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Junky By William S. Burroughs

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Before his 1959 breakthrough Naked Lunch an unknown William S Burroughs wrote Junky his first novel It is a candid eye witness account of times and places that are now long gone an unvarnished field report from the American post war underground Unafraid to portray himself in 1953 as a confirmed member of two socially despised under classes a narcotics addict and a homosex. ”Morphine hits the backs of the legs first then the back of the neck a spreading wave of relaxation slackening the muscles away from the bones so that you seem to float without outlines like lying in warm salt water As this relaxing wave spread through my tissues I experienced a strong feeling of fear I had the feeling that some horrible image was just beyond the field of vision moving as I turned my head so that I never uite saw it I felt nauseous; I lay down and closed my eyes A series of pictures passed like watching a movie A huge neon lighted cocktail bar that got larger and larger until streets traffic and street repairs were included in it; a waitress carrying a skull on a tray; stars in a clear sky The physical impact of the fear of death; the shutting off of breath; the stopping of blood” William S Burroughs shortly after shooting his wife Joan Vollmer in the head during a drunken version of William Tell Were you just drunk Bill or were you on junk tooBack in January of 2013 I decided to reread Naked Lunch I hadn’t read Burroughs since college so the dim memories of the first read had very little impact on the second reading It was like a virgin reading Burroughs for the very first time again Readers have a wide range of opinions about Naked Lunch lurching from the ecstatic high of one of the best books they have ever read to believing the book to be perverted garbage Burroughs would be thrilled with either reactions because that is what the book is about creating a reaction It is probably one of the most creative books I’ve read but also a book that freuently made me very uncomfortable So given the success of my second reading of Naked Lunch I decided to read Burroughs first published work Junky British title or Junkie American title Burroughs insisted for a long time in calling the book Junk but the publisher refused to put that label on the book believing that the American public might actually believe it to be just thatjunk Allen Ginsberg is the reason the book even exists He’d been in correspondence with Burroughs and had been impressed by how intelligent and fascinating Bill’s letters were proving to be Ginsberg insisted that Burroughs needed to thread his life from those letters into a book Allen Ginsberg the man who was determined to see Junky in printThus begins the odyssey of JunkJunkyJunkie trying to make it into print ”H and coke You can smell it going in”Bill Lee starts off selling a few caps to make some extra money He has a small habit but nothing than recreational use It is under control like going to see a movie once in a while or going out for a really good meal Dealers even small scale dealers like Bill soon start to see the desperation of having a full blown habit ”Doolie sick was an unnerving sight The envelope of personality was gone dissolved by his junk hungry cells Viscera and cells galvanized into a loathsome insect like activity seemed on the point of breaking through the surface His face was blurred unrecognizable at the same time shrunken and tumescent” Burroughs shooting upWe all know someone odd someone living an alternative bohemian lifestyle someone floating in a constant haze of pharmaceutical diversion but most of us know maybe one or two people that would fit that definition Bill starts to know so many people that match that profile that it becomes normal ”What a crew Mooches fags four flushers stool pigeons bums unwilling to work unable to steal always short of money always whining for credit In the whole lot there was not one who wouldn’t wilt and spill as soon as someone belted him in the mouth and said “Where did you get it”And that is exactly what happens Bill gets picked up and it soon becomes apparent that a conviction is imminent What was jamming Bill up was the Harrison Act of 1914 It was a tax meant to regulate the market but was interpreted by the law as a way to prohibit the sale of opiates William Burroughs’s uncle Horace committed suicide just days after the act was passed He was addicted to morphine the result of several medical procedures and he couldn’t face the thought of living without the necessary solace of the drug A good lawyer gets Bill bail based on his good family name and Bill knowing he can’t handle jail heads for Mexico Due to stress or just having the ready access to drugs soon has him becoming a full time junky When he is on junk his sex drive is diminished but when he is off the junk his libido becomes as all consuming as getting his next fix ”Angelo’s face was Oriental Japanese looking except for his copper skin He was not ueer and I gave him money; always the same amount twenty pesos Sometimes I didn’t have that much and he would say ‘No importa’ It does not matter He insisted on sweeping the apartment out whenever he spent the night thereOnce I connected with Angelo I did not go back to the Chimu Mexico or stateside ueer bars brought me down”Bill likes boys but he also likes girls wellpros like Mary ”It you really want to bring a man down light a cigarette in the middle of intercourse Of course I really don’t like men at all sexually What I really dig is chicks I get a kick out of taking a proud chick and breaking her spirit making her see she is just an animal A chick is never as beautiful after she’s been broken ‘Say this is sort of a fireside kick’ she said pointing to the radio which was the only light in the room”Both scenariosVintage Burroughs An Ace Original published in 1953 Burroughs made one cent on each copy sold The book now sells in shabby condition for 450 and in collector’s condition for over a 1000 So after a lot of arm twisting Ginsberg finally convinces the owner of Ace Books A A Wyn to publish Junkie