Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas: A Savage Journey to the Heart of the American Dream Paperback – May 12 1998
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Heralded as the "best book on the dope decade" by the New York Times Book Review, Hunter S. Thompson's documented drug orgy through Las Vegas would no doubt leave Nancy Reagan blushing and D.A.R.E. founders rethinking their motto. Under the pseudonym of Raoul Duke, Thompson travels with his Samoan attorney, Dr. Gonzo, in a souped-up convertible dubbed the "Great Red Shark." In its trunk, they stow "two bags of grass, seventy-five pellets of mescaline, five sheets of high-powered blotter acid, a salt shaker half-full of cocaine and a whole galaxy of multicolored uppers, downers, screamers, laughers.... A quart of tequila, a quart of rum, a case of Budweiser, a pint of raw ether and two dozen amyls," which they manage to consume during their short tour.
On assignment from a sports magazine to cover "the fabulous Mint 400"--a free-for-all biker's race in the heart of the Nevada desert--the drug-a-delic duo stumbles through Vegas in hallucinatory hopes of finding the American dream (two truck-stop waitresses tell them it's nearby, but can't remember if it's on the right or the left). They of course never get the story, but they do commit the only sins in Vegas: "burning the locals, abusing the tourists, terrifying the help." For Thompson to remember and pen his experiences with such clarity and wit is nothing short of a miracle; an impressive feat no matter how one feels about the subject matter. A first-rate sensibility twinger, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas is a pop-culture classic, an icon of an era past, and a nugget of pure comedic genius. --Rebekah Warren
From the Inside Flap
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas is the best chronicle of drug-soaked, addle-brained, rollicking good times ever committed to the printed page. It is also the tale of a long weekend road trip that has gone down in the annals of American pop culture as one of the strangest journeys ever undertaken.
Now this cult classic of gonzo journalism is a major motion picture from Universal, directed by Terry Gilliam and starring Johnny Depp and Benicio del Toro. Opens everywhere on May 22, 1998.
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Top Customer Reviews
He is heading to Las Vegas to cover the "Mint 400", a motorbike race where there is more desert dust than media story. Armed with a boot-full of drugs and his aggressive, slightly crazed Samoan lawyer Dr Gonzo, they rocket across the highway in their "great red shark" convertible in search of the fabled American Dream.
Thompson's graphically acurate descriptions of their drug binge across the buzzing lights and sounds of Vegas are truly remarkable and funny. He pokes fun at what is deemed the dream as they fraud their way through two 5* hotels and encounter many other fun and perilous adventures on the way. My favourite parts (the whole book is full of them) are when they pick up the hitchhiker, the bath scene with "White Rabbit" (a Jefferson Airplane song), the police anti-drug rally and the scene before entering and inside the Circus Circus casino.
A truly wacked out and crazy adventure story through the eyes of an original hippie tripper, whose analysis and derision of things around him is delivered in a fun and insightful manner. A thoroughly enjoyable read; laugh along at this audacious adventure. If you have seen the movie, you will enjoy the book; if you have read the book you will enjoy the movie. A mirror of each other...a total classic!
Even though this book was hard to follow at times, I really liked this book because of the eccentric humor in it. From the start of the novel it's funny to read how the characters hallucinate, for example, when Duke was on the highway heading for Las Vegas he thinks he see bats and he starts swinging at them but he is really swinging at nothing. Also in the beginning of this story they pick up a hitchhiker and tell him some crazy story about why they are going to Vegas. It was funny because they scare him so badly that he jumped out of the car and ran away in a panic.
I also like this novel because of the fact that nothing in the book is ever accomplished by the two characters. Even so you will never get bored of this book. They never finishing covering the Mint 500, the whole purpose for going to Las Vegas. Neither do they finish covering another story on drugs but because of the crazy incidents they go through because of their over indulgence of drugs its makes the story very interesting.
This Las Vegas is the Las Vegas Thompson/Duke allows us to see. It's an enjoyably loud and discolored city, with loud obnoxious people and bright blinding lights. But beyond all that, the city is a wading pool for all the absurdities present in this society since its birth. We can be the naive hitchhiker just looking for a ride, or the dumb photographer looking for the best action shots, or the cute blonde stuck in an elevator with a drugged-out ape and his quiet baldheaded compadre. These are the faces associated with the society we've bred: the society obsessed with both looking AND feeling good about itself while at the same time trying to hold onto that fabric of Puritanical or Calvinistic (or whatever) moralism that clung to the Mayflower. These are all people who want a slice of that dream.
For Raoul Duke and his attorney, Dr. Gonzo, all they want to do is load themselves up with drugs, get screwed up (in mind and body), destroy motel rooms, etc., all expenses paid. And what better place for all this than Las Vegas? Apparently, Los Angeles just got too boring for our protagonists. The "mission" to cover the Mint 500 race for a sports magazine is just a slight detour in the action.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
This novel stands as a classic how[not] to manual W/R/T entheogenic, psychotropic (& other) drugs. It's nice to get the whole story; novels are fuller, more detailed, more... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Lepus Aquaticus
great book, mine was labeled as used but I couldn't even tell. the book is practically new. I believe I had bought my from thrift booksPublished 3 months ago by York
Used Condition was indicated as "very good" but was really like decent or worst. Overall great bookPublished 11 months ago by truman
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas is one of those classic books I just can't appreciate.
Two guys, a reporter and a lawyer, are sent to cover a road race in the Nevada... Read more
I was disappointed with this book. I've read other articles and writings by Hunter S. Thompson (The Great Shark Hunt: Strange Tales from a Strange Time) and I know that this man... Read morePublished 21 months ago by Daffy Bibliophile
This book is not about drugs.
It is about the American Dream©. How can millions of people share one dream? Is it tangible? Huntable? Read more
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