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Gonzo: The Life of Hunter S. Thompson by…

Gonzo: The Life of Hunter S. Thompson

by Corey Seymour, Jann S. Wenner (Author)

Other authors: Jeff Armstrong (Contributor), Steve Ayers (Contributor), Sonny Barger (Contributor), Ed Bastian (Contributor), Judy Belushi (Contributor)107 more, Tom Benton (Contributor), Sandy Berger (Contributor), Porter Bibb (Contributor), Neville Blakemore (Contributor), Bob Bone (Contributor), Ed Bradley (Contributor), Bob Braudis (Contributor), Doug Brinkley (Contributor), Pat Buchanan (Contributor), Jimmy Buffett (Contributor), Pat Caddell (Contributor), Tim Cahill (Contributor), Doug Carpenter (Contributor), Jimmy Carter (Contributor), James Carville (Contributor), John Clancy (Contributor), Michael Cleverly (Contributor), Rich Cohen (Contributor), Tim Crouse (Contributor), Johnny Depp (Introduction), Johnny Depp (Contributor), Bill Dixon (Contributor), Joe Edwards (Contributor), Al Eisele (Contributor), Joe Eszterhas (Contributor), Jeanette Etheridge (Contributor), Wayne Ewing (Contributor), Ben Fee (Contributor), David Felton (Contributor), Tim Ferris (Contributor), Deborah Fuller (Contributor), Bob Geiger (Contributor), Jack Germond (Contributor), Terry Gilliam (Contributor), Mitch Glazer (Contributor), Gerry Goldstein (Contributor), Miriam Good (Contributor), Richard Goodwin (Contributor), William Greider (Contributor), Gaylord Guenin (Contributor), Stacey Hadash (Contributor), Hal Haddon (Contributor), David Halberstam (Contributor), Mary Harris (Contributor), John D. Hawke (Contributor), Roger Hawke (Contributor), Warren Hinckle (Contributor), Anjelica Huston (Contributor), Lou Ann Iler (Contributor), Loren Jenkins (Contributor), Don Johnson (Contributor), Jeff Kass (Contributor), William Kennedy (Contributor), Margot Kidder (Contributor), Sarah Lazin (Contributor), Semmes Luckett (Contributor), Norman Mailer (Contributor), Frank Mankiewicz (Contributor), Marilyn Manson (Contributor), David McCumber (Contributor), Terry McDonell (Contributor), Gene McGarr (Contributor), George McGovern (Contributor), Sarah Murray (Contributor), Laila Nabulsi (Contributor), Lynn Nesbit (Contributor), Jack Nicholson (Contributor), Paul Oakenfold (Contributor), Ann Owlsley (Contributor), Paul Pascarella (Contributor), Sean Penn (Contributor), Charles Perry (Contributor), Tobias Perse (Contributor), Pete Peters (Contributor), Roxanne Pulitzer (Contributor), Sally Quinn (Contributor), Clifford Ridley (Contributor), Alan Rinzler (Contributor), Curtis Robinson (Contributor), Catherine Sabonis-Bradley (Contributor), Terry Sabonis-Chafee (Contributor), Shelby Sadler (Contributor), Paul Scanlon (Contributor), Paul Semonin (Contributor), James Silberman (Contributor), Michael Solheim (Contributor), Bill Stankey (Contributor), Anna Steadman (Contributor), Ralph Steadman (Contributor), Lou Stein (Contributor), Michael Stepanian (Contributor), George Stranahan (Contributor), Patti Stranahan (Contributor), Jack Thibeau (Contributor), Hunter S. Thompson (Contributor), Juan Thompson (Contributor), George Tobia (Contributor), Sari Tuschman (Contributor), Gerald Tyrrell (Contributor), Kallen von Renkl (Contributor), John Walsh (Contributor), Tex Weaver (Contributor), Jane Wenner (Contributor), John Wilbur (Contributor), Tom Wolfe (Contributor), Sondi Wright (Contributor), Barney Wycoff (Contributor)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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Showing 1-5 of 8 (next | show all)
Compiled from interviews with the people that knew him the best from the beginning of his life to the end, Gonzo is a fascinating portrait of the complex, immensely talented, and extremely flawed writer, Hunter S. Thompson. The format, basically an oral biography, ensures an authenticity and immediacy that a single biographer couldn’t duplicate. ( )
1 vote Hagelstein | Jul 28, 2010 |
I have only read The Gonzo Papers Volume 3 so far of his actual works. And having now read this book, I wish I had just stuck to reading some more of his original works. But there is nothing wrong with this book as oral biographies go. It is quite well done. Some of the other reviewers on LibraryThing have commented justly on some of the concerns about this genre of type of biography and about some of the the lacunae of this example of the genre. I almost wish I didn't know about all the examples of vile behaviour that he engaged in. I would have liked to have just stuck to the journalism itself. Oh, well, too late. Today I just bought Volume 1 of The Gonzo Papers and that will be my next book. I will try to link all the biographical sequence I remember from the book under review to the date stamp of the articles that I will see in The Gonzo Papers.
  libraryhermit | May 20, 2010 |
As a biography, I loved this book for its format. So many impressions from so many people close to Thompson were documented, I did feel like I got to know him in as a balanced a way as you can achieve with a biography. ( )
  harrisfi | Jun 15, 2009 |
I had realised that Thompson must have been a sort of living hurricane, leaving mile-wide trails of destruction in his wake. I hadn't realised just how complex it was.

