We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access .
 >   > 
And the Hippos Were Boiled in Their Tanks Audiobook

And the Hippos Were Boiled in Their Tanks

Regular Price:$12.57
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Publisher's Summary

More than 60 years ago, William S. Burroughs and Jack Kerouac, two novice writers at the dawn of their careers, sat down to write a novel about the summer of 1944, when one of their friends killed another in a moment of brutal and tragic bloodshed. Alternating chapters, they pieced together a hard-boiled tale of bohemian New York during World War II, full of drugs and obsession, art and violence.

The manuscript, named after a line from a news story about a fire at a circus, was rejected by publishers and confined to a filing cabinet for decades. Now, for the first time, this legendary collaboration between two of the 20th century's most influential writers is being released. Both a fascinating piece of American literary history and an engrossing, atmospheric novel, it brings to life a shocking murder at the dawn of the Beat Generation.

Walk the Beat with Jack Kerouac and William S. Burroughs.

©2008 the Estate of Jack Kerouac and the William S. Burroughs Trust; (P)2008 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (117 )
5 star
 (57)
4 star
 (37)
3 star
 (13)
2 star
 (2)
1 star
 (8)
Overall
4.3 (81 )
5 star
 (42)
4 star
 (24)
3 star
 (12)
2 star
 (1)
1 star
 (2)
Story
4.3 (76 )
5 star
 (43)
4 star
 (20)
3 star
 (10)
2 star
 (0)
1 star
 (3)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Jeff Chicago, IL, USA 08-20-09
    Jeff Chicago, IL, USA 08-20-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    99
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Pre-Beat Lit, instant classic!"

    I was skeptic... lost book? Burroughs and Kerouac? Does the phrase "too good to be true" come to mind. Yet, to my delight, this could turn out to be one of my favorite pieces of midcentury counter-culture lit. Jack and William take turns with chapters, allowing a really neat multi-perspective view of the controversial plot. Ray does a great job reading, as usual. The epilogue is a great treat, the true story behind the novel.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Scott 08-30-15
    Scott 08-30-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
    22
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    24
    23
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not a great story."

    Put into the context of a biography written many years before the characters/authors of the Beat Generation, this story is interesting.

    As a stand alone piece, the story is not very good.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Allison LINCOLN, NE, United States 02-05-12
    Allison LINCOLN, NE, United States 02-05-12 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    51
    15
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "underrated!"
    If you could sum up And the Hippos Were Boiled in Their Tanks in three words, what would they be?

    historical, shocking, honest


    What did you like best about this story?

    The movement between chapters made it impossible to stop listening.


    What does Ray Porter bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I felt like I was listening to the authors telling their story.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    YES!


    Any additional comments?

    Dare I say this may be my favorite Kerouac?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ashley New Baltimore, MI, United States 12-13-11
    Ashley New Baltimore, MI, United States 12-13-11 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    43
    13
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I tried."

    I wish I had read the other reviews before I bought this. It's awful. I can't even finish it and I ALWAYS finish any book I've started. It just makes no sense; it's very difficult to follow along.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Mr. C. G. Moore
    3/14/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "flat, uninteresting and dissapointing"
    What disappointed you about And the Hippos Were Boiled in Their Tanks?

    if you've read the schpeel and know it's about a murder then that is the only interesting bit spoilt, it is also dealt with in the last 20mins. This is not hard-boiled and full of sex and violence but a few dreary fumblings and a murder that is bearly mentioned. It doesnt tick any box, not pulpy enough to be pulp, not artistic or poetic enough to be art. The 2 writer's different viewpoints and styles is a little interesting but nothing really happens. There is a great story to be told, just look up the real murder on wikipedia. And if wikipedia do a better job than, not one, but two writers you are doing something wrong. Love the title but this should have never seen the light of day


    What will your next listen be?

    tbc


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    It was all just aimless and I was just waiting to get to the murder that was spoilt in the blurb


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from And the Hippos Were Boiled in Their Tanks?

    I would open with the murder (as promised on the back of the book), then present flashbacks to how it got to that point. The obsessions, the relationships between characters, the creepiness. Little things suggested in the beginning of the book, playing out to the final outcome. Things develop to a feverpitch, present it as a suspense novel. None of that is in this novel.


    Any additional comments?

    It could have been a Hitchcockian style thriller suspense, or a good character study, or an atmospheric portrayal of New York in 1944. But it is none of those.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.