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Beamish Boy: A Memoir

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating Details  ·  31 Ratings  ·  13 Reviews
NOTE ON PRICE: A percentage of proceeds from the sale of each book are going to support 3 non-profit organizations!!

Beamish Boy (I am not my story): A Memoir of Recovery & Awakening by Albert Flynn DeSilver

." . .A beautifully written memoir. . .poignant and inspirational, comical and terrifying!"


"I was raised in a clock tower with bats in the belfry." So begins,
Paperback, 264 pages
Published June 30th 2012 by The Owl Press (first published March 29th 2012)
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(showing 1-30 of 155)
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Bonna Hardy
Aug 05, 2012 Bonna Hardy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads

I loved this Memoir.

I will admit something. When I saw first saw this book on the goodreads giveaway list I had no idea who Albert Flynn Desilver was. I just noticed the title and thought "Oh...Beamish Boy...jabberwocky!" I did read the description and saw it was a memoir..most people I'm sure would have passed it over if they didn't recognize the name of the author...But I thought it would be great to read about someones life BEFORE I look into what they do. So I wouldn't have an idea in my
Apr 30, 2013 Riya rated it liked it
I am a huge fan of memoirs and I am glad I got a chance to read this one via Goodreads Giveaways. Albert Desilver has such a beautiful way of writing. There are many humorous moments in this book such as the parts about his tyrannical German governess. I really enjoyed reading this memoir and I would definitely recommend it to other people.
Sharon Lippincott
May 15, 2012 Sharon Lippincott rated it it was amazing
Shelves: memoir
Albert Flynn DeSilver was not always a beamish boy. If this book were fiction rather than memoir, the opening chapter is enough to make you wonder if he’d live long enough to even flicker. After getting my attention, DeSilver deftly backtracked to describe his emotionally bleak childhood in the Bell Tower, an architecturally unique abode with an abundance of bats — in the belfry and elsewhere — under the wary eye of “Das Hell Frau,” otherwise known as Miss Hedy, the family’s German-Swiss governe ...more
Mar 21, 2013 Kristina rated it liked it
I thought this was a well written memoir of a very tumultuous life. An angry German nanny and emotionally absent alcoholic parents lead to early anger problem and adolescent drug and alcohol use, which leads to heavier drugs and more alcohol that leads to hospitals trips and bad relationships, until finally acceptance, forgiving, and enlightenment. You've read it before. This book however was one of the better written memoirs that I've read.

I have trouble finding anything more to say for the sim
Sep 10, 2013 Malory rated it really liked it
Desilvers jaunty little memoir, Beamish Boy, settles on a pleasant narrative of twilight transformations, instructed by a voice both artful and untethered; theres a whisper of pedantry, which, when given track, is willfully apparent cigarettes, in particular, are gruesomely bedeviled, a tiny caveat of peculiar annoyance to this reader, whose unbothered predilection for these carcinogenic delights is almost ambrosial. The small scrapings aside, this is a good, well-manicured piece of writing. De ...more
I loved this. A delightful adventure by a person slightly younger than me, facing real issues, and getting through some pretty rough times.
Oct 08, 2012 Amy rated it liked it
What a strange life experience Albert Flynn Desilver has lived! But for a poet and artist do we expect much else from someone who can catalogue their life from a childhood in a clock tower to adulthood with such flourishes. It’s interesting to read about someone who I knew nothing of and seemingly now know intimately through his or her own words. It fascinates me to read how a writer’s life has shaped his work and from reading Beamish Boy it would be impossible for Desilver’s life experiences no ...more
Karen Benke
Jun 22, 2012 Karen Benke rated it it was amazing
Well written and conceived, at turns heart breaking and laugh out loud funny, I adore the quirky descriptions and dialog of this Beamish Boy plus fell in love with the author's mother even though she is the cause of so much pain for the narrator. I root for DeSilver all the way through that he can beat the alcohol addiction odds. This memoir does what all good memoirs do for me, make me want to figure out how the author transformed pain into art. Then I want to pick up a pen and get back to work ...more
Sep 18, 2012 Phyllis rated it it was amazing
Okay, I might be a bit biased as Al's oldest sister Margaret (aka, Maggie) was one of my closest friends growing up... But this is a truly compelling and beautifully written story of their home, their family, and what has shaped the adults Al, Mag, and Serena have become. Thanks to Al for the skill and bravery to share it all (and I mean ALL!) and to all of you for being such wonderful people in my life.
David Jedeikin
Oct 14, 2012 David Jedeikin rated it really liked it
A gorgeous, colorful tale of one man's fall and redemption. A grand story, zigzagging from wealthy-wannabe Connecticut to alcoholism to psychedelic-cultish "therapy." All in all, a great read.
Laura Dietz
Jan 04, 2015 Laura Dietz rated it it was ok
Well-written in spots and sometimes hilarious, but the pace was "off" at times. A bit self-indulgent.
Albert Desilver
May 06, 2012 Albert Desilver rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
See what Kirkus and others had to say and read an excerpt at

Apr 06, 2013 Cathleen rated it liked it
A nicely done memoir about pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps.
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Jun 15, 2016
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Addiction, transformation,and letting go 1 3 Sep 29, 2012 10:38AM  
Albert Flynn DeSilver is an internationally published poet, memoirist, novelist, speaker, and workshop leader. He served as Marin County’s very first Poet Laureate from 2008-2010. His work has appeared in more than 100 literary journals worldwide including ZYZZYVA, New American Writing, Hanging Loose, Jubilat, Exquisite Corpse, Jacket (Australia), Poetry Kanto (Japan), Van Gogh’s Ear (France), and ...more
More about Albert Flynn Desilver...

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