Friday, May 30, 2014


Mirthful, manic those words accurately describe a book subtitled "A True Account Of An Imaginative Life" by one of America's most quirky, irreverent storytellers. Of course, Robbins is quick to deny that it is a memoir although it reads very much like one - beginning with selling his new sunsuit for a nickel so he could buy an orange Popsicle which he happily licked while strolling home au natural. Then after a hapless attempt to rob the local bank armed with a cap pistol he's off to college where he wrote for the school paper which was edited by Tom Wolfe (yes, the Tom Wolfe).

At times one is tempted to wonder if life holds all these surprises for Robbins or Robbins simply enjoys surprising life. Whatever the case Tibetan Peach Pie is a delightful read as we follow his journey from Depression era Appalachia to the West Coast to Timbuktu and the offices of New York Publishing,

Each of the vignettes that Robbins relates is often accompanied by digression - but who minds a bit of digressing from this completely individual fellow? His mother called him Tommy Rotten - we'd call him fascinating, intriguing, shocking and laugh-out-loud funny.

- Gail Cooke

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