Ensiform's Reviews > Hell's Angel: The Life and Times of Sonny Barger and the Hell's Angels Motorcycle Club

Hell's Angel by Ralph "Sonny" Barger
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Jan 21, 14

bookshelves: non-fiction
Read in October, 2001

The Angel story told by the longtime president of the Oakland chapter. Bold and informative stuff, one would think, right? Wrong. Barger seems to be not only the most taciturn and non-introspective memorialist ever, but just plain dumb. He tells the reader nothing about what he feels, thinks, opines, or even guesses about any of the events of his life. Why did he rise to become leader of the Angels – not how, but why? What’s special about him? The book doesn’t reveal the answer.

What does he think of Hunter Thompson? “Chicken-shit,” of course, even though by Barger’s own admission Thompson told an Angel to his face he was a punk for hitting a woman and a dog. That’s the basic problem with the book: everyone who isn’t Barger or Barger’s best buddy is a fool and coward, period. That’s the extent of the insight you get as to what makes the guy tick. Useless.
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