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Call Me Burroughs: A Life Hardcover – January 28, 2014

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Imported from USA

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*Starred Review* Born to wealth and respectability in St. Louis, William Seward Burroughs (1914–97) relied
on his parents’ support until his fifties, while submerged in an underworld of drugs and crime. His risky misadventures
in New York, Chicago, Mexico City, Texas, New Orleans, London, Paris, and Tangiers stoked his incendiary, innovative,
and influential books, including Naked Lunch (1959) and Cities of the Red Night (1981). On the centennial of Burroughs’
birth, accomplished biographer Miles turns in a torrentially detailed, explicit, and dramatic chronicle of Burroughs’
wild life as outlaw, social critic, writer, performer, and artist. Guru to the Beats, the counterculture, punk rockers,
and cyberpunk writers, Burroughs was a walking paradox, a radical who dressed like a bureaucrat, a fierce advocate of
freedom chained to his addictions. Though homosexual, he married a German Jew while in Europe during Hitler’s ascent,
saving her life, then later accidentally killed his second wife. Miles illuminates every facet of Burroughs’ life, from
his passions for guns and the occult to his depthless hunger for drugs and boys, visual and audio art, and crucial
friendships with Allen Ginsberg and artist Brion Gysin. Nomadic Burroughs finally settled down in Lawrence, Kansas,
thanks to James Grauerholz, who managed Burroughs’ famed reading tours and exhibits and gathered much of the arresting
material Miles uses so powerfully in this forthrightly definitive biography. --Donna Seaman

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"The Burroughs of Miles's 600-plus pages is both ghastlier and more impressive than previous models,
sliding through the world like a cross between Sam Spade and Flat Stanley."'―The Atlantic

"CALL ME BURROUGHS is riddled with... weird anecdotes laced with gallows humor, bizarre coincidences and profane punch
lines. It's a massive undertaking made complicated by Burroughs' peripatetic lifestyle and rampant drug use. To say he
was a difficult man to pin down is understatement, but Miles is up to the task."―LA Times

"Miles just puts it all on paper with aplomb and deadpan wit, showing how the gross-out surrealism of Burroughs's
fiction flowed from the lurid creativity of everyday life."―Publisher's Weekly (Starred Review)

"One long, strange, profoundly American literary life. Burroughs's work has had a profound if often oblique influence on
the writing of his century and this one. I can scarcely imagine what it would be like to read Barry Miles's biography
without being thoroughly familiar with the outline of the narrative. Truly, stranger than fiction."―William Gibson

"CALL ME BURROUGHS takes us deeply inside the magical life of the great writer. Miles's decision to tell the epic story
through William Burroughs's search for his 'Ugly Spirit' makes for sensational reading. Brilliant, tragic,
controversial, and inspiring, CALL ME BURROUGHS is a beautiful work."―Victor Bockris, author of With William Burroughs:
A Report from the Bunker, Conversations with William Burroughs and Andy Warhol, and Burroughs in the Bunker

"CALL ME BURROUGHS is the most intimate portrait to date of one of the twentieth century's most complicated, troubled,
and influential figures. Miles's deep knowledge of the man and the work also provides a cultural history of the scene in
Tangiers in the 1950s, the Beat era, and the emerging Punk scene in New York in the 1980s. It is a compelling biography
and social history unlike any other."―Ira Silverberg, co-editor of Word Virus: The William S. Burroughs Reader

"CALL ME BURROUGHS is full of energy and surprise and is a delight to read. Barry Miles combines his intimate knowledge
of Burroughs with the meticulous research of Burroughs's companion James Grauerholz, to produce an extremely accurate,
readable, and entertaining biography of one of the most inventive writers of the twentieth century. Reading this
extraordinary book is like hanging around with Burroughs himself and is impossible to forget."―Bill Morgan, author of I
Celebrate Myself: The Somewhat Private Life of Allen Ginsberg and The Typewriter Is Holy

"By any standard Burroughs's was an unusual life, full of scandal, subversion, and sensitivity hidden behind a cold blue
gaze. Miles enriches this 'life of an artist' with decades of dedicated immersion in the work both published and
unpublished, digging deep into archival material and manuscripts, incorporating journals of friends and acquaintances.
With great authority and verve, he brings up to date the legacy of a true American original who grows, even years after
his death, in fascination."―Regina Weinreich, author of Kerouac's Spontaneous Poetics and editor of Kerouac's Book of

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