Wyn didn’t like the book but his son Carl Solomon had done a stint with Ginsberg in a psychiatric hospital in New Jersey and was also lobbying hard for the book to be published There is a good lesson to be learned here always use every opportunity to make new connections whether you are in a loony bin or attending an upscale cocktail party You may find the same people both placesGinsberg had the thankless job of editing the book and being the middleman between a disgruntled publisher and a and recalcitrant Burroughs Ginsberg was soon the only person in the euation that even cared if the book made it to print Finally his dream is realized and the book is published as a paperback original Ace Double or what we used to call in the book biz a 69 The other book on the flip side was Narcotic Agent by Maurice Helbrant which was a nonfiction account of busting drug dealers Burroughs was at first furious at the pairing but after reading the Helbrant book he grudgingly admitted it wasn’t too bad It is impossible to separate William S Burroughs from Bill Lee William Lee was his pen name and the name under which he published this book The writing style in Junky is not anything like Naked Lunch This book is very accessible honestly told and graphically realistic You will meet a cast of characters with names like George the Greek Pantopon Rose Louie the Bellhop Eric the Fag the Beagle the Sailor and Joe the Mex You will come away from reading this book believing you have a better idea of Burroughs the man He lived it and he didn’t pull any punches about what it means to be an addict ”When you uit junk everything seems flat but you remember the shot schedule the static horror of junk your life draining into your arm three times a day Every time exactly that much less “Being on junk is like resting in the arms of a beautiful woman but if you stay on it too long those arms become withered and instead of looking into the face of angel you find yourself staring into the face of a toothless crone I’m hearing about this new kick called Yage Yage may be the final fix”If you haven't read my Naked Lunch review it is actually not too bad Naked Lunch Review If you wish to see of my most recent book and movie reviews visit also have a Facebook blogger page at La France des Mosquées places that are now long gone an unvarnished field report from the American L'Exégèse coranique post war underground Unafraid to Pourquoi j'ai cessé d'être islamiste : Itinéraire au cœur de l'islam en France (Mise au point) portray himself in 1953 as a confirmed member of two socially despised under classes a narcotics addict and a homosex. ”Morphine hits the backs of the legs first then the back of the neck a spreading wave of relaxation slackening the muscles away from the bones so that you seem to float without outlines like lying in warm salt water As this relaxing wave spread through my tissues I experienced a strong feeling of fear I had the feeling that some horrible image was just beyond the field of vision moving as I turned my head so that I never uite saw it I felt nauseous; I lay down and closed my eyes A series of Le livre des indésirés pictures L'Islam en France : Les musulmans dans la communauté nationale passed like watching a movie A huge neon lighted cocktail bar that got larger and larger until streets traffic and street repairs were included in it; a waitress carrying a skull on a tray; stars in a clear sky The Les religions africaines physical impact of the fear of death; the shutting off of breath; the stopping of blood” William S Burroughs shortly after shooting his wife Joan Vollmer in the head during a drunken version of William Tell Were you just drunk Bill or were you on junk tooBack in January of 2013 I decided to reread Naked Lunch I hadn’t read Burroughs since college so the dim memories of the first read had very little impact on the second reading It was like a virgin reading Burroughs for the very first time again Readers have a wide range of opinions about Naked Lunch lurching from the ecstatic high of one of the best books they have ever read to believing the book to be La politique musulmane de la France au XXe siècle : De l'Hexagone aux terres d'Islam - Espoirs, réussites, échecs perverted garbage Burroughs would be thrilled with either reactions because that is what the book is about creating a reaction It is Entre Islam et Occident.: Entretiens avec G. D.Khoury. probably one of the most creative books I’ve read but also a book that freuently made me very uncomfortable So given the success of my second reading of Naked Lunch I decided to read Burroughs first Louis Massignon (TEMPUS t. 414) published work Junky British title or Junkie American title Burroughs insisted for a long time in calling the book Junk but the L'Islam positif. La religions des jeunes musulmans de France publisher refused to XXI N° 6, PRINTEMPS 2009 : Dans le bleu de l'Islam put that label on the book believing that the American Islam, l'épreuve française (TRIBUNE LIBRE) public might actually believe it to be just thatjunk Allen Ginsberg is the reason the book even exists He’d been in correspondence with Burroughs and had been impressed by how intelligent and fascinating Bill’s letters were Le Droit musulman proving to be Ginsberg insisted that Burroughs needed to thread his life from those letters into a book Allen Ginsberg the man who was determined to see Junky in Profession Imam : Entretiens avec Michaël Privot et Cédric Baylocq printThus begins the odyssey of JunkJunkyJunkie trying to make it into L'Islam contemporain print ”H and coke You can smell it going in”Bill Lee starts off selling a few caps to make some extra money He has a small habit but nothing than recreational use It is under control like going to see a movie once in a while or going out for a really good meal Dealers even small scale dealers like Bill soon start to see the desperation of having a full blown habit ”Doolie sick was an unnerving sight The envelope of L'Islam contemporain personality was gone dissolved by his junk hungry cells Viscera and cells galvanized into a loathsome insect like activity seemed on the Cités 2003, hors série : L'Islam en France point