Books That Made a Difference to Daniel Radcliffe

Who knew Harry Potter had such wide-ranging reading tastes?
Photo: Philip Friedman/Studio D

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas

304 pages; Modern Library
"This is one of the funniest books I've ever read, which is the main reason I recommend it to people," says Daniel Radcliffe, who was given Thompson's drug-fueled, madcap rumination on American culture in the 1960s as a 15th birthday present by a friend on the Potter set. "But there is a sadness in it as well. I think Thompson loved America despite himself, and this is a lament for the passing of a time that we'll never see again. He was such an intelligent and socially aware person; he knew even when he wrote this in 1971 that a decade like the '60s could not happen again. And it is kind of sad to read it now because I know I will never have the feeling of living in a time that fresh and with so few boundaries."
— As told to Naomi Barr

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