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The Place of Dead Roads Paperback – 29 Apr 2010

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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Fourth Estate (29 April 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007341938
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007341931
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.9 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 407,541 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

William Burroughs was born in St Louis, Missouri in 1914. Immensely influential among the Beat writers of the 1950s - notably Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg - he already had an underground reputation before the appearance of his first important book, 'Naked Lunch'. Originally published by the daring and influential Olympia Press (the original publishers of Henry Miller) in France in 1959, it aroused great controversy on publication and was not available in the US until 1962 and in the UK until 1964. The book was adapted for film by David Cronenberg in 1991.

Product Description

Review

‘It’s a comedy and a nightmare of Bosch-like visions, extraordinarily precise vivid visualisations, outrageous ideas like mind bombs.’ Allen Ginsberg

'"The Place of Dead Roads" is Burroughs at his very best, with the same remarkable ear for dialogue and effortless originality.' Guardian

‘The most radical innovator in fiction since Joyce.’ Angela Carter

‘Burroughs has a paranoid vision, but as he himself said: the psychotic is someone who knows what’s really going on.’ J. G. Ballard, Sunday Times

From the Back Cover

'Drawing your gun should be an easy flowing, casual movement, like handing someone a pen, passing the salt, conveying a benediction.'

In this brilliant but surreal fable, William Burroughs continued his ruthless exploration of society's controlling forces – the State, the Church, literature, drugs – in his inimitable and utterly unique style.

‘“The Place of Dead Roads” is Burroughs’ personal gunfight at the OK Corral and features a cast of notorious characters who set out to challenge the morality of small town America.’ Tribune

‘The hard man of Hip…All his energy went into a battle with the agents of “control” – the thought police.’ Guardian

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Edward Kemp on 23 Oct. 2003
Format: Paperback
This book is perhaps one of Burrough's most revealing works. The protagonist Kim Carsons is a youthful figure who in every way embodies Burroughs personality and ideals. Queer but masculine, clever with a hatred of authority, uninhibited and fearless and carrying an encyclopedic knowledge of firearms. The place of Dead Roads is also the work in which he most openly shows his admiration and debt to Jack Black's 'You can't win' (which I would recommend to any anyone reading this). This is probably my personal favorite of all Burrough's works and I would recommend it and the trilogy of which it is part(Cities of the Red Night, The Place of dead roads and the Western Lands)as an accessible starting point into the most important American writer of the late 20th century.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Ben on 25 Jun. 2003
Format: Paperback
Concrete proof that the 1980's were not simply tight jeans, mullets and bad music. Apart from a few cultural refrences this book could easily have been written at the same time as Burroughs earlier stuff and it certainly stands up well in comparison to it. In fact I would go so far to say that this one of his best pieces of work. Combining a strange but compelling story with classic Burroughisms and well-integrated, persuasive arguments about the controlling elements of society, he even chucks in some ancient history for good measure. Funny, disturbing, intelligent and readable.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Paul S. Whiston on 27 Mar. 2001
Format: Paperback
the word virus strikes again in another of burroughs later peices, when he becomes obsseessed with his own mortality, this occupies the central position between the spiritual oddyssey that grew up in the cities of the red night and which was concluded in the western lands... it is the work of an old man who knows he will have to come to terms with himself, his actions, his own legend if he is ever to face his own end with dignity... it is more coherent that much of burroughs work, as the entire trilogy tends to be... we are constantly on a journey with the author, his identity is all the identities and we in turn identify with him, this is a superb peice of art, from the soul, from a superb artist...
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Riccardo Neri on 30 Dec. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A lively and bold imagination, strong and vivid sketches, but something is amiss. It isn't a novel, it's just a vivid succession of colourful images.
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