The writing style is at the same time sparse, and elegant. This is no
dry accounting, but a work of poetic prose, rich in metaphor and
emotional content. Each reminiscence stood alone for me; which might be
a drawback to the reader expecting a more linearly styled memoir.
Doubly so for those who don’t like their diatribes leavened with
subtlety, or self examination. Being the sort of fellow who likes to
bury his head in the cat box at the mere mention of politics, extremist
or otherwise, I was fairly taken aback upon delving into the author’s
‘infamous’ political predilections (addressed by Chip Smith in the
introduction). It made me glad that I read the book first; I still
haven’t ever read ‘On The Road’, and probably never will, because I
made the mistake of reading the bios first, and can’t get past the fact
of Kerouac being a total ass-wipe. Now, instead of picturing Bradley
Smith as some cartoonish Art Bell reject with a penchant for paranoid
conspiracy theories, I’ll always see him as a zen aspirant on his way
to cracking that last koan. And how can you be mad at a guy who writes
a line like this?…
I’ve always felt the urge to slip through desire, like an eel passing through nets cast out for bigger fish.
you like great prose, written by a man just an epiphany or two short of
emergence into a new, brilliant sphere, buy this book. There’s an
innocent clarity here, as well as a surprising sense of humanitarian
Another recent review characterizes Liver as having "the feel of Ludwig von Mises passed through the filter of, say, Errol Morris (or, in his artier stages, Roman Polanski)."