What is a rock novel? The simplest way to go about answering this question is to turn to novels that feature rock musicians as protagonists (like Don DeLillo's Great Jones Street), or that are accompanied by rock soundtracks (like Thomas Pynchon's The Crying of Lot 49), or that engage the form in other, similarly explicit manners. The more challenging way is the one that Florence Dore has chosen in Novel Sounds, her study of Southern fiction in the years of rock's advent. For Dore, rock is not simply a music: it's also a sensibility, one that has a great deal to do with sounds and rhythms and lyrics...

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