of breaking through the surface His face was blurred unrecognizable at the same time shrunken and tumescent” Burroughs shooting upWe all know someone odd someone living an alternative bohemian lifestyle someone floating in a constant haze of Traité d'athéologie : Physique de la métaphysique pharmaceutical diversion but most of us know maybe one or two La Sexualité en Islam people that would fit that definition Bill starts to know so many L'Islam en France people that match that Marianne et le prophète : L'Islam dans la France laïque profile that it becomes normal ”What a crew Mooches fags four flushers stool Islam et christianisme pigeons bums unwilling to work unable to steal always short of money always whining for credit In the whole lot there was not one who wouldn’t wilt and spill as soon as someone belted him in the mouth and said “Where did you get it”And that is exactly what happens Bill gets La France en danger d'islam : Entre Jihâd et Reconquista picked up and it soon becomes apparent that a conviction is imminent What was jamming Bill up was the Harrison Act of 1914 It was a tax meant to regulate the market but was interpreted by the law as a way to Imams de France prohibit the sale of opiates William Burroughs’s uncle Horace committed suicide just days after the act was Dictionnaire historique de l'islam passed He was addicted to morphine the result of several medical Les Réseaux d'Allah : Les filières islamistes en France et en Europe procedures and he couldn’t face the thought of living without the necessary solace of the drug A good lawyer gets Bill bail based on his good family name and Bill knowing he can’t handle jail heads for Mexico Due to stress or just having the ready access to drugs soon has him becoming a full time junky When he is on junk his sex drive is diminished but when he is off the junk his libido becomes as all consuming as getting his next fix ”Angelo’s face was Oriental Japanese looking except for his copper skin He was not ueer and I gave him money; always the same amount twenty Islam en France, Islam de France (Le Point sur l'immigration en France) pesos Sometimes I didn’t have that much and he would say ‘No importa’ It does not matter He insisted on sweeping the apartment out whenever he spent the night thereOnce I connected with Angelo I did not go back to the Chimu Mexico or stateside ueer bars brought me down”Bill likes boys but he also likes girls wellpros like Mary ”It you really want to bring a man down light a cigarette in the middle of intercourse Of course I really don’t like men at all sexually What I really dig is chicks I get a kick out of taking a L'Islam proud chick and breaking her spirit making her see she is just an animal A chick is never as beautiful after she’s been broken ‘Say this is sort of a fireside kick’ she said Allah a-t-il sa place dans l'entreprise ? pointing to the radio which was the only light in the room”Both scenariosVintage Burroughs An Ace Original Les religions de l'Antiquité published in 1953 Burroughs made one cent on each copy sold The book now sells in shabby condition for 450 and in collector’s condition for over a 1000 So after a lot of arm twisting Ginsberg finally convinces the owner of Ace Books A A Wyn to Islam de France (Documents) publish Junkie Wyn didn’t like the book but his son Carl Solomon had done a stint with Ginsberg in a L'Islam contemporain psychiatric hospital in New Jersey and was also lobbying hard for the book to be Les musulmans en France published There is a good lesson to be learned here always use every opportunity to make new connections whether you are in a loony bin or attending an upscale cocktail La démocratie en danger : L'enseignement islamiste saoudien party You may find the same L'Islam de France sera libéral : Entretiens people both La Jeunesse iranienne : Une génération en crise placesGinsberg had the thankless job of editing the book and being the middleman between a disgruntled Martin Bucer (1491-1551) : Un réformateur et son temps publisher and a and recalcitrant Burroughs Ginsberg was soon the only Le Corps en Islam person in the euation that even cared if the book made it to Penser l'islam dans la laïcité : Les musulmans de France et la République print Finally his dream is realized and the book is L'Orient d'une vie published as a Vocabulaire de l'Islam paperback original Ace Double or what we used to call in the book biz a 69 The other book on the flip side was Narcotic Agent by Maurice Helbrant which was a nonfiction account of busting drug dealers Burroughs was at first furious at the L'islam et les musulmans en France: Perceptions, craintes et réalités pairing but after reading the Helbrant book he grudgingly admitted it wasn’t too bad It is impossible to separate William S Burroughs from Bill Lee William Lee was his Le patient musulman : Guide pratique pen name and the name under which he Une grenade entrouverte (Monde en cours) published this book The writing style in Junky is not anything like Naked Lunch This book is very accessible honestly told and graphically realistic You will meet a cast of characters with names like George the Greek Pantopon Rose Louie the Bellhop Eric the Fag the Beagle the Sailor and Joe the Mex You will come away from reading this book believing you have a better idea of Burroughs the man He lived it and he didn’t L'islam en France pull any France et Islam — Je t'aime, moi non plus: Petites Chroniques, T22 punches about what it means to be an addict ”When you uit junk everything seems flat but you remember the shot schedule the static horror of junk your life draining into your arm three times a day Every time exactly that much less “Being on junk is like resting in the arms of a beautiful woman but if you stay on it too long those arms become withered and instead of looking into the face of angel you find yourself staring into the face of a toothless crone I’m hearing about this new kick called Yage Yage may be the final fix”If you haven't read my Naked Lunch review it is actually not too bad Naked Lunch Review If you wish to see of my most recent book and movie reviews visit also have a Facebook blogger Chronique de France asservie page at

