By Marc Weingarten
. . . In chilly Blood, the electrical Kool-Aid Acid attempt, worry and Loathing in Las Vegas, Slouching in the direction of Bethlehem, The Armies of the evening . . .
Starting in 1965 and spanning a ten-year interval, a bunch of writers together with Tom Wolfe, Jimmy Breslin, homosexual Talese, Hunter S. Thompson, Joan Didion, John Sack, and Michael Herr emerged and joined some of their pioneering elders, together with Truman Capote and Norman Mailer, to remake American letters. the proper chroniclers of an age of frenzied cultural switch, they have been blessed with the perception that conventional instruments of reporting may turn out insufficient to inform the tale of a kingdom manically hopscotching from desire to doom and again again—from struggle to rock, assassination to medicines, hippies to Yippies, Kennedy to the darkish lord Nixon. conventional just-the-facts reporting easily couldn’t supply a neat and symmetrical order to this chaos.
Marc Weingarten has interviewed a few of the significant avid gamers to supply a startling behind-the-scenes account of the increase and fall of the main progressive literary outpouring of the postwar period, set opposed to the backdrop of a few of the main turbulent—and significant—years in modern American existence. those are the tales in the back of these tales, from Tom Wolfe’s white-suited adventures within the counterculture to Hunter S. Thompson’s drug-addled invention of gonzo to Michael Herr’s redefinition of warfare reporting within the hell of Vietnam. Weingarten additionally tells the deeper backstory, recounting the wealthy and fantastic historical past of the editors and the magazines who made the stream attainable, significantly the 3 maximum editors of the era—Harold Hayes at Esquire, Clay Felker at New York, and Jann Wenner at Rolling Stone. and eventually Weingarten takes us during the dying of the recent reporters, a tragedy of hubris, miscalculation, and company menacing.
This is the tale of might be the final nice reliable time in American journalism, a time while writers didn’t simply conceal tales yet immersed themselves in them, and while journalism didn’t simply record the United States yet reshaped it.
“Within a seven-year period, a bunch of writers emerged, possible out of nowhere—Tom Wolfe, Jimmy Breslin, homosexual Talese, Hunter S. Thompson, Joan Didion, John Sack, Michael Herr—to impose a few order on all of this American mayhem, each one in his or her personal specific demeanour (a few outdated palms, like Truman Capote and Norman Mailer, chipped in, as well). They got here to inform us tales approximately ourselves in ways in which we couldn’t, tales in regards to the means lifestyles used to be being lived within the sixties and seventies and what all of it intended to us. The stakes have been excessive; deep fissures have been rending the social cloth, the area was once out of order. in order that they turned our grasp explainers, our city criers, even our ethical conscience—the New Journalists.” —from the Introduction
From the Hardcover edition.