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"In another country or another era, Dennis Cooper's books would be circulated in secret, explosive samizdat editions that friends and fans would pass around and savor like forbidden absinthe." --New York Times Book Review
"His work belongs to that of Poe, the Marquis de Sade, Charles Baudelaire, and Georges Bataille, other writers who argued with mortality." -- San Francisco Chronicle
"There's a stainless steel sheen to Cooper's sentences that is as admirable as anything this side of Didion." -- Salon
From the internationally acclaimed author of Ugly Man and one of "the last literary outlaws in mainstream American fiction" (Bret Easton Ellis) comes a survey of his cultural criticism. From interviews with celebrities such as Leonard DiCaprio and Keanu Reeves; to obituaries for Kurt Cobain and River Phoenix; to writings on social issues--including the touchstone piece "AIDS: Words from the front"; Smothered in Hugs spans three decades of journalism from Dennis Cooper.
“Cooper delivers with the unswerving faith of someone who lives and dies by his gut reactions but also with the methodical intelligence of someone who parses those reactions so he can articulate them to the sharpest degree.”
-Los Angeles Times
“Even when he steps away from the transgressive, taboo subject matter on which he made his reputation, Cooper’s outsider perspective and cold, hard, practically violent stare remains hypnotic.”
-San Francisco Chronicle
“It’s a joy to watch Cooper’s mind at work.”
-Time Out Chicago
“The pieces...show facets of Cooper’s particular genius you don’t see in his formally and thematically controlled fiction....More than anything, Smothered in Hugs will send you out into the world—to the bookstore, record store, art gallery, library—in search of the lost classics Cooper so excitedly introduces.”
“The best kind of critic.”
“There’s a stainless steel sheen to Cooper’s sentences that is as admirable as anything this side of Didion.”