Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas Book Review - Our Thoughts and RatingAs a writer - bin all that "cultural icon" stuff, all the cartoon strips and cocaine blizzards and Colorado screamin' - it is hard to see Hunter S Thompson as much more than a footnote, a minor stylist, a figure very much of his era who became stranded when times moved on and he refused to budge. Watergate was like something this Thompson dreamt into existence, coming down one morning from a barking LSD high. But in the quarter of a century since that clammy apotheosis, Thompson has increasingly traded on his totemic reputation. So how did such a relatively minor figure become the recipient of such monumental reams of hagiography? The answer is that like other "iconic" figures - Pollock, Lennon, Kerouac - so much hip faith was invested in his countercultural status that the market could not stand an overhaul: so much was riding on the assumed verities that to take away the myth became at some point unthinkable. And unthought is precisely what the HST myth continues to be.
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Joy McEntee does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment. American journalist Hunter S Thompson is a mythical figure, partly by his own design, and partly, perversely, against his wishes. While writing he consumed: Chivas Regal, Dunhills, cocaine, orange juice, marijuana, Heineken, huge helpings of food, LSD, Chartreuse, clove cigarettes, gin and pornographic movies. He then spent some time in the hot tub with champagne and Dove Bars. Compare this with the drug collection of Raoul Duke, the first person narrator of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas :. We had 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 multi-colored uppers, downers, screamers, laughers … and also a quart of tequila, a quart of rum, a case of Budweiser, a pint of raw either and two dozen amyls … The only thing that really worried me was the ether. This arises in part from the approach which Thompson made famous: Gonzo journalism.
This book was published in , but it first appeared as a two part series in Rolling Stone magazine in It may not be his best book, in terms of writing talent, but it has captured the attention of millions of readers and is still talked about to this day. Gonzo journalism, effectively founded by Hunter S. Thompson through the creation of this book, is a passionate and exaggerated form of journalism where the author is often a main part of the story. Thompson uses this book to focus on his two visits to Las Vegas, alongside his attorney and just about every drug imaginable for research purposes of course.
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What is the book about?
Thompson , illustrated by Ralph Steadman. The story follows its protagonist, Raoul Duke , and his attorney, Dr. Gonzo , as they descend on Las Vegas to chase the American Dream through a drug-induced haze, all the while ruminating on the failure of the s countercultural movement. The work is Thompson's most famous book, and is noted for its lurid descriptions of illegal drug use and its early retrospective on the culture of the s. Its popularization of Thompson's highly subjective blend of fact and fiction has become known as gonzo journalism. The novel first appeared as a two-part series in Rolling Stone magazine in , and was published as a book in Gonzo, respectively.