This biography is pieced together from recollections of several dozen people Thompson knew, from childhood friends to girlfriends to friends to enemies. You hear of his irresistable charisma, which could seduce women and make men into his friends and sidekicks. You hear of his early devotion to his craft. You hear that he was an awful, abusive husband.

You also hear of his quixotic side. His passion for the underdog, and his generosity. You hear that his son was afraid of him and his dark, uncertain moods. You hear that he believed the drugs and alcohol fuelled his creativity. Perhaps that's why he eventually allowed them destroy his ability to work. You learn of his violent, petulant rages when he was thwarted.

You hear too damn much, or at least too much for it to make sense. I just can't understand how even someone of his talent and charisma could get away with treating people the way he did. I realise that he was most likely a lonely and insecure man underneath it all, and some of his friends seem to have responded to that - but there are limits to one's patience.

I'm not done with him yet - I've added some more books to my library list, and maybe I can come up with a more rounded picture of him. In the meantime, read this book; it's a very interesting read and got me thinking. ( )
  Cynara | Jun 10, 2009 |
(Adding this parenthetical comment about two months later. I had never heard of "Oral Biographies" when I read this book. I have found out, since, that it is all the rave. I am not a fan. Please read the review with this caveat in mind.)

This is an unconventional telling of an unconventional life. Rather than tell the story of Hunter Thompson, the choice was made to have others tell that story. (Hence, the statement on the cover “An Oral Biography.”) This biography is made up of Thompson’s friends, lovers, partners, etc. talking about that life. None of the quotes are more than two pages long (some just one sentence), but it still tells a coherent story (at least as coherent as possible with Thompson.) And, while it does justice to the haphazardness that was Thompson’s life, there is something missing. This only drives home the fact that any biography is only part the story of someone’s life, the rest being the author’s interpretation of that life. And it is that interpretation that seems to be missing. Of course, that might be a good thing. But even in editing the quotes to be used, the “authors” are making judgments about that life and what will be told.

