THE LUIS ARMED STORY by Tom Veitch

THE LUIS ARMED STORY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A virtually unreadable exercise in avant-garde narration, originally written in 1965--so the style (cf. William Burroughs and others), socio-political tone, and many references are all sadly dated. In various shifting voices--first-person, third-person, fairy-tale, news report, free-associative, dadaist collage, etc.--Veitch gives us the story of Luis Armed: drug addict, jealous lover and killer of his whoring sister Rosa (""What a cunt! What a girl!""), Con Edison research man, and latter-day saint. (""And this. . . is a remnant of the Lord's own fart. It cures headaches and piles."") There's a surfeit of self-consciously blasphemous religious satire, Catholic division; also some requisite 1960s political cartoons (""President Johnson aims the loaded derringer at J. Edgar Hoover and pulls the trigger""). And Veitch goes all-out, Dada-wise, by interrupting this free-form narrative to give us the book's place in literary history: ""In short, several significant Dada strategies. . . continue to inform significant recent fictional work. . . ."" But Veitch's work is actually derivative and catch-all rather than innovative; so, even as unread artifact of a literary movement, this is of limited interest. *Because of a serious mistake in the original review, this book has been re-reviewed.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1978
Publisher: Full Court Press (15 Laight St., N.Y., N.Y. 10013)