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Kerouac: A Biography

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Now that Kerouac's major novel, On the Road is accepted as an American classic, academic critics are slowly beginning to catch up with his experimental literary methods and examine the dozen books comprising what he called 'the legend of Duluoz.' Nearly all of his books have been in print internationally since his death in 1969, and his writing has been discovered and enjo Now that Kerouac's major novel, On the Road is accepted as an American classic, academic critics are slowly beginning to catch up with his experimental literary methods and examine the dozen books comprising what he called 'the legend of Duluoz.' Nearly all of his books have been in print internationally since his death in 1969, and his writing has been discovered and enjoyed by new readers throughout the world. Kerouac's view of the promise of America, the seductive and lovely vision of the beckoning open spaces of our continent, has never been expressed better by subsequent writers, perhaps because Kerouac was our last writer to believe in America's promise--and essential innocence--as the legacy he would explore in his autobiographical fiction.


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Now that Kerouac's major novel, On the Road is accepted as an American classic, academic critics are slowly beginning to catch up with his experimental literary methods and examine the dozen books comprising what he called 'the legend of Duluoz.' Nearly all of his books have been in print internationally since his death in 1969, and his writing has been discovered and enjo Now that Kerouac's major novel, On the Road is accepted as an American classic, academic critics are slowly beginning to catch up with his experimental literary methods and examine the dozen books comprising what he called 'the legend of Duluoz.' Nearly all of his books have been in print internationally since his death in 1969, and his writing has been discovered and enjoyed by new readers throughout the world. Kerouac's view of the promise of America, the seductive and lovely vision of the beckoning open spaces of our continent, has never been expressed better by subsequent writers, perhaps because Kerouac was our last writer to believe in America's promise--and essential innocence--as the legacy he would explore in his autobiographical fiction.

30 review for Kerouac: A Biography

  1. 5 out of 5

    Meike

    When it comes to theoretical books about the Beat generation, Ann Charters is the scholar to turn to. She met the main protagonists of the movemnet as a student and followed their careers all of her life - until this day, hers is the ultimate biography of Kerouac (although this writer would deserve more options, simply to offer readers different angles on his life). Charters, with the help of Allen Ginsberg, re-counts Kerouac's life in great detail and explains the circumstances of his literary When it comes to theoretical books about the Beat generation, Ann Charters is the scholar to turn to. She met the main protagonists of the movemnet as a student and followed their careers all of her life - until this day, hers is the ultimate biography of Kerouac (although this writer would deserve more options, simply to offer readers different angles on his life). Charters, with the help of Allen Ginsberg, re-counts Kerouac's life in great detail and explains the circumstances of his literary output. The tone is rather sober, the text is filled to the brim with dates and descriptions - which is great for lirerary researchers. But Kerouac's life is also the epic legend of an anti-hero, and that's an additional book that needs to be written by someone else. One last remark about the book as an object: The issue by St. Martin's Press is a disgrace to the industry, as it falls apart on first read, and it's also full of typos while the letters look terrible. Come on, guys, you can't be serious!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Paul Bryant

    This is strange and I don't understand it. The received idea is that once On The Road beat-fame sluiced all over Kerouac's life he couldn't take it and he became a misanthropic drunk and eventually a dead beat, at the age of 47, cursing everything and everyone but especially the hippies he had so inspired. Most of that is true, but this 12 year burn-out goes like this : The Dharma Bums (1958) Lonesome Traveler, short story collection (1960) Big Sur (1962) Desolation Angels (1965) Satori in Paris This is strange and I don't understand it. The received idea is that once On The Road beat-fame sluiced all over Kerouac's life he couldn't take it and he became a misanthropic drunk and eventually a dead beat, at the age of 47, cursing everything and everyone but especially the hippies he had so inspired. Most of that is true, but this 12 year burn-out goes like this : The Dharma Bums (1958) Lonesome Traveler, short story collection (1960) Big Sur (1962) Desolation Angels (1965) Satori in Paris, novella (1965) Vanity of Duluoz (1968) Those were the new ones. In his last 10 years he also exhumed, prepared, polished and published : Visions of Cody (1951–1952; published 1960) Pic, novella (1951 & 1969; published 1971) Doctor Sax (1952; published 1959) Book of Dreams (1952–1960; published 1960) Maggie Cassidy (1953; published 1959) The Subterraneans, novella (1953; published 1958) Tristessa, novella (1955–1956; published 1960) Visions of Gerard (1956; published 1963) Man, that's a ton of work for a burnout drunk. Well, I read this when I was a fan and I'm not a fan anymore and it did provide me with the handy and well-known life lesson of not taking too close a look at your heroes because the dose of reality you get is discombobulatory in the extreme and might lead to tears before bedtime. Also : it later dawned on me that Ann Charters was the wife of Samuel Charters who pioneered the concept that old 78s made by black people were worth listening to, and he wrote the first book about that called The Country Blues and then he proceeded to produce records by Country Joe and the Fish and John Fahey. Mr and Mrs Charters, a dynamo 60s countercultural team.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Serenity

