Bookshelf: “No Alternative” by William Dickerson


Summer is the perfect time to set aside to get into a new book. In lieu of creating a “fashion grunge” summer book club, I think there just may be more book reviews in the future on the site. Just turning 30 this year has really made me think about the last 15 years of my life. Adolescence is such an important part in our development, something that I have just begun to realize since having this blog.

77-kurts-benchKurt’s Bench

One of the most memorable cultural markers in my childhood has to be the day that Kurt Cobain passed away. This also serves as the beginning point for William Dickerson’s “No Alternative” novel.  We follow the story of  Thomas Harrison, a miscreant youth on verge of developing his identity. All with the soundtrack of alternative rock.  Just months after Cobain’s death Thomas begins to examine the world around him through a depressively cultural eye. Dickerson’s writing reads almost like excerpts from my own diaries growing up. A real voice and page-turner nonetheless. Coming from a conventional late 20th century family with a hip-hop music obsessed sister, a father who’s a judge, and a mother who can only be described as typical coming from a suburb of New York.

It becomes increasingly clear that this is the generation that alternative rock was made for. Spilling over from the grunge generation, the youth needs to keep thriving and creating. Thomas, a drummer rallies his friends together to form his own alternative rock band. Importantly noting that they play only around “four chords”. Much like the start of many bands in the past 50 years. A story like this I would love to see in an indie film sometime soon.

This is definitely the book you should be reading this summer. I already plan to pass it along to some friends…

Buy “No Alternative” in paperback on Amazon or the e-book as well!

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