Mick Brown

American Grotesque

The Joke's Over: Memories of Hunter S Thompson


William Heinemann 396pp £20 order from our bookshop

In 1997, passing through Louisville, Kentucky, the artist Ralph Steadman paid a visit to the mother of his friend Hunter Thompson. Steadman and Thompson had been collaborators and sparring partners for more than twenty-five years but it was the first time that Steadman had met Virginia Thompson. Mrs Thompson was then in her nineties and living in a rest home. ‘I pushed open the door’, Steadman writes, ‘and diametrically opposite from me, across the room, sat a tall, handsome, big-boned lady in a Lazy Boy chair with a king-sized filter tip in her hand and a freshly poured bourbon in front of her on what looked like a drinks trolley zimmerframe’.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • Sign up to our email newsletter below! Get free articles, highlights from the archive, and chances to win theatre… ,
    • RT : Founded in 1979, is a trusted independent source for reviews of new books across a variety of genres. A… ,
    • RT : Here we are - "Shelf Indulgence" by Ed Potten, a wonderful read, well worth your time: @Lit_Review,
    • 'Like going to a party hoping to get away as quickly as politeness allowed and at 4am finding myself still engrosse… ,
    • 'Neville never shed his sense of being the junior, and perhaps least-deserving Chamberlain.' From the archive, Mic… ,
    • 'The erecting and immediate destruction of a series of straw men rather detracts from what is for the most part an… ,
    • RT : A magnificent demolition job on this "acid laced tirade...unpleasantly self-obsessed...self pitying polemic...book… ,