Tornado Alley (book)

Tornado Alley (book)

infobox Book |
name = Tornado Alley
title_orig =
translator =

image_caption = 1989 Cherry Valley Editions paperback edition.
author = William S. Burroughs
cover_artist =
country = United States
language = English
series =
genre = short stories, poetry
publisher = Cherry Valley Editions
release_date = 1989
media_type = Print (Paperback)
pages =
isbn = ISBN 0916156842
preceded_by =
followed_by =

"Tornado Alley" is a collection of short stories and one poem by Beat Generation author, William S. Burroughs, written during the later years of his career and first published in 1989. The first edition of the book included illustrations by S. Clay Wilson.

Notable pieces in the collection include the crime melodrama "Where He Was Going", which Burroughs said on his album "Dead City Radio" was inspired by the writings of Ernest Hemingway (the story title is taken from a famous quotation from Hemingway's "The Snows of Kilimanjaro"), and the poem "Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 28, 1986".

The collection is dedicated to 1930s gangster John Dillinger, "in hope that he is still alive."

Both "Where He Was Going" and "Thanksgiving Day" were performed by Burroughs on his 1990 spoken word/musical album, "Dead City Radio", with "Thanksgiving Day" also being performed by Burroughs in a music video to promote the CD. In both the CD and video versions of "Thanksgiving Day", which was retitled "A Thanksgiving Prayer", Burroughs appends the dedication to Dillinger.

The short film "Thanksgiving prayer" by Gus Van Sant is a reading of the poem "Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 28, 1986" from "Tornado Alley". It features a collage of black and white images intercut with Burroughs reading the poem.


The stories contained within "Tornado Alley" are:

* Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 28, 1986 (poem)
* Jerry and the Stockbroker
* To Talk for Joe the Dead
* Dead-End Reeking Street
* The FUs
* Book of Shadows
* Where He Was Going

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