The Rosewater Foundation was founded by United States senator Lister Ames Rosewater of Indiana to help Rosewater descendants avoid paying taxes on the family estate in Rosewater County. It is operated by a large legal firm in New York and provides an annual pension of $3.5 million to Eliot, the senator's son.
Eliot, a World War II veteran and volunteer firefighter who has developed a social conscience, sets out across America visiting various small towns before landing in Rosewater. Eliot's drunkenness, his generous relationship with the poor in Rosewater, and his odd relationship with his wife make him appear eccentric and mentally ill. Norman Mushari, a conniving lawyer, is determined to prove Eliot insane so that he can reroute a portion of the Rosewater fortune to unwitting distant Rosewater cousins in Rhode Island, thus earning a portion for himself.
After experiencing a breakdown, Eliot spends a year in a mental institution where he is then visited by his father, lawyer and Kilgore Trout, his favorite science fiction author. He wills his fortune to fifty-seven children whose mothers have claimed he fathered, and asks that they be fruitful and multiply.
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Dial Press Trade Paperback (September 8, 1998)
Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.6 x 8 inches
Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces