail and dialect and an unromanticized vision of the mores and the vague, circumscribed hopes of an entire class of nobodies.

Pub Date: July 18th, 1975
Publisher: Farrar, Straus & Giroux