    The definitive biography of Jack Kerouac. Helps dispell the myth of Kerouac as a total free spirit and liberated beatnik who helped pave the way for the sixties. Rather, it shows him to be the extremely conflicted man that he was, caught between two opposing value systems that he could not reconcile within himself and that eventually destroyed him, leaving him to retreat into isolation, alcoholism, and closed-mindedness at the end of his unfortunately short life. I recommend paring this reading The definitive biography of Jack Kerouac. Helps dispell the myth of Kerouac as a total free spirit and liberated beatnik who helped pave the way for the sixties. Rather, it shows him to be the extremely conflicted man that he was, caught between two opposing value systems that he could not reconcile within himself and that eventually destroyed him, leaving him to retreat into isolation, alcoholism, and closed-mindedness at the end of his unfortunately short life. I recommend paring this reading with "Ginsberg: A Biography" to get a complete portrait of the man, although the light shines on the Kerouac's torment and self-destruction even more harshly in the Ginsberg bio, to the point where it becomes depressing.

  4. 5 out of 5

    George K. Ilsley

    Somehow I've always managed to avoid reading this book. Even Charters is apologizing in the newish introduction. The book is at its worst with Buddhist elements. Kerouac desperately needed a teacher and Charters is even more lost trying to explain 3rd or 4th-hand Buddhist concepts to us. Life is Suffering is given as "Buddhist law" but it is merely an observation— one of what is known as the four noble truths. Poor drunk Jack took refuge in suffering and his ego did not let go. There are three mo Somehow I've always managed to avoid reading this book. Even Charters is apologizing in the newish introduction. The book is at its worst with Buddhist elements. Kerouac desperately needed a teacher and Charters is even more lost trying to explain 3rd or 4th-hand Buddhist concepts to us. Life is Suffering is given as "Buddhist law" but it is merely an observation— one of what is known as the four noble truths. Poor drunk Jack took refuge in suffering and his ego did not let go. There are three more noble truths Jack! But no he is too drunk. Charters also describes the Buddhist "ideal" of escaping from life which is complete and utter nonsense. One feels that all the writer knows about Buddhism she picked up from the ravings of an ego-taught speedster. Still, three stars.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Simon Robs

    "On The Road," the "Little Rock Nine" and "Sputnik" all came about in Sept./Oct. of 1957, oh, and so did I - looking back now with age creeping in at the corners of memory to worldly events surrounding one's birth and wondering if along with DNA could these outside dynamics play a role as imprints on un/consciousness? I, without full credulity, [like to] think so, in that once denied borders were crossed, new horizons were envisioned and doors of perception flung wide open to the making it new. K "On The Road," the "Little Rock Nine" and "Sputnik" all came about in Sept./Oct. of 1957, oh, and so did I - looking back now with age creeping in at the corners of memory to worldly events surrounding one's birth and wondering if along with DNA could these outside dynamics play a role as imprints on un/consciousness? I, without full credulity, [like to] think so, in that once denied borders were crossed, new horizons were envisioned and doors of perception flung wide open to the making it new. Kerouac is for hipster kids, for youth, and also nostalgic for those whose youth now gone is memory pulling at strings of hope once held as future to behold. All told, Kerouac's life reads tragic, paradoxical and, fuddled, logorrheic, depressiveness with heights of earned and not grandeur. He was a man at vanguard to his time with change afoot beaten down and beatified. He's known for a few of his several books mainly, though to him as with Proust all the books run together to complete the whole one story of his life. Yet it's mostly the peeps who surround him that are the real story. Jack it seems was a sad & solemn soul from front to back and back again just like his legendary crisscrossing the land at dizzying pace of a Benzedrine high. His bop prose, lunatic Zen humanity & Catholic mysticism bolsters the myth of Duluoz. Such as it is. Beat meat for the generations.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    Interesting...don't know how objective it is. Charters is good about putting all the facts in, but manages to excuse a lot of things that, if you were close to Kerouac and his compatriots, were probably not excusable. I enjoyed reading something set in the 1940s and 50s that wasn't Donna Reed-esque...reinforces that all the societal problems we have today were around, the mainstream and media just ignored them. Interesting...don't know how objective it is. Charters is good about putting all the facts in, but manages to excuse a lot of things that, if you were close to Kerouac and his compatriots, were probably not excusable. I enjoyed reading something set in the 1940s and 50s that wasn't Donna Reed-esque...reinforces that all the societal problems we have today were around, the mainstream and media just ignored them.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Ronald Wise

