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Junk Mail [Paperback]

Will Self
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Book Description

31 Oct 1996
Will Self's collected journalism and writings. Most of the pieces are centred around the subject of drugs and the counter-culture. Pieces range from an article on crack dealers in the East End called "New Crack City" through to dialogues with Martin Amis, William Burroughs and J.G. Ballard.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd; New edition edition (31 Oct 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140257225
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140257229
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 12.2 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 606,588 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


'His prose crackles with wit' (Independent)

'An explosive collection' (J. G. Ballard, Guardian)

'Self's gifts as stylist and satirist are amply revealed ... we finally get the undivided Self in all his maddening brilliance' (Spectator)

'Each of the essays in this collection of journalism and cartoons provides a hit of intravenous prose, a rush of silly and psychedelic excitement ... like De Quincy before him, he is "twitching away the decent drapery" to reveal something darker, deeper and altogether more funny' (Observer) --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Book Description

Fantastic collection of Will Self's hugely entertaining journalism and cartoons --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a not so clean but still mean writing machine... 16 May 2007
This is a collection of Self's journalism from what can only be described as his 'drug' period. This doesn't affect in the slightest the sharpness of his observations and the wit laced with intellect with which he conyeys his ideas. There are books reviews, articles on visits to crack dens, english prisons, essays (on everything from cryonicists, satanic cults, the state of english culture...) as well as amusing tales of pub conversation on the Orkney Isles and flying 1st class on Virgin Airways...At the back of the book are fascinating conversations between Self and other greats of modern fiction such as Martin Amis and JG Ballard, fascinating that is, if you can keep up with the fluency and ease they discuss ideas on literature etc...The only thing Junk Mail has over his other collection of mainstream journalism Feeding Frenzy, is that the articles are less clipped and the depth of Self's thought is allowed to roam in an less restrained manner. Hilarious, engaging, perceptive and sometimes irreverant - this comes highly recommended.
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Clever, funny and interesting 16 Oct 2000
I admire Will Self. I sometimes imagine that, had I immersed myself in literature and drugs rather than science, I would now be able to write like he does. I suspect a lot of other people feel the same way, but the fact is none of us can, and never really even stood a chance. While not necessarily Self's best book (I prefer his fiction), it's probably the best vehicle for his intellect. He uses his broad vocabulary with spare, erudite precision - the result is easy and relaxing to read. He tackles controversial and emotionally-fraught topics - the result is thought-provoking, humane and sensible, while also being humourous and unconventional.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Self's usual exasperatingly large and well used vocabulary always makes me want to write, and this book was no exception. The subject matter is varied, from his fascination with William Burroughs, opiates and motorways to interviews with Damien Hurst and Martin Amis.
Is this format of "resell what has already been sold" cheeky? Probably. But as compulsive as ever.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Self inflicted laughter 29 Dec 2003
Some quite brilliant articles interviews and journalistic musings from one of the sharpest wits working in Britain today.
The longer sections are quite interesting, particularly the one on Northern Ireland which is a good snap-shot of the situation just before the 1st IRA ceasefire. The one on 'Recovered abuse memories' is a fascinating dive into the twighlight Zone of bastardised freudianism. Its all good really.
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2 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars dont waste your money 12 Mar 2008
A very disappointing rag bag of articles. If you're expecting any insights, bon mots or omnilingual punning, forget it. This is aimed squarely at readers of the Evening Standard who think that they're walking on the wild side
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