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Review & Literary Road Trip: Hume’s Fork

August 18, 2009

Humes fork

Legare “Greazy” Hume and Saul Grossman are philosophy professors at Amworld University in St. Petersburg, FL.  Amworld University is owned by Amworld Enterprises, which is known for it’s theme park in Orlando, so it’s needless to say that it’s not a well respected school.  They’re heading to Charleston, SC for the American Philosophical Association conference.  Saul is excited because he’s anxious to experience the South.  Greazy, a native of Charleston, has explained to him repeatedly that “St. Pete and much of Florida, for that matter, were not the South.”

Since Greazy is trying to distance himself from his family, he doesn’t plan to visit them while they’re in Charleston, but when there’s a mix-up in their hotel reservations (there’s also a big professional wrestling tournament in town), he and Saul are forced to stay with them.  Much to Greazy’s surprise, Saul, an Orthodox Jew from New York, hits it off with Greazy’s Southern, redneck family.

Between the Philosopher’s convention, professional wrestling, and Greazy’s family, there’s a lot going on!

Since Hume’s Fork is written about a philosophy professor by Ron Cooper, who is a professor of philosophy,  each chapter starts with some philosophical musings.  Even the title is a philosophical reference – David Hume was an 18th century philosopher who made a distinction between two types of knowledge and that distinction has become known as Hume’s Fork.  Frankly, most of the philosophical references were over my head.  Those parts dragged for me, but once I got past them in each chapter, I thought the book was lots of fun – it was filled with a buddy road trip, an eccentric Southern family, professional wrestling, a great location and even some suspense.  Both Greazy and Saul were great characters and Ron Cooper got the South Carolina lowcountry accent perfect.

Ron CooperRon Cooper was born and raised in Moncks Corner, South Carolina.  He earned his BA at the College of Charleston and his MA at the University of South Carolina.  (He has a Ph. D. from Rutgers.)  His wife, Sandra, is from Gloverville, South Carolina.  Hume’s Fork is his first novel.

Since Ron Cooper is originally from South Carolina and almost all of this book is set in South Carolina, this is the second stop in my Literary Road Trip through South Carolina.  Review copy provided by Bancroft Press.

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18 Comments leave one →
  1. August 18, 2009 7:43 am

    Hume’s Fork sounds like a fun reading experience. You are sure off to a good start on your literary road trip. I’m enjoying the trip too.

  2. August 18, 2009 7:55 am

    Yup, I’m a bit afraid of Philosophy. The title does catch my eye, and I like your review.

  3. August 18, 2009 8:14 am

    From your review, it sounds like this is a book you need to skim the first parts of each chapter. Otherwise, it looks like fun! Good review!!!

  4. August 18, 2009 8:25 am

    I think it would be fun to read about the culture clash of Orthodox Jew with Southern redneck!

    Nice LRT entry.

  5. August 18, 2009 8:29 am

    Sounds like a fun book and great way to get to know the south. Great new Literary Road Trip stop.

  6. August 18, 2009 8:46 am

    Sounds like a really fun book!

  7. August 18, 2009 9:29 am

    Great review! I love this literary road trip idea!

  8. August 18, 2009 9:36 am

    Nice review. I think though philosophy is in the theme , it will make a fun read.

  9. stacybuckeye permalink
    August 18, 2009 11:58 am

    I bet most of the philosophy would go over my head too!

  10. August 18, 2009 12:57 pm

    I know I’ve said it before, but will say it again: I really need to visit the South. Just the name “The Lowcountry” sounds utterly exotic to me, and I am not kidding here. Wonderful review, although the wrestling-part sorta put me off the whole thing (the philosophy I can handle).

  11. August 18, 2009 1:30 pm

    What a fun road trip!

  12. August 18, 2009 10:00 pm

    Interesting book. I guess I wouldn’t understand the philosophical references either, but I like the sound of a road trip. =)

  13. justicejenniferreads permalink
    August 18, 2009 10:52 pm

    Sounds interesting. For a while, I was really interested in philosophy, but then it just kind of made my head hurt. Still I have read a little Hume here and there. This sounds like something I might want top pick up sometime.

  14. August 18, 2009 10:58 pm

    I like your road trip in South Carolina. Interesting book.

  15. August 19, 2009 7:43 am

    I probably wouldn’t have finished this one, philosophical musings tend to annoy me.

  16. August 19, 2009 12:14 pm

    Recently I have been reading more books bent towards philosophy, and they are giving me much to think about. I am interested in this book and think that it might be an enlightening read. Not to mention that the other elements of the plot sound compelling as well. Great review! I hadn’t seen this book anywhere else, so it’s cool that you reviewed it. Thanks!

  17. August 20, 2009 9:04 am

    Thanks for the review, Kathy–I’m honored to be featured on your terrific blog. If any of your readers here pick up Hume’s Fork, I’d love to hear from them. I hope they’ll also look for my next novel, Purple Jesus, also from Bancroft Press, next year.

  18. August 31, 2009 1:48 pm

    Sounds like an interesting book, but I’m sure the philosophy parts would go right over my head, too.

    –Anna

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