• The Call of the Weird

  • Travels in American Subcultures
  • By: Louis Theroux
  • Narrated by: Louis Theroux
  • Length: 3 hrs and 48 mins
  • Abridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 06-05-07
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Pan Macmillan Publishers Ltd.
  • 4 out of 5 stars 4.0 (159 ratings)

Regular price: $14.01

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Publisher's Summary

Read by the author, this is Louis Theroux's hilarious and thought-provoking journey through weird America. For 10 years, Louis Theroux has been making programmes about off-beat characters on the fringes of US society. Now he revisits America and the people who have most fascinated him to try to discover what motivates them, why they believe the things they believe, and to find out what has happened to them since he last saw them. Along the way, Louis thinks about what drives him to spend so much time among weird people and considers whether he's learned anything about himself in the course of ten years working with them. Has he manipulated the people he's interviewed, or have they manipulated him?
From his Las Vegas base, Louis revisits the assorted dreamers and outlaws who have been his TV feeding ground. Attempting to understand a little about himself and the workings of his own mind, Louis considers questions such as: what is the difference between pathology and "normal" weirdness? Is there something particularly weird about Americans? What does it mean to be weird, or "to be yourself"? And do we choose our beliefs or do our beliefs choose us?
©2005 Louis Theroux (P)2005 Macmillan Publishers Ltd
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Critic Reviews

"Alternately fascinating and sad." ( Kirkus Reviews)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By James on 11-02-09

Short but good

I'm disappointed this book was a bit short. However, Louis is an excellent author and reader. He expertly gives each character a unique voice. The stories are facinating, but for adults only. I highly recommend.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Noam on 01-01-13

An absolutely fascinating listen

I'm a big fan of Louis' work and have watched the majority of his documentaries.

This was probably the reason I found myself so captivated by this title; Louis revisits a select number of memorable characters in a sort of "Where are they now?" type of quest.

He gives a succinct review of each character before describing the re-visitation, so you're not completely lost if you haven't watched his shows (though you really should).

Louis also provides very interesting insights in regard to the individuals and cultures he encounters and the occasional character imitations he performs are super adorable, too.

Definitely recommended.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By CA Weir on 06-26-07

One of my favourite downloads so far

If you love Louis, then what are you waiting for. I have his DVD box set of Weird Weekends at home and have always been fascinated and appalled with some of the excesses of humanity he's interviewed. Yet, I've always wanted to know...'What happened next?' Well, Call of the Weird will tell all...
This download, superbly and personally narrated by Louis, is HIGHLY recommended.

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19 of 20 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Susan Random on 10-24-17

The Call Of The Weird

This book only loses a star rating because it's abridged, but I think that it's a fantastic listen and complements Theroux's earlier documentaries. I particularly enjoyed the odder elements of the text.

Theroux really performs the book throughout and his different American accents are a pleasure to listen to.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Anonymous User on 07-06-17


it was great to hear some more personal thoughts from Louis in this auido book. I just wish it was longer!

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3 out of 5 stars
By Amazon Customer on 01-29-17

Not his best work

Is there anything you would change about this book?

If you have seen a lot of Louis work (and I have) you have to sit through him setting up every anecdote through a re-telling of the stories in his documentaries. In these sections, it seems like he is retelling it based on what details ended up on screen, and adding little in the way of new information or insights. As such, its a bit light on 'new' details for the avid fan.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

There were a few updates on past characters that changed my views on the original tv documentaries. The least interesting part was (again) the amount of pages dedicated to explaining the TV series original material, which felt redundant.

What about Louis Theroux’s performance did you like?

He is a likeable guy, but this telling lacked a little of the humour that he is known for in his interviews - i think he is at his best when he is reacting to scenarios, rather than just writing alone for a reader.

Could you see The Call of the Weird being made into a movie or a TV series? Who would the stars be?

Err.. Louis.

Any additional comments?

This book is only for big fans, and even then its a tad lackluster. I dont say this easily - I'm a tragic fan of Louis work, but I struggled to keep paying attention through this one.

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