Naked Lunch: The Restored Text

Naked Lunch: The Restored Text

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Naked Lunch: The Restored Text by William S. Burroughs, Mark Bramhall

Naked Lunch is one of the most important novels of the twentieth century, a book that redefined not just literature but American culture. An unnerving tale of a narcotics addict unmoored in New York, Tangiers, and ultimately a nightmarish wasteland known as Interzone, its formal innovation, formerly taboo subject matter, and tour de force execution have exerted their influence on the work of authors like Thomas Pynchon, J. G. Ballard, and William Gibson; on the relationship of art and obscenity; and on the shape of music, film, and media generally. Naked Lunch: The Restored Text includes many editorial corrections to errors present in previous editions, and incorporates Burroughs's notes on the text, several essays he wrote over the years about the book, and an appendix of 20 percent new material and alternate drafts from the original manuscript, which predates the first published version. For the Burroughs enthusiast and the neophyte, this volume is a valuable and fresh experience of this classic of our culture.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781433259654
Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Publication date: 02/01/2009
Edition description: Unabridged
Pages: 7
Product dimensions: 6.50(w) x 6.20(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

William S. Burroughs (1914–1997) was the author of numerous novels, including Nova Express, The Ticket That Exploded, The Soft Machine, and The Wild Boys, and was a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

James Grauerholz was Burroughs’s longtime secretary and editor.

Barry Miles has been involved for years with Beat literature as a scholar and participant. Among his books are The Beat Hotel and biographies of Allen Ginsberg, William S. Burroughs, and Jack Kerouac.

Mark Bramhall studied acting at Harvard, the University of California at Berkeley, the American Conservatory Theatre, and at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art as a Fulbright scholar. He has starred in numerous West Coast stage productions and has played featured roles in such television series as Alias, NYPD Blue, and The X-Files.

Date of Birth:

February 4, 1914

Date of Death:

August 2, 1997

Place of Birth:

St. Louis, Missouri

Place of Death:

Lawrence, Kansas


Los Alamos Ranch School; A.B., Harvard University, 1936; graduate study, 1938

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Naked Lunch 3.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 67 reviews.
FocoProject More than 1 year ago
Forget you ever read a book in your life. All the standards and rules and everything you have read up to this point, just toss it out the window because it will do you absolutely no good when reading this book. In fact, it will probably be detrimental. This is probably the most difficult book I have ever read. Literally. I sat down and read five pages. I put the book down and realized I had no idea what was going on. Sure that I must have missed something, I went back and read again. About twelve pages in, I again realized I was not getting it. Frustrated I put it away.

I started the book from the beginning three days later. I got to the part where I kept stopping and realized, there is no way I am going to force this book to make sense. So I had to shift a little, and make myself give in to the book instead, which for me is relatively uncomfortable. And yet, only in that manner was I able to sink into this hellish book.

If I were to describe this book in one line, it would include the words trip, crazy, troubling and edgy accompanied by a handful of expletives scattered around for good measure.

Once you give in to the book, prepare yourself to go on one of the most disturbing, surrealistic, humorous, perverted, unbelievable rides of your life. Take ¿Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas¿ and multiply it times four.

As a point of warning, this book is NOT for the average reader. It demands an open mind, because it deals with drugs, alcohol, substance abuse, sexuality, homosexuality and science fiction in very explicit ways. VERY. Though not overtly descriptive in a lot of cases, this book does have some scenes that will make the tamer side of the crowd cringe. It is not every day that an author describes a characters fright, by picturing him pissing and defecating all over himself. It is not every day that an author tells the story about a man that teaches his bonghole to talk. It does not make sense, it is not supposed to. The world that this author describes, which is at times in Mexico, Tangiers and the Interzone, is one that can not really be described as anything other than one massive sex, drug and violence trip.

Furthermore, sentences come at you broken and the story jumps from one scene to the next without following any rational thought. It is no secret that a lot of this was written while the author was under the influence and it shows. At times disgusting, twisted and at other times incredibly humorous, this book is going to test all literary conventions.

