The Curse of Lono

ISBN: 3822848972
ISBN 13: 9783822848975
By: Hunter S. Thompson Steve Crist Ralph Steadman

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Autobiography Biography Currently Reading Favorites Fiction Gonzo Journalism Non Fiction To Read Travel

Reader's Thoughts


*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, or the jokes – if there was any.I think I’ve gotten myself wound up to the point I’m determined to read more and crack the issue, but it’s just making me more paranoid! That seems about right, considering the excessive drugs in every book of his, like, ever. I’m officially on Hunter hiatus. For now.(I read one of his books a while back and thought it was good - I liked it, but that was all. Then I read the blurb in which a review had called it hilarious. That's almost certainly always going to be the incident I refer to any time I read his books).

Greg Panos

A good friend of mine owns a copy... maybe second of third edition-- still cost him a fortune. We were talking recently about our love of the south pacific and plans for buying time share on the big island of hawaii or possibly kauai. He asks me if i've ever read Lono. I had read F&L in Las Vegas many moons ago and never went deeper into HST. So I located a copy of this sucker and enjoyed the ride tremdously. I just connected with the rambling, psychotic saga on many many levels. This acted as the catalyst for my HST obsession over the past two months.

Peterk Koleff

Truly a masterpiece. Even as of today I open this precious thing and read passages to cheer myself up. I dont know in what kind of drunken or narcotic haze a person have to be in order to write with such a tremendous vibe but the book really shows the author's superiority over words. In the usual Hunter S. Thompson style the reader is dragged into the deep, sacrificing common sense for just living for the moment, feeling the whole madness of this remote location, all done by telling us this silly, near-fantastic story..


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 studious preparation behind the wild stories.Roughly ten years after Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, the action opens with the line "We were about forty minutes out of San Fransisco when the crew finally decided to take action on the problem in Lavatory 1B." Remarkably similar to the iconic opening "We were somewhere around Barstow on the edge of the desert when the drugs began to take hold". And so begins a manifold tale of America in the '80s-a tale of a Christmas vacation gone horribly, horribly wrong-a tale of high stakes sports fishing-and the tale of a man finding his inner godliness on the westernmost edge of America.Put that way, The Curse of Lono might be the most ambitious book in the Thompson oeuvre. Either way, I personally think it is his funniest.

Shane Westfall

Great read! This has to be the only book that has made me curious about visiting Hawaii. I always thought the only reason the islands existed was so that conservative Americans could have the experience of visiting another country without stepping off of U.S. soil. Anyway, it is some of Hunter's best work and only AFTER I found it at a garage sale for one dollar did I learn that it is rare and hard to find and such, so that made it more pleasant. Of course other reviewers online make it sound as if his story is unusual and it sounds similar to many of my vacations, so maybe they are exaggerating that as well.


Strangely enough I moved to Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii a few months after the events described in this novel.It stirred up long forgotten memories, and sent a chill down my spine as I recalled a similar overall experience with the place in terms of it being extremely beautiful, and extremely dangerous all at the same time.The illustrations are incredible and lend a rich flavor, especially in the size format this book is printed in.Hair raising adventures for sure, not to be missed for serious HST fans.GONZO forever!


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 out were signed by Ralph Steadman, Thompson's artist and partner, and numbered. You can find these first 1000 on used book pages on or Amazon for around a thousand bucks, making it one of the more pricey things I know of on those used services, besides that Madonna Sex book from the early 90s.So basically if you want to read it, you're screwed, unless of course you know somebody that has a DRM free digital copy. But who would possibly have one of those?


Definitely lesser Thompson, entertaining but not much beyond that.

Julie Patchouli

I loved this book.


Hunter seemed a little bitter in this one. Opposite to 'Fear and Loathing,' he seemed less about making fun of 'our' situation, and more about crawling under people's skin and bullying and taunting the unsuspecting victims around him.In the difference of ten years, Hunter seemed to have lost hope in humanity, and this book made that point very clear. It was a well written and tragic story about one of America's greatest journalist's hate-filled trips to Hawaii. The artwork by Ralph Steadman is a nice compliment to this book.


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 mittensExactly.


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 rate only a mention with HST.The first focus is the Honolulu Marathon - not even present in most travel books although it is every bit as international as its NYC and Boston cousins. The description is pure Thompson... and right on.Thompson does the same for 2 week storm on the Big Island - again - not often mentioned in other travel literature.The longest part is about sport fishing in Kona.Interspersed is some period writing of the voyage of Captain Cook and one from Mark Twain.It's a good fast read. I like the layout. Nicely wedged in Hawaiian allusions. Pure, but not vintage, Thompson.


As someone who considers his best work to be "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas", it's hard to really approach a Hunter S. Thompson book without any kind of bias. "Lono" takes Thompson and his artist, Ralph Steadman, into Hawaii to cover the Honolulu Marathon. Amazingly, Thompson ends up covering the event without much incident, but the events take a turn in that way only gonzo journalism is capable of.A somewhat short read, but enjoyable all the same.

Tim Ryan

A very fun Hunter S picture book. By no means my favorite of his, but there are some hidden gems, and the Steadman art is always a favorite of mine. I would recommend it to anyone who likes Hunter, and would not to anyone who doesn't. I have already decided that one day it will be my official coffee table book, as it is large, has pretty pictures, and many of the stories or snippets are short and easily understandable.


This book is a good view into Thompson's later years as he takes a trip to Hawaii with artist Ralph Stedman. Like Fear and Loathing, both characters have very colorful personalities; and although the drug escapades and drunken stupors aren't quite as extreme, the story sheds light to Thompson's self realization and discovery of his own almighty powers (as a person). I would certainly recommend this.

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