THE LAST MUSEUM by Brion Gysin


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A fantastical and nearly inaccessible last novel from the late Gysin, who was a friend of and collaborator with William S. Burroughs, and who here appears to be re writing Naked Lunch. The narrator, PG Six, has just inherited the notorious Beat Hotel in Paris, where the real beats like Ginsberg and Kerouac and the boys used to stay so many years ago. Now, however, it's renamed the Hotel Bardo (after the Bardo Thodol--the Tibetan Book of the Dead), and PG Six intends to dismantle it and move it to Malibu, room by room, as a kind of museum. But PG Six soon comes to the disturbing realization that he has been killed in an accident, and that this whole scene is, like, the afterlife, man. What had been an amusing and possibly enlightening idea for a novel swiftly degenerates after this point into a kind of torrid surrealism, as PG Six travels the hotel floor by floor and room by room, navigating the troubled waters between Death and Rebirth (as in the Book of the Dead). What he Finds instead are chain-swinging lesbians on motorcycles, nymphomaniacs, cute little boys, much buggery, and crazed doctors straight out of Naked Lunch: ""With one rubber-gloved fist up your ex-asshole and the other plunging down through a nine-inch incision from your sternum to your shaved pubis, they gleefully shook hands with each other in the depths of your belly."" After more of the same for a hundred pages or so, Gysin comes to the conclusion that ""a story like this can have no happy ending."" Derivative, obscure, and filled with in-jokes from another era.

Pub Date: Jan. 9th, 1986
Publisher: Grove