Armed with a collection of memorable characters such as junkies that believe themselves to be secret agents, or unscrupulous doctors that have absolutely no ethics¿this explosive book, is like a bullet, hard hitting and unforgiving. It will likely offend most readers in one way or another. But if you can find it within yourself to take yourself a bit more lightly, you may just enjoy it.

Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I can honestly say that until today I had never read a book that has made me gag, laugh, and cringe in pain uncontrollably over and over again. No one who is at all narrow minded will enjoy the book as well as most who consider themselves open minded. Let me say that I think just about every review I have read is exaggerating in one extreme or another. This is not trash that should be burned and never read by anyone. But it is also not a masterpiece, and obviously some people read way to much into it. The book definitely has a message (although it is hard to find) and it is new, fresh, and challenging. The book is no doubt extremely important and to a degree revolutionary but to say that it changed American culture is definitely a stretch.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is not for the faint of heart. It is not one those happy books that you can read before you go to bed. It is a dark journey through addiction and madness. It is a brilliant book that can never be replicated. It is a must read. It is a must own.
malignant_madness More than 1 year ago
I'll admit, Naked Lunch (as well as Junky and the rest of Burroughs' books) are NOT for everybody. In my opinion you either love his work or you hate it. I am one of those who love him and can't get enough of his writng. I've already reccomended this book many times over the years and still reread it a few times a year.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Wonderful weird flake consistancy world half-life stillness. This book is like no other. The sentences are disjointed and the words are jumbled--all on purpose to give you the feel of a heroin addict taking notes. And it works. A book that changed the course of literature. Parts are extremely disturbing. Parts are beautiful. Take the journey.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Graphic material hard to follow at best! Wouldn't recommend if you are disturbed by nasty imagery! Book should have a 18 years and up reader rating, lol!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
For my English Assignment I had to read a book and write review about it, I chose Naked Lunch the Restored Text. I have to agree it redefine American Culture, the book addicts you like William S. Burroughs was addicted to narcotics. He had written down mostly everything he had gone through while on the influence of drugs.  It made me go to a totally different world, at some points I didn’t know whether I should laugh or scream. Don’t get me wrong it is a good thing because in a world of happiness you’re always going to need pain.  This has to be one of my favorite books. I really enjoy sort of the side notes (if that’s what you call them) in text. The reason I read was because it was in the banned book list and I am rebel.  It was probably banned for every conceivable way a book should be banned, but who really cares.  If I were to recommend this to anyone it has to be to the people that are very open-minded or it won’t really make any sense to you. It is also difficult to read but once you get it, its genius.  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Everything every reviewer said about it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very hard to follow, even when you got the 60's refrences. There was a laugh or two between completely incomprehensible paragraphs. I wanted to like it, but couldn't.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Maria73 More than 1 year ago
This is not the first work by Burroughs that I've read but it is the worst. The text flows through nonsensical chaos that will leave you scratching your head or staring at the page questioning what you just read. The language is graphic, confusing and deals heavily with the darkest sides of substance abuse. His descriptions of the characters, their drug use and sexuality are disturbing. This is not for the faint of heart nor is it for anyone who'd like to read an even remotely coherent book.
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Analogkid60 More than 1 year ago
Apparently written under the influence at a time when drug use was still underground. I just didn’t get it. For the life of me I could not make any sense out of this book. The only parts that were coherent were the essays at the end. It was like 196 pages of Jim Morrison poetry. There’s no discernable plot. Burroughs apparently wrote down every sick, obscene, filthy thought that ran through his drug addled mind. Some parts seem like they were nothing more than random phrases thrown together. I’m certainly no prude; I inhaled, and I have nothing against books that use profanity or describe sexual situations, but Burroughs uses obscenity just for the sake of shock. I had to resign myself to reading 10 pages a day just to get through it. The only reason I didn’t give up altogether was because I believe in finishing any book that I begin. Maybe you need hard drugs to enjoy this book. Perhaps Naked Lunch could be used in the anti-drug campaign as an example of how the mind disintegrates with prolonged drug usage, although I wouldn’t recommend anyone under the age of 16 read this. Unless you enjoy unintelligible mayhem, do yourself a favor and read something else.
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