READ & DOWNLOAD ç E-book, or Kindle E-pub Ý William S. Burroughs

Ngly recreated the author's original text word by word from archival typescripts and places the book's contents against a lively historical background in a comprehensive introduction Here as well for the first time are Burroughs' own unpublished introduction and an entire omitted chapter along with many lost passages as well as auxiliary texts by Allen Ginsberg and others. I listened to the audiobook on YouTube There are two different audiobooks one read by the author and one read by David Carradine The reader is not credited in the YouTube video but I'm guessing it's the author He has a raspy voice but it works well for the reading This was my first time reading anything from the beat generation unless you count Charles Bukowski who came along a little later I tried reading some Jack Kerouac things and didn't get into them right away so I moved on to this Kerouac's stuff seemed to be about drinking and chasing women which I had read a lot about already in Bukowski's novels In fact there's very little mention of women boys only in Junky at all Heroin seems like an interesting topic for a beat author considering how addictive it is the lifestyle associated with it things people are willing to do to get it what the highs and withdrawals feel like and the process of forming a habit I'm sure this book was influential and there are a lot of books with this content today but one thing that made this book great was the time period in which it was written demonstrating the cultural zeitgeist There's a lot of hipster slang like stool pigeon and lush worker used in the book There's also homosexuality which was taboo at the time I appreciate that authors like Burroughs and James Baldwin had the courage to write about such topics What appeals to and surprises me about a lot of books from this era are how relevant they still are today Mariage et liberté: Étude comparative entre le droit français, tunisien et musulman places the book's contents against a lively historical background in a comprehensive introduction Here as well for the first time are Burroughs' own unpublished introduction and an entire omitted chapter along with many lost FIGARO (LE) [No 4167] du 29/01/1958 - anastasia, grande-duchesse ou aventuriere par aucleres - loi-cadre algerie adoptee en seconde lecture a l'assemblee par gabilly le droit de greve et la fonction publique hebergement par ravon la citrouille , satellite de l'armee us serait lancee cette semaine par sauvage operations de police chez les etudiants musulmans de paris important jaillissement de petrole dansle sahara oriental - une ombre par guehenno conference du pacte de bagdad jacques guerard passages as well as auxiliary texts by Allen Ginsberg and others. I listened to the audiobook on YouTube There are two different audiobooks one read by the author and one read by David Carradine The reader is not credited in the YouTube video but I'm guessing it's the author He has a raspy voice but it works well for the reading This was my first time reading anything from the beat generation unless you count Charles Bukowski who came along a little later I tried reading some Jack Kerouac things and didn't get into them right away so I moved on to this Kerouac's stuff seemed to be about drinking and chasing women which I had read a lot about already in Bukowski's novels In fact there's very little mention of women boys only in Junky at all Heroin seems like an interesting topic for a beat author considering how addictive it is the lifestyle associated with it things Droit musulman : du statut personnel et des successions d'après les différents rites, (Éd.1895) people are willing to do to get it what the highs and withdrawals feel like and the Droit musulman - Des successions: D'après les différents rites, et plus particulièrement d'après le rite hanafite process of forming a habit I'm sure this book was influential and there are a lot of books with this content today but one thing that made this book great was the time Ramadan rariq - Les musulmans dans la laïcité responsabilités et droits des musulmans dans les sociétés occidentales deuxième édition period in which it was written demonstrating the cultural zeitgeist There's a lot of hipster slang like stool Contingency in a Sacred Law: Legal and Ethical Norms in the Muslim Fiqh pigeon and lush worker used in the book There's also homosexuality which was taboo at the time I appreciate that authors like Burroughs and James Baldwin had the courage to write about such topics What appeals to and surprises me about a lot of books from this era are how relevant they still are today

