The Executioner's Song

The Executioner's Song

Paperback - 2012
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Norman Mailer's Pulitzer Prize-winning and unforgettable classic about convicted killer Gary Gilmore now in a brand-new edition.

Arguably the greatest book from America's most heroically ambitious writer, THE EXECUTIONER'S SONG follows the short, blighted life of Gary Gilmore who became famous after he robbed two men in 1976 and killed them in cold blood. After being tried and convicted, he immediately insisted on being executed for his crime. To do so, he fought a system that seemed intent on keeping him alive long after it had sentenced him to death. And that fight for the right to die is what made him famous.

Mailer tells not only Gilmore's story, but those of the men and women caught in the web of his life and drawn into his procession toward the firing squad. All with implacable authority, steely compassion, and a restraint that evokes the parched landscape and stern theology of Gilmore's Utah. THE EXECUTIONER'S SONG is a trip down the wrong side of the tracks to the deepest source of American loneliness and violence. It is a towering achievement-impossible to put down, impossible to forget.
Publisher: New York : Grand Central Publishing, 2012.
Edition: First Grand Central Publishing trade edition.
ISBN: 9780446584388
044658438X
Branch Call Number: Fic
Characteristics: xvi, 1109 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm.

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Katrina1979
Jul 05, 2017

This book was absolutely amazing!

CMLibrary_sfetzer May 17, 2016

The Executioner’s Song is perhaps Norman Mailer’s most ambitious work, both in scale and in style. Told in the tone of a journalist presenting only the facts, this “true-life novel” follows Gary Gilmore as he is released from prison, kills two men, and is ultimately executed. Mailer’s immense work spares no details as he documents the disheartening life and death of Gilmore who had been incarcerated for most of his adult existence. At turns heartbreaking, hopeful, depressing, and even grotesque, Mailer manages to capture not only a single human being but a whole community and its myriad residents. Readers who enjoyed Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood but were left wanting more will love Mailer’s masterpiece.

Armdis Aug 26, 2014

Long (1109 pages!), sometimes incomprehensible account of the disturbing life, imprisonment and death of notorious Utah armed robber and killer Gary Gilmore. The pop culture references are somewhat distracting at times, the narrative style can be rather confusing, and I'm reasonably sure that this story could have been told in way less than 1109 pages, but,here it is: Norman Mailer's ultimate salute to his fetishistic obsession with criminals, criminality and penitentiary life. I get the feeling Norman Mailer would gladly have held the inside-out-turned pockets of anybody with a scary enough rap sheet and enough years behind bars. Anyway. it's a decent enough book, if only for the reason you can tell people that you were bad-ass enough to survive this 1109 page killer.

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