When anthropology graduate student Blackwell James returns from a research expedition in the Amazon, he brings home a trunk full of rare hallucinogenic vines…but no research notes. Frustrated by the young man’s lack of progress on his dissertation, Blackwell’s professor finds him a job working on a primate experiment in Los Angeles to spur him along. Trouble is, Blackwell has never set foot in L.A., and he doesn’t know a whit about primates. In fact, for a guy like Blackwell James, venturing into the City of Angels soon proves to be more dangerous than the Amazon ever was. From the moment he is thrust into the bizarre culture of Hollywood, his life becomes a wild, high-octane tale of adventure, suspense, and intrigue. Caught up in the secret ambitions of his new employers, Blackwell begins a strange trip through the surreal world of movie stars, murder, and money. A secret society, a ghost town, two large chimpanzees, and several shamanistic drug-induced journeys round out this outrageous novel, which features “cameos” by Sylvester Stallone, Johnny Depp, and Steven Spielberg. Gleefully continuing the great literary tradition of comic Hollywood novels, The Graduate Student is an exuberant and riveting ride.
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