Begun in 1959 by a twenty-two-year-old Hunter S. Thompson, The Rum Diary is a brilliantly tangled love story of jealousy, treachery, and violent alcoholic lust in the Caribbean boomtown that was San Juan, Puerto Rico, in the late 1950s. The narrator, freelance journalist Paul Kemp, irresistibly drawn to a sexy, mysterious woman, is soon thrust into a world where corruption and get-rich-quick schemes rule and anything (including murder) is permissible. Exuberant and mad, youthful and energetic, this dazzling comedic romp provides a fictional excursion as riveting and outrageous as Thompson’s Fear and Loathing books.
Topics: Puerto Rico, 1950s, Alcoholism, Jealousy, Writers, Semi-Autobiographical, Drugs, Midlife Crisis, American Author, Male Author, Love, and Gritty
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This is a mediocre semi-biographical novel about a very ill tempered, drunkard of a journalist. The whole book is just a content battle with jealousy, treachery, violent alcoholism and lust but this book doesn’t really move very fast and seems to feel like it drags way too much. I was expecting something exciting but the plot seemed to drag on and while hinting at a plot this book never really took off. Maybe as a movie it would be cut down enough to make a plot but as a book this seemed to drag on way too much.read more
Thompson is easily among my favorite writers. This is his first novel. The influence that Hemingway had on him are no clearer than when examined according to this text. Thompson would later distort the title of the specific work that "The Rum Diary" is so obviously based on, employing the clever pun "The Scum Also Rises" as a title to a journalistic, political tirade. In other words, and in terms of classroom application, students would have no trouble comparing this text with "The Sun Also Rises," a more traditional novel.read more
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