Chuck Klosterman X: A Highly Specific, Defiantly Incomplete History of the Early 21st Century

Blue Rider: Penguin. May 2017. 464p. ISBN 9780399184154. $27; ebk. ISBN 9780399184178. SOC SCI
OrangeReviewStarKlosterman (Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs; But What If We're Wrong) has written nine books and a slew of articles for newspapers, magazines, and online publications. This collection features his best pieces from the last ten years. Although a majority of the articles focus on music or sports, Klosterman also ruminates on literature, pop culture, death, and much more. Filtered through his literary sensibility are honest, critical, profound, and compulsively readable interviews with Jimmy Page, Taylor Swift, Kobe Bryant, and Tom Brady (to name a few). Each piece is a polished stone of insightful reportage. But Klosterman's work flirts closest with the sublime when he strays from the famous, including his retelling of an intense junior college basketball game in North Dakota, a conversation with a busboy in Tulsa, the infuriating demands of a forgotten NBA draft pick, and the evening of his father's death.
VERDICT A funny, thoughtful Greatest Hits album from a master of nonfiction, with standout tracks that will stand the test of time.
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