BURN DOWN THE NIGHT by Craig Kee Strete


Email this review


An autobiographical novel"" about Strete's drug/sex/oh-wow-heavy '60s palship with Jim Morrison--before Jim became a rock star or a burnt-out fatality. And, except for an occasional rueful laugh, it's a numbingly dreary account, heavy on pseudo-poetry, gross-outs, maudlin confessions, and misogyny. Nearly half the book covers just one party night: Strete, tripping on acid, meets Morrison at an L.A. bash (""Intense rap sessions of bodies beyond words""); the two become instant soulmates, head for another party (""Let's go, menstruation mouth""), and pick up to girls on the way (Strete gets stuck with the fat one--""She looks like the place where Moby was Dicked!""); some nasty gang-bang games ensue; Strete has sex with assorted foul women; Morrison delivers some of his credos; they pass out in the bushes. Then there's a flashback to Strete's unhappy childhood as a Cherokee orphan, his teenage crimes and life as a fugitive with a rock band. Back in the present, we get a glimpse of Strete's live-in relationship with spacey Tamara, then more hijinks with Jim: quasi-rape in a graveyard, with Strete falling in instant love with the rape-ee . . . who turns out to be ""cold and evil."" And finally, after other kinky women (a literal St. Bernard-lover), a dead cop, and some rock touring, the ever-betrayed Tamara quite sensibly commits suicide--and Strete is last seen weeping together with her cat: ""We share the same broken heart."" A few funny moments (Strete's sf/fantasy collection, If All Else Fails, was full of talent)--but, despite the hard-working, telegraphic, imagistic narration: a freaked-out bore, only for Morrison groupies.

Pub Date: June 3rd, 1982
Publisher: Warner