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Tom Wolfe. The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. Photographs by Lawrence Schiller & Ted Streshinsky

Edition of 1,768
Hardcover in a slipcase, letterpress-printed text, two different paper stocks, and tip-ins, 9.4 x 13.4 in., 6.57 lb, 356 pages
US$ 350
Edition: English
Availability: In Stock
Hop on board Ken Kesey’s bus and join the Merry Pranksters in their hallucinogenic ride through America. In this signed Collector’s Edition, Tom Wolfe’s generation-defining text is published in letterpress alongside ephemera from the period and pictures from American photojournalists Lawrence Schiller and Ted Streshinsky.

Collector’s Edition (No. 201–1,968), each numbered and signed by Tom Wolfe

In Full Freaking Day-Glo

Tom Wolfe’s journey to the nexus of ’60s counterculture
In 1964, famed writer Ken Kesey and his band of Merry Pranksters set off across America on a “Transcontinental Bus Tour,” headed for the New York World’s Fair, drinking (still perfectly legal) LSD-laced orange juice along the way. Kesey’s journey, in the company of his Merry Pranksters, lies at the heart of The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, an as-if-first-hand account of the group’s antics and ethos by Tom Wolfe, wunderkind of the New Journalism movement. Celebrated as a classic of American literature as well as the hippie movement, the text explores both the esoteric experience of hallucinogens and fundamental societal shifts of 1960s America.

In this Collector’s Edition, signed by Tom Wolfe, an abridged Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test is published in traditional letterpress, with facsimile reproductions of Wolfe’s manuscript pages, as well as Ken Kesey’s jailhouse journals, handbills, and underground magazines of the period. Interweaving the prose and ephemera are photographic essays from Lawrence Schiller, whose coverage of the acid scene for Life magazine helped inspire Wolfe to write his story, and Ted Streshinsky, who accompanied Wolfe while reporting for the New York Herald Tribune.

These photographs—together with those of poet Allen Ginsberg and other photographers who covered the scene—paint a vivid picture of the counterculture world that set Wolfe’s scene: acid parties near “capsule corner” in Hollywood, the hippie-filled streets of Haight-Ashbury, the abandoned pie factory the Pranksters called home, and the infamous Acid Tests, Kool-Aid and all.

Marking the year of original publication, The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test is limited to 1,968 signed copies, including:

Collector’s Edition of 1,768 numbered copies (No. 201–1,968), each numbered and signed by Tom Wolfe, featuring:
  • Silk-screened hardcover with an embossed paper case
  • Letterpress printed text on a natural uncoated paper
  • Facsimile reproductions of Tom Wolfe’s manuscript pages and other period ephemera

Two Art Editions of 100 copies each (No. 1–200), both signed by Tom Wolfe and with a photographic print signed by Lawrence Schiller.
The author

Tom Wolfe (1931–2018) is the author of a dozen books, among them such contemporary classics as The Bonfire of the Vanities, The Right Stuff, and I Am Charlotte Simmons.

The photographers

Lawrence Schiller began his career as a photojournalist for Life, Time, and Paris Match, photographing some of the most iconic figures of the 1960s, from Marilyn Monroe to Barbra Streisand, from Ali and Patterson to Redford and Newman. His book projects include five New York Times best sellers, Marilyn & Me, Barbra, and the Pulitzer Prize–winning book, The Executioner’s Song, by Norman Mailer. He has directed or produced 20 motion pictures, including the documentaries The American Dreamer and the Oscar–winning The Man Who Skied Down Everest. Among his films for television, The Executioner’s Song and Peter the Great won five Emmys.

Ted Streshinsky (1923–2003) was a photojournalist best known for his coverage of the social and political turmoil of the 1960s and ’70s in California, from migrant worker strikes to antiwar protests. His wide-ranging portrayal of the counterculture in San Francisco included the hippies, and Ken Kesey and his Merry Pranksters on the high-voltage night of the Acid Test Graduation.

Tom Wolfe. The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. Photographs by Lawrence Schiller & Ted Streshinsky
Edition of 1,768
Hardcover in a slipcase, letterpress-printed text, two different paper stocks, and tip-ins, 9.4 x 13.4 in., 6.57 lb, 356 pages
ISBN 978-3-8365-5210-3
Edition: English
Tom Wolfe. The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. Photographs by Lawrence Schiller & Ted Streshinsky (Limited Edition)
Tom Wolfe.
The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test.
Photographs by Lawrence Schiller & Ted Streshinsky
Edition of 1,768
US$ 350
Tom Wolfe. The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. Photographs by Lawrence Schiller & Ted Streshinsky (Limited Edition)