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Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail '72 Mass Market Paperback – Apr 22 1985


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing (April 22 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446313645
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446313643
  • Product Dimensions: 3.7 x 10.5 x 17.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 204 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (57 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #98,406 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Steven R. Travers on June 11 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Hunter Thompson would despise me. I am a conservative Reaganite. I thought Dick Nixon a brilliant President. I think the Lord Jesus Christ saves my soul. Whereas I despise Michael Moore and do not think he speaks the truth, I admire Hunter Thompson, who is probably a lot closer to Moore's politics than mine. It is not just the passage of time that heals divisions, it is more than that. If I were to analyze Hunter's political nostrums, I would probably find much that I know to be wrong, and that Hunter had enough education and knowledge available to him to know it was wrong but he wrote it anyway. Still, whatever visceral reaction I have to Moore I do not have for Hunter.
I guess humnor must be why. Hunter is absolutely inconoclastic. He is side-splitting. He never smiles, and his writing has no funniness in it. I picture him writing out of dread and hate, yet it magically transforms itself into laughs when my eyes meet his words and transfer to my brain. Forgive my bad attempt to get into his head and "explain" Hunter. It's all I can do to try.
This book is phenomenal. It contains events that are different from any descriptions ever. Others have novelized reality, but nobody splits the difference like Hunter. Hunter's supposed on-scene reportage of Edmund Muskie coming unglued in the New Hampshire snow, Frank Mankiewiczs' furious (drug induced?) ramblings, the one-on-one with Nixon himelf, leaves the reader exhausted in an effort to separate reality from fantasy. Hunter is like the great con man who uses Truth to augment his lies. This is not calling Hunter a liar, it is just an example.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
Mostly an absorbing narrative about the cast of characters and the behind the scenes maneuverings. Perfectly evokes the culture and the politics of the period. Fascinating to compare to Game Change's depiction of the Obama campaign, especially in areas like the different technologies at their disposal. Also interesting to read about the various people as they were then and where they ended up, like campaign manager Gary Hart who resigned from the '76 campaign in disgrace after being caught with a bathing suit clad beauty on a boat. That would likely not be enough to derail a campaign these days.

The book is quite long, so may want to skim some parts, but Thompson is as fascinating as his subjects. Well worth reading.
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By Pete on April 10 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I don't really like american politics and I'm not sure what I was expecting with this one but its just Hunter talking politics.

Maybe I'd be a bit more enthralled if I had lived in that time period or maybe even been American, but I gave up on this book by the forth chapter. It's not the same as the rest of his writing. Its drier and I feel like there is a lot of stuff that you needed to know and understand prior to reading. For example, he constantly just mentions politicians and something they did without going into detail or really explaining the purpose of the addition.

I felt out of the loop. Maybe this book is amazing if you have some grasp of the '72 election, but I don't so it wasn't.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Although not as thrilling as Hell's Angels and not as profound as Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, F+L: on the campaign trail '72 does offer a brilliant analysis of the frenzied, unpredictable nature of American politics. With the McGovern/Nixon presidential race as its focus, this book gives the reader an insider's unflinching view of a year out with the candidates as they crisscrossed the USA. Unfortunately, Thompson takes some of the transcribed dialogue sections a bit too far and the inclusion of many irrelevant details was not necessary. The book should have been properly edited and cut down by about 100-150 pages. But having said that, the word for word transcription of an interview with George McGovern near the end of the book is priceless! What insight! The last 20 pages or so - the "Editor's conversation" - is also very good. If any foreigners want an understanding of the American campaign process, THIS IS THE BOOK TO READ. From no one but Thompson will you get such a realistic account. Gonzo journalism at its twisted peak, perhaps. Excessive at times, but worth the time and effort. Thompson's writing is more penetrating and entertaining than that of any tradional political journalist, period. Hell, you've got to give this guy credit. He's an original! The "football conversation" with Richard Nixon in New Hampshire and the "Sheridan"/Jerry Rubin incident on Muskie's Florida train are both hilarious!
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By Sharbies on Feb. 13 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The item was shipped off twice due to the negligence of the postal service, and it STILL arrived faster than most books I had ordered.

THANKS!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is probably my favorite example of political journalism, in that it is informative, insightful, but never dull. I'm not one for long reviews, and I think all that I could say about this book has already been said by the other Amazon.com people. I just wanted to tack five stars onto this book. Thompson's work here and in Hell's Angels probably inspired hundreds of people to become journalists, and I am one of them.
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