Bowl of Cherries

  • Author Millard Kaufman
  • Narrator Bronson Pinchot
  • Publisher Blackstone Publishing
  • Run Time 11 hours and 2 minutes
  • Format Audio
  • Genre Fiction: general and literary.

Listen to a sample

What to expect

Kicked out of Yale at age fourteen, the precocious Judd Breslau takes a questionable job from the eccentric Phillips Chatterton, a bathrobe-wearing Egyptologist working out of a dilapidated home laboratory. There, Judd falls for young Valerie Chatterton, who quickly leads Breslau away from his research and into, in order: the attic, a Colorado equestrian ranch, a porn studio beneath the Brooklyn Bridge, and a jail cell in southern Iraq, where we find him awaiting his own execution while the war rages on in the north.

Written by a ninety-year-old debut novelist, ex-Marine, two-time Oscar nominee, and co-creator of Mr. Magoo, Bowl of Cherries rivals the liveliest comic novels for sheer gleeful inventiveness. This is a book of astounding breadth and sharp consequence, containing all the joy, derangement, terror, and doubt of adolescence and modern times.

Critics Review

  • “[A] smart, zany comedy…irresistible…Kaufman’s comic imagination, his ability to mix things scatological and historical, political and philosophical, reminds one of those young’uns Kurt Vonnegut and Joseph Heller…But Kaufman seems to have more heart than those ’60s satirists; his precocious young hero pulls on our sympathies even as he trudges on through absurdity.”

    Washington Post Book World
  • “[An] irresistible comic novel, a bawdy, original coming-of-age tale. Kaufman’s screwball sensibility, relish for language, gleeful vulgarism and deep sympathy for his characters make this novel an unprecedented joyride…Kaufman’s book is shot through with worldly wit and a keen sense of the humor in human foibles.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)
  • “The ninety year old’s inquisitiveness and tenacity shine brightly within the novel, in which he weaves words more impressively than a spider spins a web…Kaufman’s writing summons the ghosts of Vladimir Nabokov and Franz Kafka.”

    Rocky Mountain Chronicle
  • “[Kaufman] packs a lifetime of experience and wisdom into this story…Kaufman’s delight in thrusting Judd from one antic scenario to another is contagious. The audio production is excellent, and Bronson Pinchot carries the story’s many twists and turns with aplomb; his voice is deep, and listening is a pleasure. The story’s globe-trotting transitions well to listening, and listeners will appreciate the narration’s clear use of just-different-enough voices for different characters.”

  • “Reminiscent of Christopher Moore’s fantastic fiction, this work includes quite a cast of quirky characters and unbelievable sequences of strange events that keep the story intriguing and perhaps also illustrates the turbulence of growing up.”

    Library Journal

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