If you don’t know the full life of Hunter S. Thompson, this will fill you in. And it is as truthful as any biography can be. I just had two complaints. First, because it was made up of people telling their stories about Thompson, a few of them tell more about themselves than about Thompson. In particular, the stories from his first wife (Sandy Thompson) start out talking about him, but wind up being about her. Second, the book redundantly seems to swing between “he was on drugs”, “he was nice guy”, “he was on drugs”, “he was a nice guy”. I’m sure both are true, and both were true throughout his life. But the structure of this collection seems to try and focus on each at different times. But when the book is strong, it is very strong – never as evident as when his son and friends tell about Thompson’s last days. What does come out (even if unevenly told) is that Thompson was what we expected - a genius addict who was a decent human being. ( )
  figre | Aug 24, 2008 |
Showing 1-5 of 8 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Corey Seymourprimary authorall editionscalculated
Wenner, Jann S.Authormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Armstrong, JeffContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ayers, SteveContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Barger, SonnyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bastian, EdContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Belushi, JudyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Benton, TomContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Berger, SandyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bibb, PorterContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Blakemore, NevilleContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bone, BobContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bradley, EdContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Braudis, BobContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brinkley, DougContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Buchanan, PatContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Buffett, JimmyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Caddell, PatContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Cahill, TimContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Carpenter, DougContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Carter, JimmyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Carville, JamesContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Clancy, JohnContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Cleverly, MichaelContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Cohen, RichContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Crouse, TimContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Depp, JohnnyIntroductionsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Depp, JohnnyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Dixon, BillContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Edwards, JoeContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Eisele, AlContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Eszterhas, JoeContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Etheridge, JeanetteContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ewing, WayneContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Fee, BenContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Felton, DavidContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ferris, TimContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Fuller, DeborahContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Geiger, BobContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Germond, JackContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Gilliam, TerryContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Glazer, MitchContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Goldstein, GerryContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Good, MiriamContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Goodwin, RichardContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Greider, WilliamContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Guenin, GaylordContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hadash, StaceyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Haddon, HalContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Halberstam, DavidContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Harris, MaryContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hawke, John D.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hawke, RogerContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hinckle, WarrenContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Huston, AnjelicaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Iler, Lou AnnContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Jenkins, LorenContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Johnson, DonContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kass, JeffContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kennedy, WilliamContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kidder, MargotContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lazin, SarahContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Luckett, SemmesContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Mailer, NormanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Mankiewicz, FrankContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Manson, MarilynContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McCumber, DavidContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McDonell, TerryContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McGarr, GeneContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McGovern, GeorgeContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Murray, SarahContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Nabulsi, LailaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Nesbit, LynnContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Nicholson, JackContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Oakenfold, PaulContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Owlsley, AnnContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Pascarella, PaulContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Penn, SeanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Perry, CharlesContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Perse, TobiasContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Peters, PeteContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Pulitzer, RoxanneContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Quinn, SallyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ridley, CliffordContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Rinzler, AlanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Robinson, CurtisContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sabonis-Bradley, CatherineContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sabonis-Chafee, TerryContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sadler, ShelbyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Scanlon, PaulContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Semonin, PaulContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Silberman, JamesContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Solheim, MichaelContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Stankey, BillContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Steadman, AnnaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Steadman, RalphContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Stein, LouContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Stepanian, MichaelContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Stranahan, GeorgeContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Stranahan, PattiContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Thibeau, JackContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Thompson, Hunter S.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Thompson, JuanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tobia, GeorgeContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tuschman, SariContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tyrrell, GeraldContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
von Renkl, KallenContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Walsh, JohnContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Weaver, TexContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wenner, JaneContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wilbur, JohnContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wolfe, TomContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wright, SondiContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wycoff, BarneyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Newton, JoeCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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No beast so fierce but knows some touch of prey. . . .
But I know none, and therefore am no beast.
- William Shakespeare, King Richard the Third
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Hunter S Thompson was part of the DNA of Rolling Stone, one of those twisting strands of chemicals around which a new life is formed.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0316005274, Hardcover)

Few American lives are stranger, more action-packed, or wilder than that of Hunter S. Thompson. Born a rebel in Louisville, Kentucky, Thompson spent a lifetime channeling his energy and insight into such landmark works as Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas - and his singular and provocative style challenged and revolutionized writing.
Now, for the first time ever, Jann Wenner and Corey Seymour have interviewed the Good Doctor's friends, family, acquaintances and colleagues and woven their memories into a brilliant oral biography. From Hell's Angels leader Sonny Barger to Ralph Steadman to Jack Nicholson to Jimmy Buffett to Pat Buchanan to Marilyn Manson and Thompson's two wives, son, and longtime personal assistant, more than 100 members of Thompson's inner circle bring into vivid focus the life of a man who was even more complicated, tormented, and talented than any previous portrait has shown. It's all here in its uncensored glory: the creative frenzies, the love affairs, the drugs and booze and guns and explosives and, ultimately, the tragic suicide. As Thompson was fond of saying, "Buy the ticket, take the ride."

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:16:14 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Few American lives are stranger, more action-packed, or wilder than that of Hunter S. Thompson. Born a rebel in Louisville, Kentucky, Thompson spent a lifetime channeling his energy and insight into such landmark works as Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas--and his singular and provocative style challenged and revolutionized writing. Now, two of his colleagues have interviewed the Good Doctor's friends, family, acquaintances and colleagues, from Hell's Angels leader Sonny Barger to Ralph Steadman to Jack Nicholson to Jimmy Buffett to Pat Buchanan to Marilyn Manson and Thompson's two wives, son, and longtime personal assistant, and woven their memories into an oral biography. It's all here in its uncensored glory: the creative frenzies, the love affairs, the drugs and booze and guns and explosives and, ultimately, the tragic suicide. As Thompson was fond of saying, "Buy the ticket, take the ride."--From publisher description.… (more)

» see all 2 descriptions

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