Cain’s Book has ratings and 33 reviews. MJ said: Trocchi’s final and most fêted work (apart from the odds-and-ends poetry shambles, Man at Leisure, a. So begins Cain’s Book, Alexander Trocchi’s incredible novel of existential dread. Young Adam, its predecessor, is better known, but the latter is. Written in America while Trocchi was working on a scow on the Hudson River, Cain’s Book is an extraordinary autobiographical account about a junky’s life, and .

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It is now just after five in the afternoon. Today at this time it is still afternoon, and the sun, striking the cinderblocks of the main building of the works has turned them pink.

The junky genius of Alexander Trocchi

The motor cranes and the decks of the other scows tied up round about are deserted. So begins Cain’s Book, Alexander Trocchi ‘s incredible novel grocchi existential dread. Young Adam, its predecessor, is better known, but the latter is the “Scottish Beat’s” classic.

But Cain’s Book actually takes the reader one step further into the philosophical world of existential angst than any of them.


Cain’s Book by Alexander Trocchi

It positively drowns us in a word of unremitting absurdity and meaninglessness. It is a book almost entirely devoid of plot: Nechhi occasionally details trips into the city to score heroin, recollects his childhood in Glasgow, or talks of his attempts to write a book.

What is incredible about the book is its unrelenting bleakness, and the sheer poetic caib of Trocchi’s writing.

This is his poetic project and it’s also the way his whole perception system works at its most basic level the two are the same. In real life, Trocchi seemed very glad to cut himself off from his peers, saying that his only concerns as a writer were “sodomy and lesbianism”, that those were the only interesting subjects in the previous 20 years of Scottish writing and that xain have written it all.

Sadly, Cain’s Book cakn his last.

Cain’s Book: Alexander Trocchi: Calder Publications

As the 60s gave way to the 70s, Trocchi’s addiction to heroin took its toll and his talent lay pretty much squandered. The stories of his wild and tragic life are infamous and extensively documented in many of the leading “swinging 60s” biographies Marianne Faithfull ‘s account of doing drugs with Trocchi is one of the best.


Despite his addictions, and his sad death at the age of 59, Trocchi left us some of the bleakest, most beautiful writing to come out of the 60s. In Cain’s Trocchi the writing is all – the words ebb and flow like the inky blackness of the Hudson River.

Trocchi’s descriptive powers are mesmerising: His other books includes some interesting pseudonymous pornography for the Olympia Press. Young Adam, of course, was turned into a successful film starring Ewan McGregor, and helped to raise the author’s public perception a little.

But it’s Cain’s book that best fulfils Trocchi’s hopes for ” the invisible insurrection of a thousand minds “. Half an hour ago I gave myself a fix. Topics Books Books blog.

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