**spoiler alert** Yeah, it was entertaining, the way a Lifetime movie is entertaining. I read it in about three hours, and I'm a slow reader. Scheeres**spoiler alert** Yeah, it was entertaining, the way a Lifetime movie is entertaining. I read it in about three hours, and I'm a slow reader. Scheeres's writing is catchy, if a bit high falutin' in parts. I had to occasionally put this book down, roll my eyes, and laugh.
Such dysfunction! Every childhood abuse you can imagine is superficially touched upon here. Scheeres was molested by her bad adopted black brother (whereabouts unknown), Scheeres's dead, good, adopted black brother was beaten like a slave by her evil, abusive father (a two dimensional character if ever there was one) and tried to commit suicide, and her mother was mean (and barely mentioned except that she gave money to missionaries, and once screenplay-ly rapped upon a window when Scheeres and her brother were having picturesque fun spraying each other with a hose in their garden).
All of this dysfunction made Scheeres become a teen alcoholic, a dependency she mentioned casually when it served to further her plot, but which wasn't mentioned once she went to Jesus camp.
The town in which she lives is so xenophobic the prescence of two black boys is cause for bad bullies (including authority figures like teachers) to frequently abuse her and her good black brother (but not the bad black brother, he was removed from the abuse because he was so abusive himself), yet Scheeres presented a veritable Rainbow Coalition of ethnic and religious minorities who attended her school, with which she of course befriended and even loved, because she's an underdog, too, and oh, so much more enlightened than anyone else who lived in her town.
Scheeres volunteered to go to some religious camp to which her evil parents sent her good, adopted black brother because her parents were evil like that, and she did a passable job describing it, but only because she has read many military and possibly Holocaust memoirs.
It is impossible to verify any of the shit that Scheeres said happened in this concentration camp of a religious retreat, nor to verify any of the myriad of abuses she says happened to her before she went to the Jesus concentration camp. It is impossible to verify any of the shit she said happened to her, ever.
I can believe she had a black brother who died in a car accident. I can believe she went to some Jesus camp. That's all I can believe. This isn't as made up a "memoir" as "A Million Little Pieces", but it's at least as false as "Running With Scissors". ...more
Burroughs has a good, engaging writing style, but most of the events and people he describes are too insane to be taken seriously. He spends a lot ofBurroughs has a good, engaging writing style, but most of the events and people he describes are too insane to be taken seriously. He spends a lot of time describing how bizarre every person in his life was, but almost no time describing how having a mother who was routinely hospitalized for mental illness affected his life. He describes in great detail the "hows" of his sex life with a pedophile, but no time describing how such a traumatic experience shaped him as an adult. Childhood trauma after childhood trauma is glossed over in favor of wacky stories about wacky people. It rings insincere. But it's easy to read (I read it in three hours) and occasionally funny. ...more
Theroux walks (mostly) along the entire coast of Great Britain, including North Ireland. The passages where Theroux complains about things are the besTheroux walks (mostly) along the entire coast of Great Britain, including North Ireland. The passages where Theroux complains about things are the best ones. He is often hilariously brutal when describing towns and people he finds objectionable. He took this trip in 1982 during the Falklands war, which he used as a tool to describe the political climate of the UK at that time. It's good reading, especially the bits about North Ireland. ...more