Customer Reviews for

Fierce Invalids Home From Hot Climates

Average Rating 4.5
( 63 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 64 Customer Reviews
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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 20, 2013

    This was the first Robbins novel I'd read since Jitterbug Perfum

    This was the first Robbins novel I'd read since Jitterbug Perfume in 1985. I loved each of his first four novels, and JP seemed a kind of summary or clarification of the ideas presented in those first four, leading me to conclude that Robbins had said all he had to say.
    I still think that to a degree, yet Fierce Invalids offers something fresh in that it takes those same ideas, that same mystical/spiritual approach to the puzzle of human existence, and applies them to a world that has totally changed since JP and its predecessors. Although published 16 years after Jitterbug in 2000, Fierce Invalids takes place in the world we still inhabit in 2013 rather than the 60s-70s world of the first four novels.
    Seeing how Robbins' concerns play out in today's world was the most interesting aspect of this novel for me. It certainly seems more difficult today to see things from that spiritual/look-for-the-reality-behind-reality point of view. As a result, I would agree with a previous reviewer who says the writing style seems forced at points, and the polemical passages too often seem like set speeches instead of dialogue that arises naturally from the story.
    Despite these shortcomings. however, Fierce Invalids left me feeling like I'd reconnected with a part of myself I'd almost lost over the past 30 years, and I think the world in general is in that same state. There is a wisdom here that the 21st century needs, and if the execution seems rough in places it's only because Robbins is exploring how what the questers of the early novels learned can be applied in order to salvage something -- our humanity, perhaps? -- from the mess we have now. The light-dark dualism of Fierce Invalids is perfectly reflective of those today seeking to find common ground between what's called Right and Left to form a more sane world. I'm thinking of people like Julian Assange, Ron Paul, Dennis Kucinich, Edward Snowden, maybe even Pope Francis.
    Finally, besides being relevant and hilarious, I doubt anyone will ever come up with a better definition of ADHD than Robbins' "extrapolatory zigzag."

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2012

    Tom Robbins at his best

    This book is intoxicating, addicting, hilarious, thought provoking, and honest. I only wish that there was an entire series following Switters as I want to never stop reading this book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 15, 2010

    Women Love These Fierce Invalids Home from Hot Climates?

    This woman certainly does. "Fierce Invalids" provides an excellent psychogeographical and sexy journey. Robbins exhibits unique verbosity (as usual!), and continues to disarm his readers with its charm.
    Following CIA operative 'Switters' across the globe in his celebratory manner of performing assignments playfully tugs at the infinitely mysterious synchronicity of time, space, and hallucinogen.
    Finding himself on dual assignment in South America-one for the money, two for the show-he must eventually come to terms with entanglement in matters spiritual and bureaucratic; all the while, pining for unlawful carnal knowledge of his underage stepsister, 'Suzy'. Behooved to move forward, Switters must continue clandestine cooperation in the chaotic middle east, coincidentally colliding with a cloister of excommunicated nuns, prideful in the power of prayer. One 'Domino Thiry' captures his fierce gaze with her rare and matter-of-fact thoughtfulness, yet the reflection is relegated to the regarded.
    The opportunistic reader will revel in its gritty variety.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2005

    Rambo to the rescue

    Switters is a credit to his employers, his readers and his grandmother. Tom why can`t you be more prolific? One of those writers who churns out 100 books before retirement - or at least dies trying. My only consolation for your meagre (in numerical terms) output is at the fact that this one is perfect. I`ll settle for that.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 11, 2005

    Too much fun!

    Jitterbug may be TR's best book. But, no doubt, Switters his finest creation. Indiana Jones meets McMurphy from Cuckoo's Nest! As far as bad Bobby Case goes...no precedent exists. The ending may let down but the episode in the South American jungle - featuring the pomey anthropologist, the pyramid headed soothsayer and Switters in a hammock - perhaps the funniest ever put to paper. Don't buy this book if you are bent on discovering the Colonel's secret recipe. Otherwise...

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2003

    Definitely NOT for 'Right Wing Pigeons'

    I'm a HUGE Tom Robbins fan...this HAS to be the best I've read so far. My very open-minded 82 year old father borrowed this book...and LOVED IT!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 23, 2002

    Anarchy

    The novel is about Switters, an anarchist CIA operative who is caught up in a superstitious medley of confusion when he ventures deep into the jungle of South America to free his grandmother's easy-going parrot. The adventure continues to three other continents, following Switters as he finds trouble in every form imaginable. Robbins has outdone himself again, proving the best novels are those with endless supplies of political and religious maxims. Not since Fight Club has humor and philosophy combined to produce such a bold work of literature. Robbins is an intelligent scoundrel who crafts each sentence to fit his beautiful creation: Fierce Invalids Home From Hot Climates.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 26, 2004

    think

    this is probably the best book for anyone who loves the contradictive nature of mankind and the usless knowledge possesed by all.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 31, 2004

    The Popes a killer......

