on 5 June 2010
I'd agree that this book has a shambolic structure, and it's quite clear that the authors were hangers on who liked to soak in the rarefied air of celebrity around Thompson. What you do get, though, are some good anecdotal insights into the life of a great writer who went off the rails.
on 1 February 2009
Hunter S. Thompson, at his best, was one of the great late 20th century American writers. He played a leading role in elevating journalism to an art form and was a major influence on aspiring writers. However, the wonderful talent he showed in the 60s and 70s gradually dissipated and, apart from the odd tantalising glimpse of greatness, he wrote little of value in his last three decades and became a sad parody of his former self.
The only merit of this book is that it helps to show us how HST's deterioration was facilitated. He was surrounded by a sycophantic circle of enablers who boosted his ego, facilitated his drinking and drug-taking and offered no criticism or advice when confronted with appalling behaviour. The writers fawn over a few isolated incidents of HST's kindness and consideration but are overcome with amusement and admiration when recounting tales of gross behaviour by Thompson, many of whose victims were women and children.
I'm sure that there were people around Thompson who refused to accept and facilitate his behaviour. However, their efforts were doomed to be undermined by enablers such as the writers of this book. The merit of the book is the insight it provides into the circumstances surrounding the deterioration of a great writer.
on 29 October 2008
I'm a big fan of Hunter S. Thompson and try to read and see everything about the outlaw journalist, however Kitchen Readings, which is filled with some interesting and fun stories and strange facts about Gonzo, it isn't the best written book and often lose interest in the story teller.
It does however make you laugh and provide some clear insight into the man .. Hunter S. Thompson was reckless and fun individual and had a way with words.
If your a fan.. you'll love the stories told in the book, not how its written.