Wild Blue Yonder: A Novel of the 1960s

Wild Blue Yonder is the coming-of-age story of Nathaniel Hawthorne Flowers, a smart but sheltered boy from suburban Chicago whose beloved father suddenly dies, resulting in his flunking out of college. Nate receives a draft notice from the Army but after some “encouragement” from his mother, decides to enlist in the Air Force instead. It is 1965. Nate is 20 years old. Airman Flowers goes not to Vietnam but Germany, straight into a military Catch-22. His assignment: writing stories as a reporter for the Stars and Stripes newspaper which will never see print. Nate's adventure deepens as he and his fellow troops try to understand why they're there, the military mindset, and the massive social turbulence of 1960s America. Existential, psychedelic, funny, and laced with rock 'n' roll, Wild Blue Yonder is the story of Nate's quest for personal and spiritual values while discovering the meaning of family, friendship, and the love of the girl he left behind. "I could not put this novel down, and I did not want the journey to end. This is a well-written, engaging, very funny, thoughtful and bold first novel for this author.” - Rita Peterson “A coming-of-age story set in the 1960's, Wild Blue Yonder offers what finding yourself really means set against the turmoil of a time, place, and culture so different and similar to today. I heartily recommend this book!” - Casie “Overall, a great read, highly recommended.” - Michael Fedison
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Wild Blue Yonder: A Novel of the 1960s

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May 24, 2015


Nathaniel “How could I know” Flowers arrives at his new duty assignment, Kleinelachen Air Base, Germany, and immediately gets himself in a heap of trouble with his new first shirt. He follows that by going on a three-day bender with his new barracks mate Dylan. He awakens, profoundly hung over, to his folie a trois: standing in front of the squadron commanding officer, AWOL. How can this be? Clearly, Nate has violated his recently learned lesson, taught by Bob Dylan, not to make the same mistake more than once. But Nate, while creative enough to reconfigure his mistakes to some extent, remains a major screw-up. The difference here, on this tiny American air base near Stuttgart, appears to be that–at least so far–everyone he’s met is a wacko. Why does Dylan call the squadron office “The Dungeon?” Why was Nate sleeping with an empty Heineken bottle in his pocket? And how did that fancy chronograph end up on his wrist?

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