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Hell's Angels

A Strange and Terrible Saga
Written by: Hunter S. Thompson
Narrated by: Scott Sowers
Length: 10 hrs and 39 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (73 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas author Hunter S. Thompson rocked the literary world with his mind-bending style of Gonzo journalism. First published in 1966, Hell’s Angels is Thompson’s up-close and personal look at the infamous motorcycle gang during the time when its moniker was most feared.

©1995 Hunter S. Thompson (P)2011 Recorded Books, LLC

What the critics say

“[Thompson’s] language is brilliant … [he] has presented us with a close view of a world most of us would never dare encounter.” ( New York Times)

What listeners say about Hell's Angels

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Thompson does it again

Huge fan of all of Hunter S Thompson’s work and this proves again what a great writer he is. From start to finish this books keeps you engaged and wanting more! #Audible1

2 people found this helpful

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wow

hounestly such a good look into the grity dark heart of american outlaws
HST is an amazing writer and the narrator isnt half bad as well.

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want to listen about dunk fools?

Yeah not for me. If you have an obsession about the details of drunken fools who ride motorcycles go ahead. 99% of the book is about a group of un-showered idiots getting drunk in public parks.

probably the most boring book I've listened to-date.

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The book itself is great the voice-over sounds lik

the book itself is great but the narrator sounds like Artie ziff from The Simpsons. the sentence structure feels so much like Thompson but this narrator's voice completely doesn't suit it sounds like he has never smoked a cigarette or did a drug in his life. I struggle while listening do not be picturing Thompson's voice speaking the words. He sounds like your little brother excited to tag along when you really just want him to stay home so you can hang out with your friends . hopefully he hasn't narrated too many more of Thompson's books because I just bought the whole set and I'm cringing that I didn't look.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

a hard listen

I think it was poorly written. writer was trying to dress it up to be more then what it is.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Joe Bloggs
  • 2013-07-13

Visions of the Future of Motorcycle Gangs

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, It's very entertaining.

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

I knew the ending before I read the book. For some reason the tag line that was on the original book that went something like "I lived with and was almost killed by the Hells Angels" is nowhere to be found on the modern audio book. As a side note, the idea that Hunter S. Thompson would pick a fight just so he could write that tag line to sell a book is almost laughable. That is actually a theory that a certain Hells Angel set forth in a certain very popular book.

What does Scott Sowers bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

He does a fine job getting into the character of Hunter S. Thompson. I almost feel as if I know the man.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

"I partied with, lived with and was almost killed by the Hell's Angels"

Any additional comments?

So much has changed since the 1960's and yet at the core of it all, motorcycle gangs are essentially composed of the same sort of people then and now. They do essentially the same sorts of things; rape, murder, drugs, drug selling, various and assundry dirty deeds. If the men in these gangs did anything other than ride motorcycles, society would regard them with the contempt and loathing they warrant. How interesting is human nature that motorcycles transform lowly thugs into something other than what they are? Same thing for pirates of yesteryear. I myself can feel and taste the answer, yet find it impossible to put it into words.

34 people found this helpful

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  • Jerry
  • 2015-08-06

Very Entertaining & Educational

What made the experience of listening to Hell's Angels the most enjoyable?

I was told this book is Hunter S. Thompson pre-Gonzo style and it is the beginning of that type of journalism that he is known for. For me I felt this book was almost a look at California and the US in the mid to late 60's told through the Thompson's investigation into the Angels. This was before my time so I found it very educational. I am also a motorcycle enthusiast and enjoyed the detail into their bikes.

What does Scott Sowers bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

He reads with a good intensity that helped engage you into the story.

15 people found this helpful

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  • GanjaPlanta
  • 2014-10-20

Must listen for Hunter fans

Cool book, you can see he was like looking for trouble as much as he was trying to write a story.

24 people found this helpful

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  • hypersona
  • 2018-06-15

Not a favorite.

Usually I enjoy biographical stories about darker subcultures... I just couldn't get into this. I understand Thompson is a literary icon, but I felt the narrative was campy and trying too hard... trying to impress or get reaction. I dont know, maybe its just not aging well.

11 people found this helpful

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  • Candice Davis
  • 2018-07-03

narrator lame

narrator was awful.
the story is so good but needs to be read by someone else

19 people found this helpful

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  • Kimberley
  • 2017-05-02

Hated the narrator

I struggled as I didn't care for the narrator. Kinda repetitive until the last couple of hours.

8 people found this helpful

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  • cody
  • 2015-06-24

love hunter s.

wish the was read by someone else but other wise a great book. some parts are hard to hear but still great.

20 people found this helpful

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  • NIS3R
  • 2018-07-06

really good book, not a fan of the narration style

I really enjoyed reading this book but wasn't a fan of the narrator's style. It felt forced and hammed up and in the end I was unable to get through it and just read the book again.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Tami
  • 2017-11-18

Narrorator Ruins a Great Book

Nothing can ruin a fantastic story faster than a bad narrator. I struggle daily to get through this book because I love the story. He takes a breath at the end of every sentence. You cannot tell if he is narrating HST in a conversation or if HST is describing an event. His inflection isn’t good and doesn’t have anything that make this feel like a HST read. The breathing though, argh! Also, he runs out of breath and speeds up his narrative to complete the sentence.

4 people found this helpful

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  • PlantCrone
  • 2015-01-10

Flashback to the 60s--Hells Angels ride!!

I had the dubious 'good' fortune to experience the Hells Angels @ Bass Week for almost a decade, especially around Memorial Day Weekend and The Fourth of July..which sometimes can be as long as 5-6 days depending on what day The Fourth comes! We found, as a whole, the members to be courteous and friendly, especially to both my young sons. My gouges son, wh was toddler to 6 year old during these summers, remembers Hells Angels MC members tousling his curly red hair. We shared a cabin with good friend who had children the same age as ours. And we had to go to the store, one of the 2 in 'town' at least once a day. My girlfriends and I soon found that wearing our bikini toe and cut off shorts to the store wasn't really good idea.
We also had the pleasure of watching the Angels water ski behind rented ski boats and even went to Willow Cove to offer water skiing lessons toy these guys...and yes-they do water ski in their colors..back then colors were most frequently work on denim jackets with the sleeves torn off...

Anyhow, it was a real memory blast to listen to Hunter Thompson's non-fiction story about his experiences with the Hells Angels-I purchased it because my son, who is now is in his early 40's, has good memories about his experiences at Bass Lake and with the Hells Angels. He said I'd enjoy it and surprisingly enough, I did.

Narrator Scott Sowers did an excellent job relating this story about his year-or-so long experiences hanging out with the Oakland CA chapter of the Angels. I had hoped this would go into the Altamont disaster when the Greatful Dead hired the Angels (and paid them with beer, no less) to provide security for an open air concert akin to Woodstock as far as security fences goes...that is a great story and I'd love to hear it from Sowers POV..but he was no longer hanging out with the Angels then.

If you are an AARP member (over 55) or West Coast person and have memories of that era I recommend buying this book. If you are a motorcycle enthuses it's a good look at the history of a significant time in 20th century cycling.

Well written and narrated I recommend this story to almost anyone with interests in this field.

8 people found this helpful