The Fool's Progress
is a book by Edward Abbey
, published in 1988.
It is the saga of a journey - a journey through space, a journey
through the hero's personal history, and a quest to find meaning
under the shadow of death. The journey starts as Henry Holyoak
Lightcap blasts away at his refrigerator with a .357 magnum
, then takes off with his dying dog, Solstice.
leaves the wasteland of Tucson, Arizona, making his
way to his (fictional) home town of Stump Creek, West
The narrative of the book varies, with the story alternating
between Lightcap's present journey home and flashback memories. The
flashbacks progress from his childhood up through his recent past.
In a sense, the book could be seen as two separate stories, tied
together by the single character.
This is a book that Abbey had worked on since the 1950's,
originally titled Adventures of the Barbarian
. Many of
those close to Abbey felt that the book was at its heart
autobiography projected through the lens of fiction. It was the
last of his works to be published during his lifetime, and was in
many ways his magnum
- The Fool's Progress (ISBN 0-8050-0921-3)