“Dan Fante is a badass, just ask him. The cover of the book touts him as a "Genuine literary outlaw." This is solidified by the picture of him on the back, showing him with a maniacal grin and holding a gun. I have to admit, all this propoganda is what first drew my interest towards the book. Once I saw the picture of him, I thought, "hell yeah," and bought it. Now that I've read it, however, I realize that he's just a Bukowski/Hunter Thompson knock-off. And, as we all know, knock-offs are nothing compared to the originals.
The writing in the book was interesting enough to pull me through the book. The main character was funny and his zany antics were enough to keep boredom from taking over. But, there wasn't really a story. There was no main conflict that he had to overcome. Drinking was supposed to be the main conflict but throughout the book it seemed like a sidenote on his scale of problems. Sure, drinking usually led to problems, but it seemed like an outside force should have some impact on his life.
I know the main character is pretty much supposed to be Fante, as all his books have the same character and he's supposed to be a writer that "lives what he writes." This is another reason why the book left a bad taste in my mouth. It all reeks of literary masturbation. He thinks he's badass and he wants you to think so too.”
Josh wrote this review Thursday, May 20, 2010.