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Neal Cassady: The Fast Life of a Beat Hero

Author: David Sandison, Graham Vickers

Publication date: 2006

Chicago Review Press

"The primary goal of this new biography is to separate the facts of Cassady's life from the various legends that surround it. Thus, the narrative begins with numerous true and fabricated versions of its subject's birth, after which it diligently pursues the facts behind Cassady's often exaggerated road trips and sexual encounters. While a great deal of the book recounts Cassady's influential friendships with Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg, the character who is most vividly and sympathetically brought to life is Carolyn Cassady, Neal's wife for 20 years. Carolyn served as his rarely heeded conscience, and her presence in the tale repeatedly reminds the reader of the consequences of Neal's selfish and destructive activities."

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