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Charles Bukowski: Locked in the Arms of a Crazy Life

Howard Sounes

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9780802136978: Charles Bukowski: Locked in the Arms of a Crazy Life

A former postman and long-term alcoholic who did not become a full-time writer until middle age, Charles Bukowski was the author of autobiographical novels that captured the low life--including Post Office, Factotum, and Women--and made him a literary celebrity, with a major Hollywood film (Barfly) based on his life. Drawing on new interviews with virtually all of Bukowski's friends, family, and many lovers; unprecedented access to his private letters and unpublished writing; and commentary from Norman Mailer, Allen Ginsberg, Sean Penn, Mickey Rourke, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, R. Crumb, and Harry Dean Stanton, Howard Sounes has uncovered the extraordinary true story of the Dirty Old Man of American literature. Illustrated with drawings by Bukowski and over sixty photographs, Charles Bukowski is a must for Bukowski devotees and new readers alike. As the Los Angeles Times noted, "Bukowski is one of those writers people remember more for the legend than for the work....but, as Howard Sounes shows in this exhaustively researched biography, it wasn't the whole story."

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From the Inside Flap:

Charles Bukowski--onetime bum, long-term alcoholic, and author of such now-classic novels as Post Office, Factotum, and Women--rose from obscurity to become world famous. His semi-autobiographical books about low-life America made him a cult figure and culminated in the making of Barfly, a Hollywood film based on his life. In this, the first major biography of Bukowski, Howard Sounes has drawn on years of exhaustive research-including new interviews with virtually all of Bukowski's friends, his family, and his many lovers, as well as unprecedented access to his private letters and unpublished writing-to reveal the extraordinary true story of the Dirty Old Man of American literature.

Illustrated with over sixty never-before-published photographs, Charles Bukowski: Locked in the Arms of a Crazy Life also includes original drawings by Bukowski and unique contributions by friends, including Norman Mailer, Allen Ginsberg, Sean Penn, Mickey Rourke, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, R. Crumb, and Harry Dean Stanton. Interspersed with telling excerpts from Bukowski's poetry and prose, including work that has never been published, Charles Bukowski: Locked in the Arms of a Crazy Life is a must for Bukowski devotees and new readers alike.

"Bukowski is one of those writers people remember more for the legend than for the work...but, as Howard Sounes shows in this exhaustively researched biography, it wasn't the whole story."--Los Angeles Times

"Engaging...adroit...revealing."--The New York Times Book Review

"Howard Sounes does an admirable job of re-creating Bukowski's journey through the underground passages of the American literary landscape."--Sarasota Herald-Tribune

"A must-read for anybody who is a fan of Bukowski's writing, Howard Sounes successfully conjures up the voice of this outrageous character and offers clear-eyed insight into his extraordinary life."--The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

"Excellent.... A fast-paced narrative and a great read."--Minneapolis City Pages

"Howard Sounes writes with wit and compassion about this irascible wild man of American letters."--Judith Wynn, Boston Herald

"Charles Bukowski: Locked in the Arms of a Crazy Life is a generous tribute to Bukowski's genius and it clearly and truthfully captures the essence of Bukowski both as writer and man."--John Martin, Black Sparrow Press (Bukowski's editor)

"With no shortage of anecdotes, pictures or big names, this [biography] is so thorough and sharp that it may as well be the last."--Graham Caveney, Arena

"A remarkable account of the poet laureate of Skid Row's bedeviled sojourn on planet Earth."--Iain S. Bruce, The Glasgow Herald

"This is the first in-depth biography of Bukowski and succeeds by pulling into focus the hazy image of the apocryphal barfly anti-hero...a picaresque read."--Nick Wyke, The Times (London)

"Wonderful...the first such serious and thorough Bukowski biography.... An excellent book about a remarkable man."--Ross Fortune, Time Out

"A fine storyteller, descriptive and visual, Sounes sticks with the stuff that made Bukowski a legend."--Tulsa Kinney, LA Weekly

"A lively portrait of American literature's 'Dirty Old Man.'"--William Gargan, Library Journal

"The man who emerges from Sounes's work is one who shamelessly pursued his needs for beer, women and recognition--a man capable of tenderness, who always paid child support for his daughter and who resisted the seductions of belated, relished fame. This biography is an affectionate and thorough introduction that will not be rivaled for quite some time. Its effect is to revitalize rather than reduce Bukowski's work: poems and stories that help keep people alive."--Guy Mannes-Abbott, The Independent

Howard Sounes was born in England in 1965 and currently lives in London. He has worked as a newspaper journalist in Britain and abroad and is currently at work on a biography of Bob Dylan.

About the Author:

Howard Sounes was born in England in 1965 and currently lives in London. He has worked as a newspaper journalist in Britain and abroad and is the author of Fred & Rose, the best-selling book about the lives and crimes of mass murderers Fred and Rosemary West.

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

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