I had so much fun putting together a list of books you should read when you’re high, that I really wanted to make a new one, just a little different. I really wanted to put together a new list that this time explores weed culture, societal norms and pushes the boundaries, not only in culture, but also in literature. This list is much shorter, but that’s just because these books do have a lot going on nuance wise and make a fun study!
- Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson
Opening this list is my summer obsession. There are many reasons as to why this book had a hold on me the way it did. One of the strangest parts of this story is that it is all true, to an extent. Thompson is the godfather of Gonzo Journalism, reporting on real events with a cinematic perspective and elevated sense of reality. The story of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, is about the time Thompson and his lawyer went on an insane drug bender with the task to find the true meaning of the American Dream. This book takes place in every notable and iconic landmark in Vegas, where Thompson and his lawyer caused nothing but pure chaos back in the 60’s. Originally published in Rolling Stone back in 1971, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas is one of the most exploratory and experimental takes on the Counterculture, Drug culture and youth in America at that time, and totally worth the read.
- The Brown Buffalo by Oscar Acosta
Okay, for all you Journalism and English majors, you really didn’t think I would bring up Thompson without Acosta now did you? The Brown Buffalo was written by Thompson, previously mentioned lawyer, Oscar Acosta. Acosta did a lot of work during the Chicano movement during the 60’s and wrote two books during that time, one of them being The Brown Buffalo. This book is also classified as Gonzo and is the retelling of Acosta’s upbringing and his exploration of the double consciousness. He explores race, drug culture and name-drops many other famous Counterculture icons.
- Inherent Vice by Thomas Pynchon
Now it wouldn’t be a real “Stoner Novel List” without Pynchon. Inherent Vice is always found at the top of everyone’s list, but seeing that this list is mine- I wanted to put my favorite two books at the top. This novel is a bit different from the first two and is classified as Noir Fiction, dark with the perfect Femme Fatale. This story takes place in California during the 70’s and follows the story of Doc Sportello as he uses marijuana and other substances to help expose the Land Developer’s scheme.
Thus concludes my little stoner novel list! I hope you all check out the books mentioned above! Each have been praised for their depiction of Counterculture and embodiment of youth back then, I am sure you’ll enjoy these very much!