Adios, Nirvana

Adios, Nirvana by Conrad Wesselhoeft

Telly has left a trail of devastation in the wake of his death. That trail is apparently ten times worse for his twin brother than it is for most. Jonathan not only lost his twin, his thickest thick, but he lost a part of himself. And since that moment Jonathan’s world has come to a complete halt, leaving him in a dire state permanent grieving. Former prize student and award-winning poet, Jonathan is nothing more than skin and bones, a walking zombie fueled by NoDoz chased by Red Bull, and moonlit jam sessions with guitar goddess Ruby. Life is nothing but sweet taurine, and even sweeter Ruby.

Straddling the line between the living and the dead, Jonathan knows his thicks are right when they say that he has to accept Telly’s death, move on, and start living once again. He doesn’t know if or how he could do that, until he meets David Cosgrove II. David Cosgrove, journalist and war-time hero, has enlisted the help of Jonathan to write his memoir. Reluctantly Jonathan agrees, mostly because it gives him a free get out of jail free card.

But the more time he spends with David, and the more time he spends at the Delphi, playing for Agnes, fantasizing about Katie in her Beyonce-esque wig, the more life seems to make sense, the more he begins to see and understand his place in the world, or at least this world. And thanks to David Cosgrove II, the man who not only trusted and befriended him, but the man who taught him how to face fears, his own personal demons, and live a full life as best as he knows how – without Telly.

Fused with guitar riffs and raw emotion Conrad Wesselhoeft has created a story that is relatable, honest, and as realistic as realistic fiction could get. Set in grunge drive Seattle, Adios, Nirvana is a book that will fit any music taste. With mentions of famed Nirvana and Pearl Jam, Wesselhoeft does a great job at writing a music driven plot that isn’t solely focused on music.

The writing is strong, and feels as if a longtime friend is simply reminiscing his life story. Full of memorable quotes, Adios, Nirvana will strike a chord with anyone. It’s both funny with laugh out loud moments – when Agnes first tells Jonathan to “float a turd” – and somber moments that make us consider our own thoughts, lives, and fears.

“Respected by all. Not with trumpets and bows, but with straightened posture, a universal twitching awareness of our mortality. Everybody’s wondering, how can I arrange the daisies and dandelions of my life into a better bouquet? The answer is, you can’t. Life is random. Life is absurd. Life is deadly. The bouquet arranges itself. And it doesn’t always bloom or smell good.”

Adios, Nirvana…

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