This is a rich and revealing book that I always recommend to anyone trying to grasp the contradictory figure that was Timothy Leary - not least because many of its subjects are still struggling to grasp exactly what hit them when Leary entered their lives. Highlights for me include the essays by Ram Dass, Robert Anton Wilson and Ralph Metzner, as well as William Burroughs' ability to use a few brief words so well. Winona Ryder's eulogy is also terrific -- it has since been included in Copeland's book on the greatest eulogies of our time, and I liked it so much I used it as the foreword to my own biography on Leary, 'I Have America Surrounded'.
As Forte writes in his introduction, this is "not a biography of Leary, nor an in-depth study of his ideas", and as such the critical review on this page by R. Goldstein seems to have missed the point of the book. Forte is not attempting to be a 'cheerleader' or promote his 'thesis', as is claimed, but instead provides a forum where those who knew Leary could record their memories and reminiscences. True, the majority are positive and loving, but this is no reason to criticize the book. The fact is Leary was deeply loved by many - which is something that those who condemn his character find it convenient to overlook. For this reason the book is an important record, but perhaps more importantly it is those who knew him best who often have the most revealing insights - and this is why the book is so valuable.