BOOKSMITH: Tao Lin / Trip: Psychedelics, Alienation, and Change

Thursday, May 17, 2018 - 7:00pm to 8:30pm

Booksmith hosts Tao Lin for his new book Trip: Psychedelics, Alienation, and Change. With Tao in conversation is The Believer's Ross Simonini -- please join us!


Please note: this event begins at 7pm. Seating is limited, and is first come, first served. If you would like to reserve a seat, please purchase a copy of Trip below and put your request in the notes field. Remember, 1 seat = 1 book


Part memoir, part history, part journalistic exposé, Trip is a look at psychedelic drugs, literature, and alienation from one of the twenty-first century’s most innovative novelists—The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test for a new generation.

While reeling from one of the most creative—but at times self-destructive—outpourings of his life, Tao Lin discovered the strange and exciting work of Terence McKenna. McKenna, the leading advocate of psychedelic drugs since Timothy Leary, became for Lin both an obsession and a revitalizing force. In Trip, Lin’s first book-length work of nonfiction, he charts his recovery from pharmaceutical drugs, his surprising and positive change in worldview, and his four-year engagement with some of the hardest questions: Why do we make art? Is the world made of language? What happens when we die? And is the imagination more real than the universe?

In exploring these ideas and detailing his experiences with psilocybin, DMT, salvia, and cannabis, Lin takes readers on a trip through nature, his own past, psychedelic culture, and the unknown.



Trip is not only a book about drugs–it’s about the condition of humans at this point in history, troublingly divorced from our natural capacity for awe by our chemically depleted bodies and minds. This book has changed how I understand myself on a cellular level. It’s a superbly researched, moving, and formally inventive quest for re-enchantment, and Tao Lin’s most compelling and profound book yet.” — Sheila Heti, author of How Should a Person Be?

“Similar to the psychedelic drugs Tao Lin writes about here, this book introduces new ways to consider language, perception, and recovery. It’s a joy to watch Lin interrogate his obsessions so earnestly and thoroughly in an attempt to understand more about the world as he knows it. Trip is a book for anyone interested in learning about what the human mind is capable of seeing and believing.” — Chelsea Hodson, author of Tonight I’m Someone Else

“Tao Lin took all the drugs so that we wouldn’t have to, and the result is astonishing, mind-expanding, beautiful, and profound. The whole of humanity seems contained in this one book.”
Kristen Iskandrian, author of Motherest

“Tao Lin’s writing reliably restores my sense of the inexhaustible strangeness of even one minute of human thought and feeling.” — Michael W. Clune, author of White Out



Tao Lin is the author of the novels TaipeiRichard Yates, and Eeeee Eee Eeee, the novella Shoplifting from American Apparel, the story collection Bed, and the poetry collections cognitive-behavioral therapy and you are a little bit happier than i am. He is the founder and editor of the literary press Muumuu House. His work has been translated into twelve languages and he lives in Manhattan. Author photo by Noah Kalina.


Ross Simonini is writer, artist, and musician. He lives in Northern California and New York. His debut novel, The Book of Formation, was released by Melville House in late 2017. He is the interviews editor at The Believer magazine and teaches experimental seminars at Columbia University.



RSVP is appreciated, but not required. If you cannot attend the event but would like to request a signed copy of Trip, and/or any of the authors' books, order below and put your request in the comments field.

Trip: Psychedelics, Alienation, and Change By Tao Lin Cover Image
By Tao Lin
ISBN: 9781101974513
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - May 1st, 2018

Taipei (Vintage Contemporaries) By Tao Lin Cover Image
By Tao Lin
ISBN: 9780307950178
Availability: Backordered
Published: Vintage - June 4th, 2013

Bed: Stories By Tao Lin Cover Image
By Tao Lin
ISBN: 9781933633268
Availability: Hard to Find (or) Out of Stock Indefinitely
Published: Melville House - April 1st, 2007

The Book of Formation By Ross Simonini Cover Image
ISBN: 9781612196688
Availability: Hard to Find (or) Out of Stock Indefinitely
Published: Melville House - November 14th, 2017