THE ELECTRIC KOOL-AID ACID TEST

Promethean prose poet Wolfe. . . One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest and never-ever-never-would-come-could-come down Ken Kesey. . . . A head combination if there ever was one. Kesey was "The Chief," pre-Haight, pre-Hippy, the floating plastic fantastic West Coast apostle of the impossible who so ordained that LSD was the KEY!!! and put together a band of Merry Pranksters whose name became synonymous with the freak-out of all life-styles. This is the story of how Kesey almost became God and wow-why-not-he-was-was-into-every-thing with Mountain Girl and Gretchen Fetchen the Slime Queen and the Hermit and Black Maria and Ned Cassady (who first appeared On the Road and won't Kerouac get the jealous bends over this trip) and Freewheeling Frank (Yes!. . . he's the one on the Grove list) and Owsley (mad and paranoid manufacturer of the sacrament) and just all those near and now famous. And didn't he create the psychedelic bus with sound and strobe and just vats of Day-Glo and blow those work-a-daddy minds all the way across country with the pranksters zonked on acid and speed and tokes and all the while makin' this spontaneous here and Now movie for miles and miles. . . and didn't he invite the HeWs Angels to a party that had the cops and community up-tight all right. . . and didn't he start the Acid tests and bonk out all the straights on electric Kool-Aid and wasn't he busted and didn't he escape to Mexico and come back as What Else "Captain Marvel." And Wolfe trips along until the Cuckoo's grounded. . . a sorry, sad, sordid head-ache. But a mad master portrait for Wolfe.

Pub Date: Aug. 19, 1968

ISBN: 031242759X

Page Count: 436

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 1968

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KILLERS OF THE FLOWER MOON

THE OSAGE MURDERS AND THE BIRTH OF THE FBI

Dogged original research and superb narrative skills come together in this gripping account of pitiless evil.

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Greed, depravity, and serial murder in 1920s Oklahoma.

During that time, enrolled members of the Osage Indian nation were among the wealthiest people per capita in the world. The rich oil fields beneath their reservation brought millions of dollars into the tribe annually, distributed to tribal members holding "headrights" that could not be bought or sold but only inherited. This vast wealth attracted the attention of unscrupulous whites who found ways to divert it to themselves by marrying Osage women or by having Osage declared legally incompetent so the whites could fleece them through the administration of their estates. For some, however, these deceptive tactics were not enough, and a plague of violent death—by shooting, poison, orchestrated automobile accident, and bombing—began to decimate the Osage in what they came to call the "Reign of Terror." Corrupt and incompetent law enforcement and judicial systems ensured that the perpetrators were never found or punished until the young J. Edgar Hoover saw cracking these cases as a means of burnishing the reputation of the newly professionalized FBI. Bestselling New Yorker staff writer Grann (The Devil and Sherlock Holmes: Tales of Murder, Madness, and Obsession, 2010, etc.) follows Special Agent Tom White and his assistants as they track the killers of one extended Osage family through a closed local culture of greed, bigotry, and lies in pursuit of protection for the survivors and justice for the dead. But he doesn't stop there; relying almost entirely on primary and unpublished sources, the author goes on to expose a web of conspiracy and corruption that extended far wider than even the FBI ever suspected. This page-turner surges forward with the pacing of a true-crime thriller, elevated by Grann's crisp and evocative prose and enhanced by dozens of period photographs.

Dogged original research and superb narrative skills come together in this gripping account of pitiless evil.

Pub Date: April 18, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-385-53424-6

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Doubleday

Review Posted Online: Feb. 1, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2017

NIGHT

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

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