    Jitterbug was his best book, this is his greatest story. What a tale and in turn what a bashing he deals christianity. Bless you Tom Robbins, we can learn to live and love now.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 21, 2002

    Definitely not for the Christian Right

    A novel that speaks to the open minded. I love the main character's insights and rants. This book is full of personalities which break all the norms and suck the marrow out of life while doing all things enjoyable. Hey, Jerry Faldwell, everybody knows preying on a young female cousin is wrong. Lighten up it's a character stupid. Carpe Diem. Long live Switters.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 14, 2002

    GREAT!

    I am only a college student, but this is probably the best book that I have ever read. Tom Robbins is a funny guy with a lot of talent, and this book is down right hilarious! I mean 'forget the finals' good!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 17, 2001

    finnegan's cake

    great book, can't say it enough. just sent it to my friend for christmas, he don't know what's gonna hit em. better than skinny legs and all, better than jitterbug perfume. if it were a movie, phillip seymore hoffman should play switters!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2001

    Page after page. . .

    I believe this may be the first book I've read that I would describe as a 'page-turner.' I had a terribly difficult time putting the book down for any reason while I was reading it and having just finished it, I am seriously considering starting to read it again as soon as I finish this review. The story was one of the most inventive I've encountered and I enjoyed Robbins's language greatly. The only flaw I find in the book is that some of the dialogue strikes me as contrived, but I was willing to accept it as part of the overall effect. I admire the story and characters for the blend of profundity and humor which is the embodiment of Switters (the main character) and what I perceived to be the book's Leitmotif.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2001

    Holy Hymen Hotel

    This was the first Tom Robbins novel I have read. I enjoyed his gritty tale and use of erotic, out of the way, discriptions. The characters were engaging and the story was to say the least ....'unique' (I chose earings.... sue me) My biggest problem with the book was it seemed that the author was a little too busy concentrating on his political commentary at times. He used the story as a vehicle for pulpiting all he wanted to say, but was a little carried away at points. Occasionally I felt as if he could have let the reader read between the lines a bit instead of going ape on his tyrades. Just the same, the story got me through it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 19, 2001

    Bitingly sarcastic, hilariously modern

    I have enjoyed all the Tom Robbins novels, this one is no exception. His ability to sum up the cultural climate of the time and weave it into an amazing tale is beautiful. I love his use of language, symbols, and colorful characters with few boundaries. I would recommend this novel to anyone wanting to expand their literary horizons, and I will definitely try Finnegans Wake yet again..

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 7, 2001

    Disappointed in the ending.

    I've been a Robbins fan since 'Another Roadside Attraction' although I didn't read his last two books (busy raising children). I was absolutely delighted to pick up 'Fierce Invalids' and find that Robbins is still as stimulating as ever. As I read, I felt almost like I was rediscovering an old friend. Who else has this imagination? And his use of the language produces a feeling within me that nears euphoria. He's an incredible writer. While I enjoyed watching Switters develop throughout the story, I felt that in the end he hadn't changed a bit. And that was disappointing. In previous Robbins books, I was disappointed because the books ended. But this time I felt differently. I felt somewhat betrayed by my favorite author. However, my pleasure in reading the book (until the last few pages) was so immense that I still give it 4 stars!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2001

    I am Jack's Soft and Sensitive Side

    I've read, and loved, all of Robbin's books, and this is the best. No one writes or tells a story like him. Every twist and turn in this journey kept me turning the pages never failing to amaze me.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 17, 2001

    What Happened to Our Prophet in Hot Climates

    Perhaps I've gotten too old or read so much Robbins that I know what he has to say before he says it, but FIHHC left me disappointed. Oh, the writing is still wonderful and Robbins is still the master of the simile and metaphor, but now when the comparisons come they seem to have a little sign posted next to them: 'Robbins Simile-Examine and Laugh'; rather then just slipping in under the radar so that you laugh without noticing that a figure of speech was used. And the story is still ribald and picaresque and full of enough drugged enlightenment to allow an accountant to escape to Katmandu. But the polemics get out of hand. I want Robbins to show me how we've become the slaves of commercial interests by telling me a wonderful giggly story and letting me draw the inference. I don't want him to lecture at me. If you're a Robbins completionist you must read this. But if not, go back to 'Even Cowgirls Get the Blues' or 'Jitterbug Perfume' or indeed any of his other books. On behalf of Robbins completionists, snap out of it, Tom!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 5, 2000

    Fierce Invalids Home from Hot Climates

    wahoo is the meaning of life. our sailboat will carry this name next month in Switter's honor. he is our hero and we want to adventure through life the way he does.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 2, 2000

    Fierce Invalids Home from Hot Climates

    This book takes one to many cities and cultures. Totally absorbing and great to read to someone who is driving long distance. We named our sailboat 'Yahoo!' in honor of Switters in hopes others will know what it means. Yahoo is life!

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