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The Curse of Lono
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The Curse of Lono

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  4,599 Ratings  ·  201 Reviews
A wild ride to the dark side of Americana The Curse of Lono is to Hawaii what Fear and Loathing was to Las Vegas: the crazy tales of a journalist's ""coverage"" of a news event that ends up being a wild ride to the dark side of Americana. Originally published in 1983, Curse features all of the zany, hallucinogenic wordplay and feral artwork for which the Hunter S. Thompson ...more
Hardcover, 205 pages
Published October 1st 2005 by Taschen (first published 1983)
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Jul 22, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: HST fans, anyone up for a dark laugh
The most elaborate, hilarious, and engrossing "big fish" tale ever committed to print. This is one of Hunter Thompson's greatest achievements, and it doesn't hurt that the packaging is lavish. A huge coffeetable book with quality prints, facsimiles of the Good Doctor's relevant letters, and interspersed excerpts from other books that fill in the Hawaiian history relevant to the story. What is so fascinating about this last feature is that it reveals what other HST books have left out: the studio ...more
May 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone!
It was such an amazing and twisted read. I couldn't put the book down. I even cuddled with it.
One afternoon this week as I rode my bicycle home from the library I passed under the branches of an array of stout old trees along the roadway. But I had my suspicions about them, and this, more or less verbatim, was what I was thinking:
"They look safe enough, but you read about their dastardly ways once in awhile, dropping a trunk onto some hapless unsuspecting bastard, pile-driving him into oblivion. You'd think I was safe, being a tree-hugger, but they don't care. I'm human."

Now, would I hav
Sep 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This is the Hunter Thompson book you've never heard of, but really want to read. It's mostly about how crappy Hawaii is. It has the best ending of any of his stuff I've read, hands down.

Getting the book though is another matter. The paperback of it has been out of print since the early 80s. It's only produced now by Taschen, the art book company, as a big 60 dollar coffee table book. And they only started really printing it about a year after the first batch of 1000. The first 1000 Taschen put
Jul 29, 2007 rated it it was amazing
I think this is my fave HST book. Coupled with Steadman's delicious gonzo art, the writing and story really comes alive.
Its a crazy romp through Hawaii which no Thompson or Steadman fan should go without reading!
*If you're a fan of Steadmans art, as I am in a big way - look for a recently published version of Lono. Its a huge oversized hardback printed on high quality pages where Steadman's art really is given center stage. I keep it on display at all times!
Feb 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Curse of Lono came out in 1983, which means I would've been about 14 when I found it inexplicable racked in my small town's sole bookshop/newsstand. I freely admit I'd never heard of Thompson or Steadman, and that it was actually the latter's frenetic and vaguely frightening art that drew me to the book. Ten bucks would've been hard for me to come by at the time (probably proceeds from my short-lived Sunday-paper route), but this book was something I had to have. It is not hyperbole to say that ...more
Jul 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
I don't know why I have been in Hawaii this long without reading this. It was time to pick it up.

It has all the hallmarks of a Hunter Thompson work.... energy, macho, drugs & alcohol, fast cars, loose talk and some politically uncorrect nouns and adjectives. The drawings of Ralph Steadman add even more edginess. The story is secondary to the style.

Also, like any Hunter Thompson book, there is redeeming content. While an ordinary journalist would cover Waikiki, surfing and flowers... they rat
Jan 02, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012
*Back-dating reviews based on snips I find*

I’m officially taking a break from Hunter S. Thompson. I’m sick of feeling like I’m missing the point. I swear, that blurb has made me paranoid! Every book I read, I’m like “Is it hilarious? Am I missing something hilarious?” I mean, I like his style of writing and I like the fact that much of it surrounds journalism in some form, but I’ve never read a book – barring ‘Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas’ and felt like I really got the tone it was written in,
Mike Marsbergen
Jul 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-i-own
My current favourite-book-of-all-time, from my current favourite-writer-of-all-time.

I never thought I'd ever get a chance to read this bad-boy, or at least, not until I hit the age of forty. But my parents were kind enough to splurge on it for my birthday back on July 11th, 2013.

I was pleasantly surprised to find that this thing is bloody ginormous. My version is a coffee-table book, meaning it could technically be used as a weapon or to club off intruders.

The pictures are beautiful, and the s
Aug 21, 2007 rated it really liked it
Part of a conversation about this book:

E: Just ate a sub-par dinner, reading Hunter S. Thompson, avoiding cleaning....I'm doing pretty good.
P: Fear and Loathing?
E: The Curse of Lono. Hawaii in the 80s, marathons, botched fishing excursions, mescaline.
P: Right up there with brown copper kettles and warm woolen mittens

Aug 02, 2014 rated it liked it
Not his best effort, a little disjointed and and depressing, but it was an interesting read.
Jon Paprocki
May 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
I listened to this on audiobook and so probably didn't catch everything. I found it quite energetic and a lot of fun, with a number of memorable scenes including "trapped on a boat with drug fiends during a midnight storm," "impersonating a Hawaiian deity," and many scenes in which a Samoan war club proves essential. Another possible title could have been Fear and Loathing in Hawaii. I liked this book a lot, and I will definitely read the physical copy at some point in the future. There were a f ...more
Zan G
May 24, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of H.S. Thompson and/or Ralph Steadman
I had seen this lying around the local Half-Price Books and snagged it with a coupon diminishing the hefty price tag. This is a gigantic book with huge beautiful prints by Steadman as well as the usual crazed drunken rambling of Thompson.

