Synopses & Reviews
Buckley takes the reader back to his childhood in Montecito, just outside of Santa Barbara, during the 1950s and 1960s. These eighteen essays are a chronicle of the rapid cultural and physical changes that coincided with his coming of age in California as a member of the baby boom generation. "I know it's simplistic," writes Buckley, "but nine out of ten days all I want to do is drive an old Chevy again, lean back against the wide bench seat, switch the AM radio on to a game, shift that 3-speed on the column, and cruise with the windows down." What Buckley calls the "fire at the edge of things" the blindingly rapid changes during his lifetime in society, politics, and technology glows brightly throughout the eighteen narratives in the book. Discussion of these issues takes place in the context of people's lives either Buckley's or those of his friends rather than in abstract terms.Cruising Stateis deeply personal, yet universal in appeal."