Posted: Sep 15, 2008 5:15 pm
When he turned the McCain story in to Rolling Stone
in 2000, they told him that it had more words in it than the rest of the entire magazine combined. The unedited version, "Up, Simba" is in Consider the Lobster
, and it's not so much about McCain as it is about how political races are covered in the 21st Century. His essay about 9/11 in that book is probably the best thing I've read on the subject. Here's a link to another of my favorite essays of his: The Host
was one of those books that I kept reading even when I hated it. When I finished it, I felt kind of meh about it, but images, passages, and concepts from it continually float up to the top of my mind even today, more than a decade after I read it. You can see its influence everywhere--even the J-horror movie The Ring
ripped off one of its central premises.
Comparing him to Ellis is laughable. Ellis just wanted to shock. Wallace wanted to understand. And when he didn't understand, he let you know.