Lynn's Reviews > The Wild Boys

The Wild Boys by William S. Burroughs
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Feb 09, 08

Read in January, 1975

I was relatively innocent when I read The Wild Boys and it gave me nightmares. The staccato, choppy plot is too disjointed to ever really allow anything to come to a close so the images tend to remain in some vestibule of the brain and come spilling out at night when your poor consciousness tries to form them into some kind of completeness.

The images themselves are sometimes gruesome and you can almost sense Burroughs' lunatic energy and all his wild imaginings spilling out on the page and being herded-somewhat unsuccessfully- into the form of a novel. Some people will have trouble with the homosexual imagery, but almost everyone will be haunted to some extent by the casual eroticization of death and cruelty-I think the Mayan sequences are some of the most persistent.
But this is not mere incoherent pornography, there is a wild, energetic beauty and an almost religious devotion to wontonly intense experience that is-along with WSB's poetic style-unforgettable.

Lynn Hoffman, author of the much-less disturbing bang BANG: A Novel and the downright soothing New Short Course in Wine,The
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