It used to be Cliff and Vivian and now it isn t. With these words, Jim Harrison begins a riotous, moving novel that sends a sixty-something man, divorced and robbed of his farm by a late-blooming real estate shark of an ex-wife, on a road trip across America. Cliff is armed with a childhood puzzle of the United States and a mission to rename all the states and state birds, the latter of which have been unjustly saddled with white men s banal monikers up until now. His adventures take him through a whirlwind affair with a former student from his high-school-teacher days twenty-some years before, to a snake farm in Arizona owned by an old classmate, and to the high-octane existence of his son, a big-time movie producer who has just bought an apartment over the Presidio in San Francisco. Now in paperback, Jim Harrison s riotous and moving cross-country novel, "The English Major," is the map of a man s journey into, and out of, himself. It is vintage Harrisonreflective, big-picture American, and replete with wicked wit."
The English Major