Mixed Plate
Book Report: Cosmic Banditos (off-topic)

Cosmic Banditos
by Allan C. Weisbecker

When I first tried to read "Cosmic Banditos" a year ago, I have to admit that I got more than a little perplexed with the characters and plot. The reason was that I had just read the authorís newer book, "In Search of Captain Zero," and found the two books similar to the point of confusion.

So I shelved the book for a year, allowing my short-term memory to fade. I'm so glad I picked the book up again. "Banditos" was a full-on trip to read. It can't even begin to peg or categorize it into any particular genre--it's just a very unique and funny book.

"Cosmic Banditos" follows the outrageous exploits of South American drug-runners. It skillfully and amazingly weaves this outlaw backdrop into quantum mechanics science and the human experience, as our "heroes" skip from one incredible situation to another.

Weisbecker mentioned that although this book was not a marketing success on its initial run, it gained a strong underground following and became a philosophical guide to some. After reading the book, I can understand why.

There is only a single reference about surfing, with a Jose the bandito becoming a bodysurfing idol while riding the Wedge. Silly stuff, but on par with the rest of the novel.

Those somewhat familiar with quantum physics might have an edge on internalizing some of the parallels. But even if you just enjoy philosophy or the folly of humankind, you'll probably love this book too. I for one literally laughed out loud, especially towards the ending. It is definitely one of the best books I've ever read (Weisbecker's "Captain Zero" probably being the best).

A movie based on the book is in the works starring John Cusack. Hope they don't rewrite it like Hollywood oftentimes does, because the book is a riot. Read it first; don't wait for the movie.


Amazon.com reviews
Allan Weisbecker's website
Net Banditos (unofficial Cosmic Banditos website)