If you were to judge a book by its title then this book may not be for everyone, but it wasn’t the title that caught my eye. It was the author that did, Tom Robbins may not be everyone’s cup of tea , but he is most certainly one of my favorite types of tea! Tom Robbins is an author who is known for writing bizarre, quirky, strange, yet funny novels about original situations or some things that we experience on a daily basis. It was his novel, Even Cowgirls get the Blues that changed my world when it came to reading fiction; the story is about a lesbian cowgirl with enlarged thumbs who hitchhiked around American, very odd indeed but very funny. His novels go beyond the boundaries of normal fiction but allow the reader to experience something strange and exciting. B for Beer is an excellent example of his strange fiction at work come to life before my very eyes.
The novel is about a young girl named Gracie, who learns about beer from the adults around her. Her life seems to change with the effects that beer has with her parents, her relationship with them and especially her relationship with her Uncle Moe. It is when Gracie herself becomes drunk off beer for the first time and meets the Beer Fairy. It is this fairy that allows Gracie to learn from her experience. The novel focuses on we as a society look at beer and what kind of relationship we have with it.
I have to admit that this book actually taught me something, first it taught me how beer was made. The Beer Fairy goes through the long, detailed process to learning to making your own brew. Even though I was uninspired to make my own beer, I did appreciate the time and effort that goes into making the perfect pint of lager. It wasn’t just the process but there was a bit of philosophy mixed in with beer. It is the idea that beer will eventually reflect the person we truly are, which comes out more with the amount of beer we drink. I am sure we have all met this Beer Fairy once in our lives, maybe we were unlucky enough to meet her on more than one occasion, but we all have to admit that we have learned something from her. Each of her lessons are different from the other but we all eventually learn the lesson she is teaching, even if we don’t get it the first time around. The book was a funny, short story that made me giggle and appreciate the beverage that was my closest friend during my college years. If you have never read Tom Robbins then I would recommend this book to ease your way into his obscure world of fiction. As I said earlier, he isn’t for anyone but for those willing to take a chance and want to get out of the fictional norm then reading Tom Robbins will open your eyes to the strange and wonder that is fiction.