Illinois Authors

The Illinois Center for the Book banner

Joe Bonomo

Born: Wheaton, Maryland
Pen Name: None

Connection to Illinois: Bonomo resides in DeKalb, Illinois and has been an English professor at Northern Illinois University since 1995.

Biography: Joe Bonomo is a poet, essayist and rock and roll writer. He was born and raised in suburban Washington, D.C.; graduating from the University of Maryland. His masters and PhD were earned from Ohio University. His personal essays and poems have appeared in numerous print and online journals and magazines. Along with his books listed below, Bonomo also edited, ''Conversations with Greil Marcus''.

  • Bonomo is a recipient of fellowship awards in both prose and poetry from the Illinois Arts Council.

Primary Literary Genre(s): Non-Fiction; Poetry

Primary Audience(s): Adult readers

Joe Bonomo on WorldCat :

Selected Titles

AC/DC's Highway to hell /
ISBN: 1441190287 OCLC: 494982904

Continuum, New York : 2010.

This is a brilliant study of the creation, impact, and legacy of one of rock's great albums, and a hymn to the nature of teenage fandom. Released in 1979, AC/DC's "Highway To Hell" was the infamous last album recorded with singer Bon Scott, who died of alcohol poisoning in London in February of 1980. Officially chalked up to "Death by Misadventure," Scott's demise has forever secured the album's reputation as a partying primer and a bible for lethal behavior, branding the album with the fun chaos of alcoholic excess and its flip side, early death. The best songs on "Highway To Hell" achieve Sonic Platonism, translating rock & roll's transcendent ideals in stomping, dual-guitar and eighth-note bass riffing, a Paleolithic drum bed, and insanely, recklessly odd but fun vocals. Joe Bonomo strikes a three - chord essay on the power of adolescence, the durability of rock & roll fandom, and the transformative properties of memory. Why does "Highway To Hell" matter to anyone beyond non-ironic teenagers? Blending interviews, analysis, and memoir with a fan's perspective, "Highway To Hell" dramatizes and celebrates a timeless album that one critic said makes 'disaster sound like the best fun in the world.'

ISBN: 9780143113959 OCLC: 212627376

Penguin Books, New York : 2008.

The prose poems in Installations invite the reader to encounter, in one extraordinary afternoon, a series of twenty art installations where something fantastic, perhaps improbable, occurs at the intersection of installed and imagined. At the heart of this afternoon is the great, dangerous promise of mystery and renewal that greets each spectator who enters a museum. The presence of other visitors underscores the human spirit of the installations, the pooling together of persons in the sometimes confounding but always refreshing wake of great art.

  Jerry Lee Lewis :
ISBN: 9781441118806 OCLC: 676696295

Continuum, New York : ©2009.

This book examines and explains the almighty impact of the Father of Rock'n'Roll.

Jerry Lee Lewis :
ISBN: 0826429661 OCLC: 476805019

Continuum, New York : ©2009.

This book examines and explains the almighty impact of the Father of Rock'n'Roll.

Sweat :
ISBN: 0826428460 OCLC: 84152946

Continuum, New York : 2007.

  The Fleshtones :
ISBN: 9782357791770 OCLC: 816683668

Camion blanc, Rosières-en-Haye : impr. 2012

This must be where my obsession with infinity began :
ISBN: 9780615755458 OCLC: 856904049

Orphan Press, Cordova, TN : ©2013.

In these essays, Bonomo interrogates the dark edges of his suburban youth and explores issues of spirituality, sex, violence, and myth. From the memory of a rebellious Catholic schoolgirl to a coming-of-age story in a porn theater, he turns a prism lens on desire and faith and the body's role in both, and ultimately questions the fallibility as well as the enduring power of memory.