Shampoo Planet

Douglas Coupland, Author Atria Books $20 (304p) ISBN 978-0-671-75505-8
Just a year after the cult success of his Generation X , with its tales of 20-somethings, Coupland takes on the vid-kids one dance-step younger. With hair-care perfection and spot-on irony, Tyler Johnson, this book's narrator, emerges from his hippie mom's two divorces and his hometown circle of friends to wander Europe (``I'm overdosing on history here''). But once he's safely back home and with his steady girfriend Anna-Louise, his Euro-fling babe Stephanie shows up and unleashes a wanderlust he thought he'd filed away. Tyler, whose entrepreneurial goals are tidy as his hair, finds himself on the road, seeing the motor lodge vistas of his own land (``Convenience stores--the economic engine of the New Order''), and finally landing in his ``personal Dark Ages'' at a ``McJob'' on the wing computer at an L.A. WingWorld. In the final pages, as this post-Cold War Kerouac comes of age, Coupland returns to his book's road-novel roots, and finds there a rich and surprising love story. Coupland can dazzle through the cultural info-nonsense with channel-clicking speed, and here he has again captured the brood that grew up on cable and eco-disaster. His young central characters are cynically at ease with the apocalypse in a way that is brave and addictive. This funny, sympathetic and offhandedly brilliant book should become the program guide for Club MTV. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 08/31/1992
Release date: 09/01/1992
Genre: Fiction
Hardcover - 978-0-517-15473-1
Paperback - 282 pages - 978-0-7432-3153-4
Paperback - 312 pages - 978-0-671-75506-5
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