William S. Burroughs Ý 9 READ

Ual Burroughs was writing as a trained anthropologist when he unapologetically described a way of life in New York New Orleans and Mexico City that by the 1940's was already demonized by the artificial anti drug hysteria of an opportunistic bureaucracy and a cynical prostrate media For this fiftieth anniversary edition eminent Burroughs scholar Oliver Harris has painstaki. I think I prefer looking at this text in its original light a sensationalized dime store paperback about junkies I just can't take this type of work too seriously I've met so many people who hail Burroughs as genius and I have yet to find out why While he offers a grisly account of opiate addiction it's hard for me to say that Junky is an important piece of literature It spawned many copy cat memoirs and was influential to the genre of confessional fiction which I find to be overrated Contingency in a Sacred Law: Legal and Ethical Norms in the Muslim Fiqh prostrate media For this fiftieth anniversary edition eminent Burroughs scholar Oliver Harris has Fondamentalismes, intégrismes : Une menace pour les droits de l'homme painstaki. I think I Etude Sur La Theorie Du Droit Musulman, Volume 1 - Primary Source Edition prefer looking at this text in its original light a sensationalized dime store Le contrat d'entreprise en droit arabe: cas de l'Égypte: avec les dispositions des principaux codes arabes en différentes langues paperback about junkies I just can't take this type of work too seriously I've met so many Observance des Droits de Dieu (l') people who hail Burroughs as genius and I have yet to find out why While he offers a grisly account of opiate addiction it's hard for me to say that Junky is an important L'Empire ottoman et l'Europe (TEMPUS t. 697) piece of literature It spawned many copy cat memoirs and was influential to the genre of confessional fiction which I find to be overrated


10 thoughts on “Junky By William S. Burroughs

  1. says:

