Lost at Sea: The Jon Ronson Mysteries

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Lost at Sea: The Jon Ronson Mysteries

Lost at Sea: The Jon Ronson Mysteries

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I've been a fan of Ronson's written work since coming across Them some years ago, his style of writing always seems to bring the subject alive without indulging in any deep seated judgement. Whether he is following a religious group that wants to donate their kidneys, an ex-cult leader that is now big in the business world teaching influencing others, looking through Stanley Kubrick’s estate, or interviewing Margaret Keane about the theft of her artwork….

Ronson paints himself as a cowardly, neurotic type, but his subject matter tells another story, and he’s got more guts than I do.

Send them to my home, mail them, attach them to carrier pigeons, I don't care how you do it, but give me more of these books. The best part about this collection is that, with every article, you learn interesting trivia about many different subjects. If you haven't come across Ronson yet then you might like his writing if the weird and wonderful interests you or if you like the documentary style of Louis Theroux (who Ronson is inevitably compared with). To some extent, that turned out to be true--the ICP interview is still probably my favorite piece--but for the most part it's a pretty gentle descent. Or at least, that's what I'm getting from passages where Ronson notes that "there is no statute of limitations for underage sex--or for sexual assaults" but then candidly tells us: "In one e-mail, [King] asked me if I would consider it fair if, say, Mick Jagger was arrested today for having sex with a fifteen-year-old girl in 1970.

While parts of “Lost at Sea” have been published in Ronson’s other books - more than half have been printed in “Out of the Ordinary” and all but one have been printed in “What I Do” – and numerous other articles have appeared in GQ magazine and the Guardian newspaper, for those who’ve not read Jon Ronson extensively, this is an excellent collection of his journalism in one handy volume.

At the North Pole, they receive letters from Santa; these letters are then answered by students and townspeople. The humour and Jon's sly takes on the observed situations were fine at first, bringing on the odd chuckle, but began to grate on me as time went on. Ronson brilliantly investigates the way that those least able to carry debt, are deluged with offers to borrow money. Unlike Ronson's previous books of (if I remember Jon Stewart's phrase correctly) "satirical investigative journalism," Lost at Sea is more anthology than narrative, with the only unifying theme being that people are just really damned strange. North Pole is unique as a town where it is Christmas 365 days of the year and everything in the town is Christmas themed.

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