Best Buk Bio(s)? (1 Viewer)

Sure Thing Man, I just found it strange that he'd listed other sites & no Bukowski, because the book is most definatly geared towards/for Bukowski ,more so than the Beats,(this is why I wonder at the 'connection' made). I assume it would have been harder for the author to get a book publised just on Bukowski, so he 'broadened his horizons', but still not one website listed? I wonder why. CRB:)
crb, i see what you mean. there are two websites for neal cassady, three for kerouac, three for burroughs, but not ONE for buk. that seems odd since bukowski's name is in the freakin' title...
[...] WHY does there seem to be such an urge to link up Bukowski and the Beats? ...

i see a point in it:

- Both (Buk and 'the Beats') were a phenomenon, that was based on the need to create a 'new style', far away from traditional thought of what literature should be, using 'real talk' etc. (i'm talking of the late 50s-60s here - of course, Buk had been writing from the early 40s to the early 90s, which is a much wider period than that of the Beats.)
- Both were using their everydaylife to produce literature out of it.
- Both were more depending on 'feeling' than on 'brain' (like intellectual dispute etc) - (please excuse my bad ability of expressing this thought in English, but i'm sure, you do know what i mean here.)
- Both were not really fans of the major majority, the society, the leading politics.

which leads to the reasons, why Buk is NOT a Beat:

- even though he wasn't happy with the state of society / politics, he Never had the urge to go out and preach in order to change things.
and another:
- he never was a person to cling to a clique. he was an individual and a loner all over. the Beats were Not. (Neeli has pointed to that in his bio, and i find this a valid point.)

so far today.

Good points all around. One reason I think that Buk gets linked to the Beats is that I suspect that his work is often discovered by that 18-25 year old segment of the population who, upon leaving high school or college become exposed to "less mainstream" literature at that time. I know I discovered Kerouac, Ferlinghetti, Ginsberg and Bukowski within a year or so of each other, so there's a relationship there, even if it it is entirely manufactured.

So, like the Beats, Buk's work was a new genre that occurred more or less around the same time as the Beat movement, and pigeon-holers lumped it all together because it's far easier to give things a cursory read and lump them all together than it is to delve into the works or a writer and just let it be whatever it actually is.
The way he goes off about the Neely Cherkovski (sp?) bio in the volume of letters I just finished sure makes that one look like the WORST book on Bukowski. Hilariously, it's the only Bukowski bio I have read and didn't think it was bad but when I read it I had nothing to compare it to.

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Hello everyone,

I have been reading and appreciating Bukowski for quite a while and now I have gotten to the point where I feel an urge to dig in real deep in his life and work. The problem is just that I don't know where to start. Therefore I ask you guys, who I know are very well versed and full of knowledge when it comes to our man, if you could tell me which Bukowski biography or memoir you consider to be the best?

I don't know if I should post a reply or not since it has already been discussed but, David Stephen Calonne's book should interest you. Highly recommended !


Reaper Crew
I feel the Hunchback of East Hollywood is the best of the Bios.
I haven't read the book, but from what I've heard about it (from many a reliable source) I reckon you must be closely related to Mrs Malone to shill suggest it.
Nice try.

Every time I see the cover of that book I get hives.
I'm afraid the cover is the better part of the book.


Founding member
Yes, we can include any book that was "written" by reading and rearranging existing bios. If you look at the other books Malone has churned out they are all the same. Hack jobs pieced together from other sources.

A real biography is a difficult, time consuming, expensive endeavor. The only people I can think of who went to that trouble are Sounes and John Dullaghan, who made Born Into This.

Though I'm pretty sure @Philip Wissbeck didn't come here just to shill for that book, since he's been a member for more than seven years.


"The law is wrong; I am right"
Funny, that Phillip Wissbeck thinks it's the best Buk bio around. I wonder if he ever read Sounes´ Buk bio?
I´ve got the Malone bio and I can't think of a worse Buk bio. I´ll never know how I managed to get through it. If you want to know what people think of it, just read the reviews on Amazon.

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