"There were tales of dope fiends, of old debauchees who frequented hotels in search of pretty page-boys, of thefts and blackmail."
Orwell's tales of artistic endeavour and economic struggles make for a heady mix of grit and grime. Things go from bad to worse. Initially making do with an ever decreasing purse, living the hospitality lifestyle ( strangely the same today) and then finally ending up as a full blown tramp. His depictions of his struggles are visceral and strangely captivating.You can almost smell the sweat and cigarette butts.There is something so reminiscent of today, despite the book being published in 1933. What does that tell you? Oh we're all going to hell in a hand basket again clearly.
Anthony Bourdain's introduction is also stellar!
5 out of 5 people smell less than fresh without a shower.