    I don't think I've ever ready anything by Kerouac, but this was the second time I've read this biography from my personal library. Coincidentally I read it this time when the 50th anniversary of the publishing of his On the Road was being noted in the media, and so I heard a lot of supplemental biographical information on National Public Radio. It also meant more to me this time because I've had close personal encounters with individuals in the last five years who were selfish and/or self-destru I don't think I've ever ready anything by Kerouac, but this was the second time I've read this biography from my personal library. Coincidentally I read it this time when the 50th anniversary of the publishing of his On the Road was being noted in the media, and so I heard a lot of supplemental biographical information on National Public Radio. It also meant more to me this time because I've had close personal encounters with individuals in the last five years who were selfish and/or self-destructive hedonists, and so now better understood that mindset.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Steven

    Excellent, intimate look at Kerouac's adult life. Nicosia's biography is richer, with more information and analysis of each of Kerouac's books. Where Charters succeeds is in giving us a vivid portrait of the tragedy of Jack Kerouac's life - a masterful, groundbreaking writer whose influence can still be felt, and the deeply flawed man. Jack Kerouac was Beat in both senses of the word. He was beaten down, crushed by his shyness and self doubts, as well as the pressures of being a celebrity. He wa Excellent, intimate look at Kerouac's adult life. Nicosia's biography is richer, with more information and analysis of each of Kerouac's books. Where Charters succeeds is in giving us a vivid portrait of the tragedy of Jack Kerouac's life - a masterful, groundbreaking writer whose influence can still be felt, and the deeply flawed man. Jack Kerouac was Beat in both senses of the word. He was beaten down, crushed by his shyness and self doubts, as well as the pressures of being a celebrity. He was also beatific, always dreaming, always hopeful.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Karolina

    I would have given it more stars, if I hadn't read "Memory Babe". If you're looking for a brief overview of Kerouac's life, Charter's book will suit you just fine. If you're really interested in the beat generation, Kerouac and his work get the biography written by Nicosia. I would have given it more stars, if I hadn't read "Memory Babe". If you're looking for a brief overview of Kerouac's life, Charter's book will suit you just fine. If you're really interested in the beat generation, Kerouac and his work get the biography written by Nicosia.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Karolina

    "In Lowell, Kerouac's grave still has no marker. Not that he would have cared. His books are evidence of his presence, the young Jack still alive on his pages to rush on to the next adventure so long as there are people who read the Legend of Duluoz." ❤️ "In Lowell, Kerouac's grave still has no marker. Not that he would have cared. His books are evidence of his presence, the young Jack still alive on his pages to rush on to the next adventure so long as there are people who read the Legend of Duluoz." ❤️