    ”Morphine hits the backs of the legs first then the back of the neck a spreading wave of relaxation slackening the muscles away from the bones so that you seem to float without outlines like lying in warm salt water As this relaxing wave spread through my tissues I experienced a strong feeling of fear I had the feeling that some horrible image was just beyond the field of vision moving as I turned my head so that I never uite saw it I felt nauseous; I lay down and closed my eyes A series of pictures passed like watching a movie A huge neon lighted cocktail bar that got larger and larger until streets traffic and street repairs were included in it; a waitress carrying a skull on a tray; stars in a clear sky The physical impact of the fear of death; the shutting off of breath; the stopping of blood” William S Burroughs shortly after shooting his wife Joan Vollmer in the head during a drunken version of William Tell Were you just drunk Bill or were you on junk too?Back in January of 2013 I decided to reread Naked Lunch I hadn’t read Burroughs since college so the dim memories of the first read had very little impact on the second reading It was like a virgin reading Burroughs for the very first time again Readers have a wide range of opinions about Naked Lunch lurching from the ecstatic high of one of the best books they have ever read to believing the book to be perverted garbage Burroughs would be thrilled with either reactions because that is what the book is about creating a reaction It is probably one of the most creative books I’ve read but also a book that freuently made me very uncomfortable So given the success of my second reading of Naked Lunch I decided to read Burroughs first published work Junky British title or Junkie American title Burroughs insisted for a long time in calling the book Junk but the publisher refused to put that label on the book believing that the American public might actually believe it to be just thatjunk Allen Ginsberg is the reason the book even exists He’d been in correspondence with Burroughs and had been impressed by how intelligent and fascinating Bill’s letters were proving to be Ginsberg insisted that Burroughs needed to thread his life from those letters into a book Allen Ginsberg the man who was determined to see Junky in printThus begins the odyssey of JunkJunkyJunkie trying to make it into print ”H and coke You can smell it going in”Bill Lee starts off selling a few caps to make some extra money He has a small habit but nothing than recreational use It is under control like going to see a movie once in a while or going out for a really good meal Dealers even small scale dealers like Bill soon start to see the desperation of having a full blown habit ”Doolie sick was an unnerving sight The envelope of personality was gone dissolved by his junk hungry cells Viscera and cells galvanized into a loathsome insect like activity seemed on the point of breaking through the surface His face was blurred unrecognizable at the same time shrunken and tumescent” Burroughs shooting upWe all know someone odd someone living an alternative bohemian lifestyle someone floating in a constant haze of pharmaceutical diversion but most of us know maybe one or two people that would fit that definition Bill starts to know so many people that match that profile that it becomes normal ”What a crew Mooches fags four flushers stool pigeons bums unwilling to work unable to steal always short of money always whining for credit In the whole lot there was not one who wouldn’t wilt and spill as soon as someone belted him in the mouth and said “Where did you get it?”And that is exactly what happens Bill gets picked up and it soon becomes apparent that a conviction is imminent What was jamming Bill up was the Harrison Act of 1914 It was a tax meant to regulate the market but was interpreted by the law as a way to prohibit the sale of opiates William Burroughs’s uncle Horace committed suicide just days after the act was passed He was addicted to morphine the result of several medical procedures and he couldn’t face the thought of living without the necessary solace of the drug A good lawyer gets Bill bail based on his good family name and Bill knowing he can’t handle jail heads for Mexico Due to stress or just having the ready access to drugs soon has him becoming a full time junky When he is on junk his sex drive is diminished but when he is off the junk his libido becomes as all consuming as getting his next fix ”Angelo’s face was Oriental Japanese looking except for his copper skin He was not ueer and I gave him money; always the same amount twenty pesos Sometimes I didn’t have that much and he would say ‘No importa’ It does not matter He insisted on sweeping the apartment out whenever he spent the night thereOnce I connected with Angelo I did not go back to the Chimu Mexico or stateside ueer bars brought me down”Bill likes boys but he also likes girls wellpros like Mary ”It you really want to bring a man down light a cigarette in the middle of intercourse Of course I really don’t like men at all sexually What I really dig is chicks I get a kick out of taking a proud chick and breaking her spirit making her see she is just an animal A chick is never as beautiful after she’s been broken ‘Say this is sort of a fireside kick’ she said pointing to the radio which was the only light in the room”Both scenariosVintage Burroughs An Ace Original published in 1953 Burroughs made one cent on each copy sold The book now sells in shabby condition for 450 and in collector’s condition for over a 1000 So after a lot of arm twisting Ginsberg finally convinces the owner of Ace Books A A Wyn to publish Junkie Wyn didn’t like the book but his son Carl Solomon had done a stint with Ginsberg in a psychiatric hospital in New Jersey and was also lobbying hard for the book to be published There is a good lesson to be learned here always use every opportunity to make new connections whether you are in a loony bin or attending an upscale cocktail party You may find the same people both placesGinsberg had the thankless job of editing the book and being the middleman between a disgruntled publisher and a and recalcitrant Burroughs Ginsberg was soon the only person in the euation that even cared if the book made it to print Finally his dream is realized and the book is published as a paperback original Ace Double or what we used to call in the book biz a 69 The other book on the flip side was Narcotic Agent by Maurice Helbrant which was a nonfiction account of busting drug dealers Burroughs was at first furious at the pairing but after reading the Helbrant book he grudgingly admitted it wasn’t too bad It is impossible to separate William S Burroughs from Bill Lee William Lee was his pen name and the name under which he published this book The writing style in Junky is not anything like Naked Lunch This book is very accessible honestly told and graphically realistic You will meet a cast of characters with names like George the Greek Pantopon Rose Louie the Bellhop Eric the Fag the Beagle the Sailor and Joe the Mex You will come away from reading this book believing you have a better idea of Burroughs the man He lived it and he didn’t pull any punches about what it means to be an addict ”When you uit junk everything seems flat but you remember the shot schedule the static horror of junk your life draining into your arm three times a day Every time exactly that much less “Being on junk is like resting in the arms of a beautiful woman but if you stay on it too long those arms become withered and instead of looking into the face of angel you find yourself staring into the face of a toothless crone I’m hearing about this new kick called Yage Yage may be the final fix”If you haven't read my Naked Lunch review it is actually not too bad Naked Lunch Review If you wish to see of my most recent book and movie reviews visit also have a Facebook blogger page at


  2. says:

