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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Burroughs bidding fairwell in style., 25 Jan. 2000
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This review is from: The Western Lands (Picador Books) (Paperback)
I believe 'The Western Lands' is Burroughs' last novel, and it shows. It is written in a tone that tells you it is a last novel, like Vonnegut's 'Timequake', and like 'Timequake' it carries with it a poignant melancholy. Burroughs finishes his trilogy which began with Cities Of The Red Night and continued with The Place Of Dead Roads by giving us a retrospective of what feels like all of his work. Junky is in here, as is Queer, The Naked Lunch, and everything in between. As usual he throws together war-films, pornography, and science fiction with the ease of a chef mixing eggs and flour. The result is an exciting, vibrant, and even touching novel that dances to its end like the carnival of the twentieth century. While Naked Lunch will always be the cult Burroughs novel, Western Lands is, for me, the one in which he seals his fate as America's greatest writer of the last century.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Willam S Burroughs Book of the Dead., 10 Jan. 2012
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This review is from: The Western Lands (Picador Books) (Paperback)
I found this to be by far the best fiction Burroughs wrote.I was never that comfortable with the cut and paste technique,or copious amounts of gay sex,body fluids,drugs and horror.I persisted mainly due to his interests in the esoteric and his perceptive insight in humanities dark corners.
Thankfully in this,his last book, he tones what I considered to be "just for the sake of it" shock factor down, and almost follows a traditional narrative (well almost),sparingly interspersed with stream of consciousness writing and what appear to be dream recall sequences.The book also contains an intriguing mix of Egyptian mythology,centipede cult worship,vampirism and toxicology,along with an array of concepts,situations and horrors from Burroughs own imagination.
Overall I'd say this is the authors most accessible and entertaining work,and while still retaining an air of abstraction,temporal distortion and general twistedness it is markedly more coherent than his earlier fiction.
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The Western Lands (Picador Books)
The Western Lands (Picador Books) by William S. Burroughs (Paperback - 2 Dec. 1988)
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