  11. 4 out of 5

    Anna Ligtenberg

    I've always reviewed books for semi-business-like reasons, but the ones I really love, own? Never. THAT felt a bit like... these are my friends, let's talk about strangers! Suddenly, I'd like to review my way through my own shelves before I die... and since I'm accident prone and living alone for the first time in eons... it seems like death by tripping down the stairs on the ragged hem of a pair of jeans... seems like that could be right around the corner, some days. Yep... Bob Dylan and Jack K I've always reviewed books for semi-business-like reasons, but the ones I really love, own? Never. THAT felt a bit like... these are my friends, let's talk about strangers! Suddenly, I'd like to review my way through my own shelves before I die... and since I'm accident prone and living alone for the first time in eons... it seems like death by tripping down the stairs on the ragged hem of a pair of jeans... seems like that could be right around the corner, some days. Yep... Bob Dylan and Jack Kerouac, back to back, they just bring out my sunny side, don't they? I'm gonna need something like Is Elvis Alive?, some Joey Ramone... maybe Krassner's Pot Stories next or I might kill myself before my jeans get around to it. I first read a teeny tiny bit of this book (not this edition, of course...) when I found it in (and stole it from) my mom's dresser when I was in 8th grade. Then my dad spotted it and flipped his shit for reasons then unknown. As a picture of Kerouac, and even moreso of the times, I love this book. Learn a thing or two, see something from a new angle... add a new shadow or light to the picture you already have... Books that do that make me happy, and this one does a nice job of that but... and I hate to say this because I'm usually not the type to write an entire review based on something NOT in the book... but when I read that the first edition was rejected by the family, apparently for the claim that Jack's sister committed suicide, I was... more turned off this book than I like to admit. Either the suicide story was true, and a carefully protected family secret... or Charters got it so damned wrong because her personal connection to Kerouac - the thing, outside of Jack himself, that made this book of special interest - was perhaps a wee bit flimsier than advertised. In either of those cases, that made everything else... potentially suspect, one way or another. Also entirely possible - the whole "rejected first edition" story was bullshit... No matter which was the truth, I started looking at Charters' book with wary suspicion. Sometimes the Internet is like one big fat douchebag tattletale. Boo. The book is more than readable. It's really quite well done - other than a couple weird lapses in writing style - and I don't expect infallible from anyone... but if it comes down to a fight for space, I do believe that Nicosia's Memory Baby will shove Charters off the shelf in a heartbeat. Lucky for her, I'm just getting started and may forget my annoyance by the time I start winnowing for space.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Craig Rowland

    I acquired Kerouac: A Biography by Ann Charters over thirty years ago after I saw the author appear on the TVOntario show “Imprint”, which at that time was hosted by Daniel Richler. How I loved that show, which featured intelligent discussions about books with the host and three other literary figures (usually authors, naturally) sitting around a small round table. Charters appeared on an episode about the Beats. I was so taken in by her reminiscences of Kerouac that I called up Abelard Books, a I acquired Kerouac: A Biography by Ann Charters over thirty years ago after I saw the author appear on the TVOntario show “Imprint”, which at that time was hosted by Daniel Richler. How I loved that show, which featured intelligent discussions about books with the host and three other literary figures (usually authors, naturally) sitting around a small round table. Charters appeared on an episode about the Beats. I was so taken in by her reminiscences of Kerouac that I called up Abelard Books, a longtime antiquarian and retail bookseller at Yonge and Collier in Toronto, to order this biography. This was at a time before the Internet and Amazon existed, so if customers wanted a book, they had to call up a bookstore to order it for them. And, so typical of my retail book habits, I buy a book and then leave it unread for years, or in this case, over three decades. As I commemorate Jack Kerouac during his centenary year I am finally reading all of my books by or about Kerouac that I have not yet read.This particular edition was published in a large font, which made it a gentle read for my weak eyesight. The text filled the entire page, as the top and side margins were minimal. I didn’t mind the solid bricks of text as long as I could easily read them. Even though this was my fourth Kerouac biography and the third one I have read this year, I did not find this to be a tedious read, as one might expect with a rapid turnover of biographies about the same person. Charters told Kerouac’s story as if the reader was in the same room with him witnessing the events first-hand. This was especially true as we sat with Kerouac in the 1960’s, wasting himself on port wine. I couldn’t even stand it, reading how he drank himself to death as his wife and mother did nothing. Sometimes they even drank themselves to sleep right along with him.Charters herself had met Kerouac and been to his house as she worked to prepare a definitive Kerouac bibliography, and it was her personal memories of him that I liked best in the entire book, although I had to wait until page 350 (of 367) to read them (not that I’m complaining). Charters clearly charmed him as a scholar and not as one of many who randomly showed up at his door looking to get drunk with him. She stayed for dinner–Jack merely drank scotch and beer and ate potato chips–and was even allowed to take a few photos. The part about her trying to sneak out of the Kerouac house for the first time will have you in stitches, although it probably terrified Charters at the time:“He scowled at me, ‘I won’t let you back in here tomorrow if you don’t spend the night with me.’ There was no real menace in the threat, his loneliness unmistakable as he desperately tried different ways to get me to stay.”This biography wasn’t published until 1973, four years after Kerouac’s death. It has earned the reputation of being one of the best Kerouac biographies, and, after reading four of them, it definitely deserves the praise heaped upon it. Another reason for such praise is the second appendix on notes and sources, where Charters documented every book, interview, letter and phone conversation she used, not merely as a list of references, but attached stories to each one. Her timeline on the entire Kerouac oeuvre was a fascinating chart in the third appendix. It organized each book chronologically by the date each specific work took place in Kerouac’s life versus by the year the work was written or the year it was published. There was a spiderweb of overlap in regards to when Kerouac wrote about each part of his life and when it was eventually published. This will enable the reader to follow the Duluoz Legend book by book, regardless of publication date. The fourth appendix was an identity key that identified the various pseudonyms Kerouac used for his friends in his novels. They often had different names in different works, but not always.This particular biography has been of great help by providing the most detailed background for Kerouac’s novels. In regards to the ones that I own which I still haven’t read, I would have read them by date of publication had I not known about Charters’s biographical chronology. I will now read them based on how they fit within the Duluoz Legend, which seems the way Kerouac would have wanted it.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Bryan Duffy

