From the bestselling author of The Rum Diary and king of “Gonzo” journalism Hunter S. Thompson, comes the definitive collection of the journalist’s finest work from Rolling Stone. Fear and Loathing at Rolling Stone showcases the roller-coaster of a career at the magazine that was his literary home.
“Buy the ticket, take the ride,” was a favorite slogan of Hunter S. Thompson, and it pretty much defined both his work and his life. Jann S. Wenner, the outlaw journalist’s friend and editor for nearly thirty-five years, has assembled articles—and a wealth of never- before-seen correspondence and internal memos from Hunter’s storied tenure at Rolling Stone—that begin with Thompson’s infamous run for sheriff of Aspen on the Freak Party ticket in 1970 and end with his final piece on the Bush-Kerry showdown of 2004. In between is Thompson’s remarkable coverage of the 1972 presidential campaign and plenty of attention paid to Richard Nixon; encounters with Muhammad Ali, Bill Clinton, and the Super Bowl; and a lengthy excerpt from his acknowledged masterpiece, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. The definitive volume of Hunter S. Thompson’s work published in the magazine, Fear and Loathing at Rolling Stone traces the evolution of a personal and professional relationship that helped redefine modern American journalism, presenting Thompson through a new prism as he pursued his lifelong obsession: The life and death of the American Dream.
The editors at Rolling Stone had a term for the nut of truth that sprouted from Thompson's raving dispatches from the front lines of American degradation. They called it "the Wisdom," and this riotous new anthology contains plenty. From his own 1970 campaign for sheriff of Aspen, Col., through the sordid tangle of the Nixon years, until his suicide in 2005, Thompson (The Rum Diary) was America's greatest gonzo journalist, each article "a classic of irresponsible gibberish." Readers who prefer their narrators driving drunk and freaking out on mescaline will find much to enjoy here, but Thompson's private correspondence reveals the committed reporter who insisted on grammar and copyediting, the political analyst who reveled in the minutiae of campaign strategy, and the earnest advocate who didn't hesitate to throw his celebrity behind a worthy cause. Too many gonzo writers use the gimmicks of excess to mask their lack of content. Thompson was the opposite. The more dissolute his visions, the deeper his insights become. For all the bravado, a sad, deep kinship with freaks and losers, and America itself, pervades these pages.