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East Texas in the 1960s is not the worst place to have grown up, but for narrator Jake of The Jugheads, it was a minefield. Describing clearly and courageously first jobs and first kisses, family vacations and family fights, Jake takes us through a wild ride of a coming of age, in an ordinary American family that he believes is as violent and dysfunctional as they come. By turns hilarious and moving, The Jugheads is a compelling return to form for a master of the underside of the American psyche.
About the Author
J. R. HELTON's first novel Drugs, a modern homage to William S. Burrough’s classic Junky, introduced the world to his wry writing and unique genre of fictionalized memoir. A professor of writing at the collegiate level, Helton has also published two memoirs and a number of short stories—for one of which he won an Honorable Mention Pushcart Prize—and poems in such literary magazines as The Sun, The MissouriReview, and Mineshaft. He lives, writes, and teaches in Texas.
“J. R. Helton really speaks to me--starkly honest, darkly funny, acutely observant, and captures the tragic absurdity of human life. ... [H]e’s right up there with the best of them.” —Robert Crumb, cartoonist and musician
“This guy Helton could be the next Bukowski.” —Terry Zwigoff, director of Crumb and Ghost World
“If Mark Twain had snorted coke, chomped on painkillers like they were Tic Tacs and huffed enough nitrous to keep a fleet of dental surgery patients grinning, Drugs is the book he’d have written.” —Tony O’Neill, author of Digging the Vein and Sick City