    Will tell you every little secret you did and didnt want to know about Kerouac. Warning, you might not like the guys persona after reading it. Youll respect him more as a writer...but youll find some things about him that you may not have found in his novels.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jason Evans

    I realize you think you know all about Jack's life because that is what he mainly writes about, right? Not so fast my friend! Ann takes you behind the scenes, the real stories and Jack's maniacal writing sessions, fast and frenzied. Good read for Kerouac fans. I realize you think you know all about Jack's life because that is what he mainly writes about, right? Not so fast my friend! Ann takes you behind the scenes, the real stories and Jack's maniacal writing sessions, fast and frenzied. Good read for Kerouac fans.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Grant

    a good critical work about kerouac's life and writing. gets under the public and mythic persona that has developed. a good critical work about kerouac's life and writing. gets under the public and mythic persona that has developed.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jeff

    My favorite bio on Dulouse! Charter gets her info right as far as I know, and she did get to work with him before he died. And I like Charter's style...lays it down, very readable. My favorite bio on Dulouse! Charter gets her info right as far as I know, and she did get to work with him before he died. And I like Charter's style...lays it down, very readable.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Harriett Milnes

    enjoyable, easy to read, sad at the end.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Joseph Cochran

    Definitive Biography of one of the greatest writers of all time. Kudos to Charters on the Research

  19. 4 out of 5

    Don Clark jr

    this is a Kerouac biography that I revisit at least once a year. Ann Charters gives me a glimpse into a world I can only wish I had been born early enough to witness firsthand.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Marley

    One of the great bios I've read. One of the great bios I've read.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Emile

    Jack Kerouac is a holy romantic vagabond wanderer who inspired masses of youths to leave their homes and set out across America in search of life. Ann Charters was one such youth. Jack's life was short and sad and full of wonder. This is what keeps us reading him today. Charters does a great job of bringing the man alive on these pages. Using Kerouac's novels, poems, notes, letters, tape recordings as well as her own experiences of working with him, Charters talks us through everything that made Jack Kerouac is a holy romantic vagabond wanderer who inspired masses of youths to leave their homes and set out across America in search of life. Ann Charters was one such youth. Jack's life was short and sad and full of wonder. This is what keeps us reading him today. Charters does a great job of bringing the man alive on these pages. Using Kerouac's novels, poems, notes, letters, tape recordings as well as her own experiences of working with him, Charters talks us through everything that made this man who he is. Anyone who is reading this book is likely a fan of Jack Kerouac already, so I would say don't waste any time and pick up this book! Charters understands the man, his work, his mission, but also and perhaps most importantly she inhabits a lineal position very much on the fringes of 'Beat' circles, thus she offers an unbiased, outsiders perspective on the life, work and times of this man, while also having the unique ability to understand, synchronise and explain information and events in a way very few others are able to do. There is no better voice to bring this to the reader than hers. She captures the sadness, the magic, the rhythm, the blues of his life, and the wanderlust that made Kerouac who he is. A wonderful, moving portrayal of the life of the 'King of the Beats' (I hope he wouldn't mind me using that term).