    Well holy shit high five to you early teens me Though I may have mixed feelings about some things I loved back in my formative pointlessly cynical years this rereading experience was actually well kinda rad Can I say that at almost 30? Rad? Or am I getting to where it's like when your folks n' grandfolks try to uote the hip lingo of the kids these days and it enters your brain like aural chipboard? This novel held up is my point Maybe I'm just an asshole probable but Burroughs makes me laugh in this bitter fuck it all sort of way that's fairly therapuetic when not indulged in to excess If I let it go too far and didn't try to temper it down with at least a little bit of sunshine I'd perhaps end up all drunken rendition of Bela Lugosi in some shitty apartment just hating stuff It's important to keep your dose low ya know? Still Burroughs knows how to utilize the English language particularly descriptive metaphor in a manner both extremely hilarious and sharply visual Also he knows exactly what a junky looks like the how the why and the rationalization processes behind their behavior when they are engaged in that special weasely droney junky non charm to an extent which leads me to believe he kept his mirror pretty clean most of the time I mean the mirror he looked at himelf in not thenever mindFor those of you who've never met a dope addict there are also some amusing and astutely descriptive scenes involving a period when our protagonist tries to get off the junk by assuming a regiment of absurdly excessive alcohol abuse You've known a drunk before right? Once he goes off his rocker and starts finding himself a recurrent troublemaking fool his once supportive friends start telling him he should maybe think about uitting the booze and going back to the needle for his own sake and for their own collective sanity Somehow Ole Willy's self deprecatingly accurate descriptions of his drunken blackout behavior and experiences with cyclical hangover induced mental torture when compared with the very real dangers of morphine addiction leads to a comically black lesser of two evils type of fork in the road Wait did he just make me laugh talking about that? Did he just talk himself back into drug addiction because it's less outlandish than being a raging alcoholic? Yes people totally think like that when they're all strung out Ha Oh Papa BillI would suggest reading this again if it's been a while I was surprised anew by Burroughs's dirty poetry I think I'll reread some very soon


  3. says:

    “I have learned the cellular stoicism that junk teaches the user I have seen a cell full of sick junkies silent and immobile in separate misery They knew the pointlessness of complaining or moving They knew that basically no one can help anyone else There is no key no secret someone else has that he can give you” Junky was a concise yet vivid account of heroin addiction delineated by someone who’d actually lived the life Though the book was often bleak it never degraded itself by indulging in self pity or tearful sentimentality In fact its subtle dry humor crackled and even spit occasional sparks Overall it was honest lucid and powerful Burroughs already evinced uite a bit of genuine skill and talent in this his very first novel


  4. says:

    Less flouncyconvoluted and realistic? than Naked Lunch or ueer True masterpieces these Oddly straightforward espesh for a first novel it valiantly emerges as some sort of sad recounting of events in all their incendiary yet undoubted existence So brave so brave coming out as gay; but for a literary juggernaut the honest truth of drug addiction MUST be depicted that Truth is the passport to the future glories the aforementioned novels Articulate clear headedness here not including however the stooge like attitude which is adopted by Burroughs as he detoxifies sporadically through the years definitely accentuates the entire experience it seems to me Burroughs is an event you cannot avoid its literary personal worthThe brain tries to find meaning in the junkie limbo Junky is a survival story; some night long brutal anecdote of one hellish past Here avant gardism is found in the Motley Crew of malcontents users pushers rehab ers robbers victims victims vic an encyclopedic index of sorts Novel in Lexicon See Dictionary of the Khazars M Pavic Burroughs is indeed the true King of the Beats ya know the dudes who hardly ever mentioned their wives in their self important exploits And I am than satisfied by the concrete truth


  5. says:

    Mmm mmm drugs Yummy Like adult smarties with extra kick and an added naughty factorOk that is not strictly true but you have to admit that sometimes it is difficult to pick your way through the troubled and varied history of drugs culture in literature Drugs good? Drugs bad? Drugs indifferent? You're cool Or not cool Or an addict or a victim See? Confusing Lets look back through the literature Coleridge De uincey Kerouac Thompson and the production of wondrous drugs madness such as Fear and Loathing and Trainspotting see there's never really been a great poster child for hardcore drug addiction and not many happy endings aside from the ones which involve selling yourself on the street to get cash for your hash and even then it's not your happy ending but someone elsesPersonally the imbibing of large uantities of narcotics has never made it on to my priorities list never mind been anywhere near the top of it The way I see it the world is suitably weird enough already without trying to work out what the fuck is going on through a haze of chemicals I have enough problems on a good day even when I used to use caffeine and nicotine as my fuel of choice things were confusingannoyinginexplicable and that was just the people I had to interact with Maybe I'm interacting with the wrong people? Possibly I did used to work with someone who enjoyed the heady combination of taking Speed and driving very large bits of dangerous machinery this was his actual job he didn't just nip out and steal it Amusing to watch but you always needed to be at least 50m away to safely observe this without getting your head removed from your shoulders and conversation was not ever on the menu well not in any sensible format anywayBurroughs on the other hand manages to present his Junky lifestyle in a nice lucid epistolary format Which is probably a pretty good indication that he wasn't high as kite when he wrote a lot of this Is that cheating? He manages to get across the hapless seedy chancer side of his existence which is on the surface a rootless one which sees him drift from place to place with an motley assortment of characters who are all intent on scoring Junk or any other chemicals which will help stave off the Junk craving This rootlessness does seem to be a bit of a sham though because half way through we get the after thought mentioning of his family back home Yup Mrs B and the kids are back home waiting for pops to turn up Now much like when I read Kerouac if I'd read this as a 15 year old too I'd have been all hells yeah do what you want and don't be pinned down by convention As someone of double that age I re read Kerouac and though hmmm you're a bit of a dick really aren't you Similar thoughts passed through my head about Burroughs at this point Burroughs does try to get clean at several points in the story and always fails spectacularly to stay on the wagon but he is very sanguine about this and he doesn't attempt to glamorize drug use Being strung out and scrabbling about in the streets filching off fellow addicts is not a recommended way of life but it does make for excellent reading


