Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Kurt Andersen’s 5 favorite ’60s books

Kurt Andersen is the author of the novels Heyday and Turn of the Century, among other books. He writes for television, film, and the stage, contributes to Vanity Fair, and hosts the public radio program Studio 360. He has previously been a columnist for New York, The New Yorker, and Time, editor in chief of New York, and co-founder of Spy.

His new novel is True Believers.

One of Andersen’s favorite ’60s books, as told to The Daily Beast:
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1972)
by Hunter S. Thompson

When I was 17, two years after Tom Wolfe had rewired my sensibility, Hunter Thompson provided a tune-up with his magical-realist chronicle of a journalistic expedition to Las Vegas to a) report on a National District Attorneys Association conference on drugs, and b) consume huge quantities of drugs (LSD, mescaline, cocaine, ether, etc.). Thompson went all in, and then further still. If Mailer embodied a certain Northeastern middle-aged male variant of the ’60s, Thompson was its iconic Western cowboy iteration. An inscribed copy of the book (like my copy of Catch-22, signed by Joseph Heller) is one of my treasures.
Read about another book on the list.

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas is among Samuel Muston's 10 best travel books and Willie Geist's six favorite humor books.

--Marshal Zeringue