Junky by Burroughs

Discussion in 'Beat and Hippie Books' started by Alexandria, May 29, 2004.

  1. Alexandria

    Alexandria Member

    JUNKY by william burroughs? I am borrowing this book from a friend and before I get all into it, I was wandering if it is a good read or an easy read? And what the basic premise of this book is. Yeah, any info would be great. THANKS :)
  2. Django

    Django Member

    Hi! I just read 'Junky' by William S. Burroughs (foreword by Allen Ginsburg)

    Wow! what a book. I really enjoyed it, though I'm sure that's the wrong way of phrasing a satisfaction from gaining knowledge over a subject I previously wasn't familiar with: the life of drug dependence, to an altogether new degree.

    Could be a cautionary tale, could be a call to arms, could be a manifesto, call it what you will; I found this a very insightful book. Now saying something is an insightful writing of anything would usually mean I would have to have first hand knowledge to be able to verify the reliability, but it's written with so much emotion and with a kind of exhausted wit and resonance that I felt I'd lived Bill Burroughs junk filled daze in some infinitesimally small way.

    Unfortunately I'm a bit open to influence, but I'll fight the urge to go out, load up on Benzedrine, speedballs and shoot codeine.

    I can really see where some of the contemporary literature finds it's foundations in this book. [SPOILER of a sort] From the traversal of the country toward the inexorable exile in Mexico[End of spoiler :)], to the shady dealings with semi-lucid and non-linear hallucinations, fuelled by "grain" after grain of "junk".

    This is no glamorisation. This is an account of a very tortured soul's existence from within the "cap", the "syrette" and the "popper".

    Certainly makes me think.
  3. dementedana

    dementedana Member

    i also enjoyed that book
    i picked it up on day in a book store while i was waiting for someone and i couldnt put it down

    although, its a sad situation that i have often been around people who are drug dependant... and by that i mean- dependant on everything from junk to crack to perscription shit to cough medicine and so on.. :confused:
    my friend went out the other day and turned a shade of blue ive never seen..
    i thought he was going to die
  4. Django

    Django Member

    That's such a shame for him. I hope he gets better, though through reading this book it doesn't exactly cast the most positive of outlooks! Still, I beleive in everyone's power and ability to use their will to conquer anything affecting their life.

    Perhaps I'm naive, perhaps I'm juvenile, but if it means that there's a way of getting over nasty man-made "treats" then I'm all for that philosophy :)

    I've known a couple of people who were completely addicted to speed, as well having gone through being a person who couldn't wake up without alcohol, but never to the stage described in this book, whereby ANYTHING must be taken to 'take the edge off'.

    as the book states,

    "Junk is not like alcohol or weed, a means to increased enjoyment of life. Junk is not a kick. It is a way of life."

    Take care dana, I hope your friend gets better
  5. staples420

    staples420 Member

    I also thought this was an excellent, insightful book. It really gave me a new outlook on addictions.
  6. dementedana

    dementedana Member

    i appreciate your input
    its nice to find other resonable human life on this internet trap:rolleyes:
  7. Godot

    Godot Member

    This is one the best books i've ever read; and i've read it more times than I can count. It reallly helped to crush the image of the steryotypical narcotics addict (read the original preface from the first edition). I can say without hyperbole that this book changed my life.
  8. granola.kiss

    granola.kiss Member

    I read Junky about 3 years ago. I loved it & the weirdest thing happened. About a week or 2 after finishing it, it was a late night & my friends Derek, Jennie & I had just smoked a bowl & were chilling in my living room...all of a sudden, the movie comes on! Freaked me out...same thing happened later that summer when I finished a Bukowski & saw "Barfly" on a random channel really late at night...weird.

    Glad you liked it!

  9. God

    God Member

    its a great fucking book. my favorite part was where he was being chased by that cop in the subway, and he ran, tossing away his morphine caps in the cig pack. that part was real intense.
  10. BlackBillBlake

    BlackBillBlake Hip Forums Supporter HipForums Supporter

    Junky is a great intro to WSB's work, but was written at a time before he'd really found the style and technique that was to lead to 'naked lunch' and all of Burroughs subsequent great work.As a book on opiate addiction though, its only rival in my opinion is Thomas de Quincy's 'Confessions of an English Opium Eater'
  11. buffaloroad

    buffaloroad Member

    now i've got to find that book. on the same subject but different medium- Have you seen "Trainspotting"? How does it compare with the Burrough's story?
  12. Pressed_Rat

    Pressed_Rat Do you even lift, bruh?

    It's a good book.
  13. BlackBillBlake

    BlackBillBlake Hip Forums Supporter HipForums Supporter

    Trainspotting is ok, but WSB is in another league altogether.
  14. worldhealer

    worldhealer Member

    My favorite Burroughs book is the Yage letters . . . letters he wrote to Allen Ginsberg about his experiences with Ayahyasca -- fascinating stuff
  15. Shockw4ve

    Shockw4ve Member

    I've read it, own it, and think it's wonderful. However I wouldn't say that it's an easy read. Once you read it you'll realize just how unique Burroughs' style is. If you really like Junky, then I would recommend that you read Naked Lunch next.
  16. hiro

    hiro pursue it

    I read half of the book because it was a difficult read.

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