American Desert

American Desert

By Percival Everett (2004)

This is a easy reading book, quite funny and sadistic too.

Theodore Street is driving towards the ocean where he plans to drown himself. But on the way he is hit by a van and he sails through the windscreen, his head sliced cleanly from his body. At his funeral days later, he sits up in his coffin, apparently resurrected. Alternately feted and feared as the Second Coming and the Anti-Christ, Theodore becomes an object of derision and morbid curiosity to the press, a prized specimen for scientists and Satan incarnate to an obscure religious cult deep in the desert.

One part of the book that I like is when Theodore Street get to know Oswald Avery and Jesus19. Avery was involved in creating clones of Jesus. The clones are not successful, as they are mostly disabled. Till the end, Avery realised that his clone Jesus19 was his best clone so far when Theodore asked him what does Jesus19 eat as he has no mouth. He realised that Jesus19 does not eat. I guess sometimes success is very near, but one does not realise it even if it stares right in one’s eyes.

Anyway, this book teaches me that if a person has died, it is best to leave it as it is and accept the death. Because Theodore come back alive after death despite his head has been sliced fully, he brought further pain and embarrassment to his wife and children. I like the ending of the book.

“I was dead, when my head was apart from me. I was dead. Death is not a bad thing and one ought to stay dead when death comes. If nothing else, I have learned this. I wish I had no mouth, so that my silence would mean as much as my words. I wish that my words had no meaning. I wish that you could all feel my death, so that you would cease fearing it. ” Ted looked at his wife and daughter and offered a silent apology. He then reached to his neck, undid a knot of his sutures and began to remove them.

Trailer of American Desert

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