  22. 4 out of 5

    Allen

    I fell in love with On the Road, then The Dharma Bums, then Big Sur, then his poetry, then things here and there. Kerouac was my go-to. I thought I knew him like an old friend, "ol' reliable." And then I read this biography by Ann Charters, which gave me an entirely different perspective on the life and times of my beloved Kerouac. I'll be honest, it's a hard pill to swallow at times. There are things about Kerouac's life and behavior that are hard to come to terms with after having revered him I fell in love with On the Road, then The Dharma Bums, then Big Sur, then his poetry, then things here and there. Kerouac was my go-to. I thought I knew him like an old friend, "ol' reliable." And then I read this biography by Ann Charters, which gave me an entirely different perspective on the life and times of my beloved Kerouac. I'll be honest, it's a hard pill to swallow at times. There are things about Kerouac's life and behavior that are hard to come to terms with after having revered him and his writing for so long. With that said, though, this biography is extremely enlightening and eye-opening. I now feel that I now Kerouac differently, but I feel like our writer-reader relationship is stronger than ever. If nothing else, I now understand that Kerouac was human like the rest of us. He had his trials and tribulations and hardships and disappointments, and he also had his triumphs, his victories, his climaxes. No doubt a must-read for any Kerouac aficionado.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Bertie

    Magnificent. It would be hard to write a book about Jack Kerouac that isn't interesting to be honest, but I feel Ann Charters does a fantastic job here. I was entertained throughout the whole book, even though at times Mr Kerouac's life was seriously dragging... The author never dwindles on a topic or segment of his life for too long, and the story skips along and gives us all the great juicy gossip that is Jacks life from the age of four to his death, and boy did I learn a thing or too about Ja Magnificent. It would be hard to write a book about Jack Kerouac that isn't interesting to be honest, but I feel Ann Charters does a fantastic job here. I was entertained throughout the whole book, even though at times Mr Kerouac's life was seriously dragging... The author never dwindles on a topic or segment of his life for too long, and the story skips along and gives us all the great juicy gossip that is Jacks life from the age of four to his death, and boy did I learn a thing or too about Jack (and his friends). Top drawer, full marks.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Kenylm

    3.5 / Really enjoyed reading this. Gave me a good idea of Kerouac's life to understand his works better and the time he lived in. Charters knew him so what she wrote seems more realistic and accurate than biographies of people just studying his works. I also really liked that its not just about him but also his friends and the people who influenced him. She doesn't conceal his bad characteristics though not giving a subjective opinion about them e.g. denying child support and care for his childr 3.5 / Really enjoyed reading this. Gave me a good idea of Kerouac's life to understand his works better and the time he lived in. Charters knew him so what she wrote seems more realistic and accurate than biographies of people just studying his works. I also really liked that its not just about him but also his friends and the people who influenced him. She doesn't conceal his bad characteristics though not giving a subjective opinion about them e.g. denying child support and care for his children

  25. 5 out of 5

    Charles Willmott

    From free spirit to conservative. Great overview of Jack's life, especially the identity key so you know who's who when reading his books. Shame how boring his life became once he was famous, living with mum, abandoning his friends and losing his days to alcohol. He's like the opposite of Charles Bukowski. From free spirit to conservative. Great overview of Jack's life, especially the identity key so you know who's who when reading his books. Shame how boring his life became once he was famous, living with mum, abandoning his friends and losing his days to alcohol. He's like the opposite of Charles Bukowski.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Erica Basnicki

    If I have one complaint it’s that this book was obviously written by a fan. It’s a great book, and I learned a lot and appreciate Kerouac’s dedication to writing even more having read it. I just wonder if it lacks a bit of objectivity, but that’s a very minor issue.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Fireflydances

    Good in-depth read on the life of Jack Kerouac.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Christopher

    An excellent biography. Perfect to take to the beach and read passages out loud to friends. which is what I did.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Guy Salvidge

    Kinda skimmed over this. Not sure why I felt the need to read a second Kerouac biography after Jack's Book, really. Kinda skimmed over this. Not sure why I felt the need to read a second Kerouac biography after Jack's Book, really.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Charles Cuthill

    Great, thoroughly researched book. Cassidy, Ginsberg, Kerouac are all brought to life. These were wild and interesting writers at the peak of their abilities in the conservative 40's and 50's. Great, thoroughly researched book. Cassidy, Ginsberg, Kerouac are all brought to life. These were wild and interesting writers at the peak of their abilities in the conservative 40's and 50's.

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