The whole thing is about a trip to Hawaii to cover the Honolulu Marathon that goes awry a la la Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and degenerates into a mescaline-fueled marlin hunt with a smattering of interesting pre-American Hawaiian history. The art is great, t
Alexander McNabb
Nov 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing
It's rather swish of me, but I have the huge and lavish Taschen edition of this wonderful book - probably one of Thompson's most underrated pieces of work.

Any book that starts with the narrator making his way through customs with a blue arm because he chickened out of flushing his stash down the airplane toilet and grabbed it back is obviously going to be pretty 'out there' and this doesn't disappoint.

As usual, Steadman's manic illustrations match Thompson's twisted narrative. Brilliant.

I went b
Nils Lantz
Jan 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
As I read this beautifully written book I noted how much of himself he accepted, he was not afraid to share everything. Judgement on his lifestyle or bad decisions was left for his peers while he continued on with his whimsical lunacy.
I say lunacy without malice, I use it to describe the mind set of those brave enough to be unique, live their lives and embrace their mistakes even when knowingly making them. I long to be rid of the anxiety which holds me back from such adventures, living for the
Jul 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Hunter S. Thompson , on his birthday July 18
Curious and with a grand contempt for all authority, paying attention to the man behind the curtain and bringing us all along with him for the ride, iconoclast and rebel, transgressing boundaries with wild abandon and great joy, an imp of satire, embracing all that is human and moving through all stratum of our society with an ease of blending in and the adaptational skill of a shapeshifter, for whom life is a party and the ordinary becomes spectacula
Thomas Fugett
Jul 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 28, 2017 rated it liked it
we're in very similar thematic territory with fear and loathing in Las Vegas here: Thompson is on assignment to cover a local sporting event, falls in with a bad crowd and gets into drug crazed conflicts with the locals. He runs on a manic energy and his words hum in a way that is entirely his own, but the "plot" as it were mostly subsists on this energy, absent of most functional narrative thread. stuff happens and it leads somewhere and where it leads (Thompson begins to believe himself the lo ...more
Dan Furoy
Jun 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
A gonzo take on Hawaiian life from the king of bizarre interpretations of popular culture. I can see why this book isn’t for everyone, or even all of HST’s fans, but as someone who has spent a large portion of my life living as a white haole boy in HI, it really rings true. It’s still a drug and alcohol fueled psycho trip, but the allusions to Island culture and folklore, told thru the good doctor’s skewed world view, were equal parts haunting and hilarious. Ralph Steadman’s bizarre illustration ...more
Oct 08, 2017 rated it did not like it
This is the kind of story that could make for a compelling movie, but as a book in the manner it's told the story fails to stay interesting. Those who are Hunter S. Thompson devotees will appreciate the prose for its style -- signature HST language and scenes. As far as content goes, though, it's choppy, repetitive, confusing, and too often pretentious. Then again, I was never a fan of Fear and Loathing, so maybe HST just isn't my thing.
Feb 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Savage in its hilarity, 'The Curse of Lono' is an often overlooked gem of the HST collection.
From superstitious 'natives' to an ocean devoid of fish in a paradise beset by storms, this book has everything, (with the exception of adequate coverage of the Honolulu marathon). A must read for HST fans wanting to broaden their HST vocabulary.
Aug 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a Hunter S. Thompson book. Not much more needs be said or written about it.

Fans will enjoy it, non-fans of HST will regularly shake their head in disbelief.

It’s what HST does. It’s what his words cause in one. Love it or hate it.

I’m part of the fan club.
Steve Fox
May 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Classic HST. I was feeling the need for something less traditional - a little darker. Thompson delivered, as always, this time with a sordid journey through the Hawaiian islands. All the typical HST parts are there. I might need more this summer.
Josh Shear
Sep 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent. Like all "Gonzo" Thompson, it makes you wonder about the particular events that actually occurred in Hawaii to form the basis of this book. It also makes me want to see Steadman's work in more books.
Sep 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Better than I remembered it (having read it back in 1983). Friends gave me HST books written after this one, but I think he lapsed into self-parody about this time. Still, it's pretty funny, and Steadman's drawings are wonderful, as usual. The last great work of Gonzo.
Oct 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It’s HST. So I love it.
Mirko Bozic
Oct 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A Thompson classic, in a beautiful collector's edition. One of those which aren't meant for shelves but for display.
Eric Lemons
Oct 29, 2018 rated it liked it
So so hijinks from a mad man.
Jul 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Favorite! Could not put it down.
May 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Siempre se agradece una buena traducción al español.
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Did anyone find this book as funny as I did? 1 5 Apr 26, 2015 04:36PM  
curse of lono 4 22 Mar 08, 2013 12:02PM  
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Hunter Stockton Thompson was an American journalist and author, famous for his book Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. He is credited as the creator of Gonzo journalism, a style of reporting where reporters involve themselves in the action to such a degree that they become the central figures of their stories. He is also known for his promotion and use of psychedelics and other mind-altering substanc ...more
“Yesterday's weirdness is tomorrow's reason why.” 525 likes
“The greatest mania of all is passion: and I am a natural slave to passion: the balance between my brain and my soul and my body is as wild and delicate as the skin of a Ming vase.” 359 likes
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