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Three teenage boys, Nort and Dick Shannon and their friend, Bud Merkel, find themselves in the middle of the forbidding Gila Desert on an adventure that will, they hope, lead them to the fabled riches of desert gold. Their guides, the grizzled prospector, Hank Crosby, and the leathery old cowpoke, Billee Dobb, accompany them through blistering heat, savage sandstorms, and the dangers posed by the evil Del Pinzo and his sinister Indian companion, Zapto, men who want the treasure for themselves. In this brilliant, witty, yet fond burlesque of the boys' adventure books, Sorrentino tells the story in interrogative sentences, forcing the reading to answer the very questions of the narrative itself. Gilbert Sorrentino
teaches at Stanford University.