You can now read 10 articles in a month for free on Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

The Boston Globe


Bookish | Matthew Gilbert

John Williams’s ‘Stoner’ finds a second life

“Stoner” is the Stuart Little of novels, a small, valiant fellow who has taken a long, eccentric, and triumphant journey through the big human world.

Written in 1965 by John Williams, “Stoner” — which, by the way, has absolutely nothing to do with weed or Pineapple Express — quickly fell into obscurity. About the son of a Missouri farming family who falls in love with literature and becomes a professor, the novel sold a measly 2,000 copies for Viking before going to that shelf in the sky where ignored books find eternal rest.

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week