Fresh Face Friday: Hippie Drum by Jnana Hodson

WaHoo!!  Friday is finally here.  You know that with Friday comes my review of a spotlighted author and book.  This week I am featuring Jnana Hodson and his book Hippie Drum.  This is a fictional account of a man attempting to find himself in varying circles and find the love of his life.  Be sure to check out the rest of my review after the book blurb.  I hope all of you out there have a wonderful weekend and get a chance to enjoy it anyway possible.

Book Blurb: (Courtesy of Goodreads)

18114937Long hair, marijuana, and draft resistance aren’t the only ways to identify a hippie. As DL learns when he accepts Nita’s invitation to lodge in a ramshackle farm shared by a dozen other free spirits, the Revolution of Peace and Love is a testing ground for youthful dreaming and promise. It runs, especially, through ongoing introductions and friendships.

Book Review:

Jnana Hodson’s Hippie Drum is an eclectic view on the hippie culture of the sixties.  This journey into being a hippie is taken by D.L.  D.L begins his journey after taking a job as a newspaper photographer and soon things fall into place when he gets set up on a farm recommended by his ex-girlfriend’s ex-roommate.  He meets a varied assortment of people those who range like him who have a job but still straddle the line into being a hippie, there are also people who get by as barters and finally those who you just didn’t know how they were getting by.  These three categories of people tend to surface and re-surface throughout the book.  You even see these people in the women that D.L attempts to have relationships.  As D.L pursues finding a soul mate along with finding himself you continue to root for him to find what he needs to be happy whether that is just his photography, his chanting or the arms of a loving woman.

This was a difficult book for me.  I was intrigued when I agreed to review it.  I am a big history buff and have even been to Haight Ashbury in San Francisco, but this book had me thinking I had ADD.  It was really difficult to focus on the characters.  Some would pop in and out so infrequently you didn’t even know if you’d heard of them.  Also, the story line was difficult to follow.  It took almost three-quarters of the book for me to realize what D.L was really looking for.  This book is written very much like stream of consciousness.  There were times that the sentence before and the current sentence didn’t make any sense together.  I truly got the counter-culture vibe but I really didn’t get that D.L was a true hippie in the sense that most people understand.  Overall, it wasn’t a bad book, but it was difficult to read and had difficulty holding my attention with all the diversions.

Author Bio: (Courtesy of

october-2010-download-223I am a Quaker, poet, and novelist who lives in a former seaport in New England. These entries reflect the journey that led here and the news of what’s emerging from my workbench and loft.

Born and raised in the Midwest, my career as a daily newspaper editor based me in Ohio, Indiana, upstate New York, Washington state, Iowa, Maryland, and finally New England – all while writing poetry and fiction in my free hours.

The name Jnana – a Sanskrit term for the spiritual path of intellect or discernment – was bestowed in 1972 to affirm my unique inner nature during a year-and-a-half residency of intense yoga study and practice in the Pocono mountains of Pennsylvania. In America, it is typically pronounced jah-na, sliding over the first n. In its fullest form, the name expanded by increments to Jnana-Devanandashram.

Over the ensuing relocations, my religious practice led me ever more deeply into the Society of Friends (Quaker), which, to my surprise, was the faith of my Hodson/Hodgin/Hodgson ancestors. I am now an active member of Dover Monthly Meeting in New Hampshire.

My published novels include Hippie Drum, Ashram, and Subway Hitchhikers in addition to several poetry chapbooks. More than a thousand of my poems, stories, and essays have appeared in journals on five continents.


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