William Burroughs’ Books
Back in 2017 we posted a list of William Burroughs book-recommendations. We’ve recently been reading M.C.Kinniburgh‘s recently-published, provocative and inspiring new book,
Wild Intelligence, (an extension of her 2019 CUNY dissertation) and thought to extend and up-date this into a note on Burroughs’ Library (or Burroughs’ Libraries, since he gathered books together in a variety of locations throughout the course of a long and, at times, somewhat peripatetic career).
The centrality of Burroughs as Beat bibliophile, disseminator, reader, and influencer from the earliest days, has, as Thom Robinson has noted, in a must-read essay from 2011 – “Burroughs’ Library”, resulted in an actively symbolic, even mythic, identity – a curiosity – What was Burroughs reading? – the sense that the mage may have some secrets – what is it that, following these primary sources, we ourselves might discover and know?
M.C.Kinniburgh, in her study, cites the extraordinary project of the scholar, Ralph Maud to replicate/gather together the reading materials of the poet Charles Olson (see here for more news on the Maud-Olson Library). Burroughs, it might be noted, has a similar savior,
Michael Stevens – “Stevens estimates he has tracked down 1,152 books connected to Burroughs’ reading”, Jed Birmingham writes (this was an early estimate – see his account of Stevens’ extraordinary project and commitment – here)
In the spirit of Katchadourian’s project, here’s an edited selection culled from Stevens’ recent (2021) listing:
Ralph Louis Woods – The New World of Dreams.
Patricia Garfield – Creative Dreaming.
Russell Targ & Harold Puthoff – Mind-Reach: Scientists Look at Psychic Ability.
P. E. I. Bonewits – Real Magic
Isha Schwaller De Lubicz – Her-Bak: The Living Face of Ancient Egypt and
Her-Bak: Egyptian Initiate.
W. B. Seabrook – The Magic Island.
F. Bruce Lamb – The Wizard of the Upper Amazon: The Story of Manuel Cordova-Rios.
Tobias Schneebaum – Wild Man.
Gary Jennings – Aztec .
Anton Chekhov – The Tales of Chekhov Volume 1: The Darling and Other Stories
Anton Chekhov – The Tales of Chekhov Volume 2: The Duel and Other Stories
Robert Penn Warren and Albert Erskine (eds) – Short Story Masterpieces.
Bennett Cerf (ed.) – Famous Ghost Stories
Everett F. Bleiler (ed.) – A Treasury of Victorian Ghost Stories.
Gert Schiff – Images of Horror and Fantasy
Michael De-la-Noy – Denton Welch: The Making of a Writer.
Lawrence D. Stewart – Paul Bowles: The Illumination of North Africa.
Jane Bowles – Out in the World: Selected Letters of Jane Bowles 1935-1970
Tennessee Williams – Memoirs.
Ted Morgan – Maugham: A Biography.
Hamilton Cochran – Freebooters of the Red Sea: Pirates, Politicians and Pieces of Eight.
Richard Patterson – Historical Atlas of the Outlaw West.
Cormac McCarthy – Blood Meridian or The Evening Redness in the West
Johnny Dolphin – Billy the Kid
E. M. Forster – A Room with a View
Terry Southern – Flash and Filigree
Alasdair Gray – Unlikely Stories, Mostly.
J. I. M. Stewart – The Bridge at Arta.
Terry Wilson – ‘D’ Train: A Novel. .
Rudolph Wurlitzer – Slow Fade
Richard Frede – The Interns
David L. Lindsey – Heat from Another Sun.
Marshall Goldberg – Skeletons
Klein, T. E. D. – Dark Gods and The Ceremonies.
Doug Masters – TNT: Kingdom of Death.
Trevanian – The Loo Sanction.
Delacorta (Daniel Odier) – NANA.
Thomas Chastain – 911..
Tony Hillerman – The Blessing Way.
Olaf Stapledon – Last and First Men & Star Maker,
Frank Belknap Long –The Hounds of Tindalos.
Brian M. Stableford – Critical Threshold.
Rudy Rucker – The 57th Franz Kafka.
Michael Medved – Hospital.
Howard A. Olgin – The Doctor Game
Robin Cook – Mindbend
Robin Cook – Godplayer
John Saul – Brain Child.
Brian Garfield – The Paladin.
Ken Weaver – Texas Crude.
Victor Bockris & Gerard Malanga – Uptight: The Velvet Underground Story
Speaking of libraries and collections, we would be amiss if we didn’t mention Harry Smith