- Paperback: 448 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Classics; New Ed edition (29 July 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 014118762X
- ISBN-13: 978-0141187624
- Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.9 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 188,371 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Monkey Wrench Gang (Penguin Modern Classics) Paperback – 29 Jul 2004
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More About the Author
About the Author
Edward Abbey was born in Pennsylvania in 1927 and spent most of his life in the American southwest. His books include the celebrated Desert Solitaire, which established Abbey as one of the country's foremost defenders of the environment. Edward Abbey died in 1989.
Inside This Book(Learn More)
Dr. Sarvis with his bald mottled dome and savage visage, grim and noble as Sibelius, was out night riding on a routine neighborhood beautification project, burning billboards along the highway-U.S. 66, later to be devoured by the superstate's interstate autobahn. Read the first page Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Top Customer Reviews
Abbey writes a cinematic epic charged with humour,passion and love.
The love of wilderness and the loathing of capitalist 'progress' which sees the great canyons and deserts of the American South West raped in the name of commerce.
Abbey's hostility towards the corporate/government sponsored eco vandals and his direct action response articulated in the pages of TMWG, inspired those who shared his vision to create a powerful environmental group 'Earth First'.
Now... How many books can claim to have started a green revolution !
Although written in 1975 it doesn't seem dated, in fact far from it as Abbey's attitude to environmental concerns isn't very PC and so refreshing from that point of view. He is able to describe the feelings of the desert with a rare clarity and mix that with the horrors of industrial exploitation of the landscape.
It may have an environmental theme, but the main thrust of the story is a high octane adventure, made appealing because the protagonists are such an odd ball collection of characters.
Telling the tale of an odd-ball quartet of radical environmentalists (monkey-wrenchers, so-called because they stick a literal and metaphorical monkey-wrench into the machinery of environmental degradation) as they look for ever more effective and devastating ways of preventing the rape of the American wilderness.
Accusations of racism and sexism would not be completely unfounded but Abbey was exploring new political terrain...
Four well-meaning but equally troubled misfits from society, ageing surgeon Doc Sarvis, his much younger tent-dwelling girlfriend Bonnie Abbzug, outdoorsman and bigamist "Seldom Seen" Smith and crazy as a mud-bug US army veteran George Hayduke, stumble through the Arizona wilderness causing mayhem and destroying the monsters of industry that are ruining their much-loved land.
There's plenty of dynamiting and smashing, burning and crushing, and Abbey delights in the technical details of how to effectivly vandalise any number of large structures and machinery. There are night time escapades a-plenty and tense flights from the clutches of law enforcement.
The other side of this boys-own tale though, is a sensitive peaan to the beauty of nature and the lost wilds of the authentic Old West. Abbey knows his pinyon pines from his cottonwoods and the descriptions are often deeply touching and evocative. It is a human story too, describing the blossoming of love and friendships amongst these tough old whack-jobs.
Read it then go out and plant a tree and tear down a billboard.
I was not sure whether all the places mentioned are real, and failed to find them on Google Maps. A map would have helped greatly.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The true story of 'Urban guerrillas' seeking to bring Luddism to rural America,
'A good read'.
A Modern classic, still waiting for the Film, hope they cast it properly, and not the usual Hollywood "Stars".Published 3 months ago by kenneth smith
Though written many years ago this is still a hugely relevant book . Oh and great fun too .Published 8 months ago by Alan Cunningham
this was a tip from Robert Macfarlane in his earlier days as a Guardian Review regular. thanks Robert. Read morePublished 17 months ago by david jarman
i was given this book by a friend whilst i traveled california. Great book. fantastic eco story a reminder our generation were no the first to worry about the environment.Published 21 months ago by Paul woollard
Bought this for my Uncle's birthday pressie and he was very pleased. For anyone interested in Environmental issues it seems to be a must read.Published on 28 Jan. 2014 by Miss Emily-Rose Ascott