Ask the Dust
Ask the Dust
HarperCollins Publishers, Paperback, 9780060822552, 165pp.
Publication Date: February 2006
Ask the Dust is a virtuoso performance by an influential master of the twentieth-century American novel. It is the story of Arturo Bandini, a young writer in 1930s Los Angeles who falls hard for the elusive, mocking, unstable Camilla Lopez, a Mexican waitress. Struggling to survive, he perseveres until, at last, his first novel is published. But the bright light of success is extinguished when Camilla has a nervous breakdown and disappears . . . and Bandini forever rejects the writer's life he fought so hard to attain.
Charles Bukowski (1920-1994) was a German-born American poet, novelist, and short story writer. His writing was influenced by the social, cultural, and economic ambiance of his home city of Los Angeles. He published his first story at twenty-four and began writing poetry at thirty-five, publishing extensively in small literary magazines and small presses from the early 1940s through the early '90s. The "King of the Underground," he remained loyal to those small press editors who had first championed his work. During his life he wrote thousands of poems, hundreds of short stories, and six novels, publishing over sixty books.