  6. says:

    I think I prefer looking at this text in its original light a sensationalized dime store paperback about junkies I just can't take this type of work too seriously I've met so many people who hail Burroughs as genius and I have yet to find out why While he offers a grisly account of opiate addiction it's hard for me to say that Junky is an important piece of literature It spawned many copy cat memoirs and was influential to the genre of confessional fiction which I find to be overrated


  7. says:

    I read this while in rehab so as you can imagine it held a very special place in my heart This is a crazy self indulgent occasionally offensive defence of the junkie lifestyle The author never really managed to break free from his addiction and despite his hatred for all things government and society died dependent on govt administered methadone It's unapologetic It's hilarious And when you finish the book you can't help but be struck by the tragedy of addiction despite the crazy ride you just enjoyedWhat I loved about this was that it was a real addict describing their experiences in very fuck off with your sympathy and your judgement terms I hate the modern poverty porn obsession where middle aged white women spend all their time reading tear jerkers about sexually abused kids and recovering junkies These stories take real experiences and they tell lies with it It's unbearable for anyone who has actually experienced it and it promotes stereotypes that are harmful This book does none of that It also doesn't make drug abuse look cool A modern day euivalent might be Bojack Horseman if Bojack wasn't filthy rich I loved it And it's super short so if you don't like it you haven't wasted much time with it


  8. says:

    I absolutely adore Burroughs' prose; but I just couldn't find any space where I could insert myself in the book It'll certainly appeal a lot to those who have struggled with drug addiction; but I just couldn't get much out of it


  9. says:

    I listened to the audiobook on YouTube There are two different audiobooks one read by the author and one read by David Carradine The reader is not credited in the YouTube video but I'm guessing it's the author He has a raspy voice but it works well for the reading This was my first time reading anything from the beat generation unless you count Charles Bukowski who came along a little later I tried reading some Jack Kerouac things and didn't get into them right away so I moved on to this Kerouac's stuff seemed to be about drinking and chasing women which I had read a lot about already in Bukowski's novels In fact there's very little mention of women boys only in Junky at all Heroin seems like an interesting topic for a beat author considering how addictive it is the lifestyle associated with it things people are willing to do to get it what the highs and withdrawals feel like and the process of forming a habit I'm sure this book was influential and there are a lot of books with this content today but one thing that made this book great was the time period in which it was written demonstrating the cultural zeitgeist There's a lot of hipster slang like stool pigeon and lush worker used in the book There's also homosexuality which was taboo at the time I appreciate that authors like Burroughs and James Baldwin had the courage to write about such topics What appeals to and surprises me about a lot of books from this era are how relevant they still are today


  10. says:

    This could be the best anti drug book ever written It is certainly the odd boy out in the Burroughs family of novelsThis is not the William S Burroughs of The Wild Boys A Book of the Dead Burroughs William S and certainly not the same guy who wrote Naked Lunch The Restored Text This is a Burroughs who's not talking to himself or talking to his admirers Instead this an author who is stretching to reach the reader with the actual smelly lonely desperate empty reality of the junkyIt's a reality that Burroughs has explored in his fiction and that he has occasionally mined for characters and atmosphere But nowhere not even in Exterminator has he come as close to offering up this direct if bleak conversation with the reader It's worth noting that outside the world of book lovers this may be his most well known work because it does such a stark and effective job of describing the day to day world as it's experienced by the junkyLynn Hoffman author of the somewhat different bang BANG A Novel