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Freak Kingdom

Freak Kingdom

Hunter S. Thompson's Manic Ten-Year Crusade Against American Fascism

The story of Hunter S. Thompson’s crusade against Richard Nixon and the threat of fascism in America–and the devastating price he paid for it
Hunter S. Thompson is often misremembered as a wise-cracking, drug-addled cartoon character. This book reclaims him for what he truly was: a fearless opponent of corruption and fascism, one who sacrificed his future well-being to fight against it, rewriting the rules of journalism and political satire in the process. This skillfully told and dramatic story shows how Thompson saw the danger of Richard Nixon early and embarked on a life-defining campaign to stop it. In his fevered effort to expose institutional injustice, Thompson pushed himself far beyond his natural limits, sustained by drugs, mania, and little else. For ten years, he cast aside his old ambitions, troubled his family, and likely hastened his own decline, along the way producing some of the best political writing in our history.
This timely biography recalls a period of anger and derangement in American politics, and one writer with the guts to tell the truth.
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Genre: Nonfiction / Biography & Autobiography / Editors, Journalists, Publishers

On Sale: October 30th 2018

Price: $28 / $36.5 (CAD)

Page Count: 416

ISBN-13: 9781541767942

What's Inside

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Reader Reviews


"Timothy Denevi's Freak Kingdom is a high-octane and elegantly written study of Hunter S. Thompson's fatwah against fascism. The damn thing is alive with anarchistic and climactically redemptive Gonzo mischief. A fierce resistance fable for our troubled times!"—Douglas Brinkley, Katherine Tsanoff Brown Chair in Humanities and Professor of History at Rice University, and author of Cronkite
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"Hunter Thompson is back and very much alive in this sympathetic and sharply written 'best years of his life' bio. I loved it."—Terry Gilliam, director of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
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"Based not on the Upper West Side or in West Hollywood but in Woody Creek, Colorado, Hunter S. Thompson got onto the page more of the 1960s and 1970s than any of his contemporaries. In this painstaking, exquisitely detailed, and impressively balanced book, Timothy Denevi conveys at what extraordinary cost to Thompson such herculean work was accomplished. If a writer doesn't aim to cause trouble, why even bother?"—David Shields
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"Surreal, astonishing, and at times deeply disturbing, Freak Kingdom is a welcome and timely revision to the popular hagiography of the larger-than-life Hunter S. Thompson depicted by popular culture. A necessary read for anyone who wishes to understand our current political moment."—Jennifer Percy, winner of the National Magazine Award and author of Demon Camp
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"Timothy Denevi shines a long-overdue light the powerful idealism that underlies all of Hunter S. Thompson's best writing, and he proves us that Hunter's writing is just as relevant and important today as it was in the early 70s. This book is a must-read for anyone concerned about our current political situation, and shows why Hunter's books continue to inspire new generations of readers."—Juan F. Thompson, author of Stories I Tell Myself: Growing up with Hunter S. Thompson
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In the News

Hunter S. Thompson, James Salter, and a Drunken Trip to Kentucky

But Hunter represents something wholly alien to the other candidates for sheriff: ideas. And sympathy towards the young, generous, grass-oriented society which is making the only serious effort to face the technological nightmare we have created. The only thing against him is that he is a visionary. He wants too pure a world.
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Gonzo Socialism

Denevi describes how Thompson abandoned his dream of becoming a novelist in the early 1960s to focus on journalism — partially to pay the bills, but also to try to change the course of US politics, which he feared were taking an apocalyptic turn following the assassination of John F. Kennedy.
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