Patrick O'Neil's Reviews > Leaving Dirty Jersey: A Crystal Meth Memoir
Leaving Dirty Jersey: A Crystal Meth Memoir
by James Salant
by James Salant
Patrick O'Neil's review
Aug 22, 2009
I might be being a bit picky here. Being a dope-fiend memoir elitist and all. Yet, one would think if an author was writing their "tell-all-drug-addict-memoir," they'd at the very least have been a dope fiend longer than it took to get the book published. James Salant ran away from rehab and shot speed for a year, then wrote a book about it. Ok, sure, shooting speed sucks. Hanging out with speed freaks and ex-cons sucks. Endlessly masturbating to internet porn really has to suck. Even just the thought of actually living in a trailer park in some podunk town in SoCal sucks. But doing it for just a year justifies writing a memoir? Don't get me wrong, the misery of addiction shouldn't be measured by time or even quality. It's no fun no matter how you look at it. But the majority of the first hundred pages of Leaving Dirty Jersey is nothing but Salant retelling how many times he shot-up, with who, and how tweaked he got. I realize there's a good deal of repetition to a meth-head's existence, but man, oh man, enough is enough. To be absolutely honest I couldn't finish the book. I tired, god knows I tried. But Salant's voice sounded so sophomoric as to be unreliable that I was unmoved and didn't really care what the hell happened to him as it appeared that nothing but the same old tedious boredom of continuous meth use was on the menu. I'm surprised an editor didn't address this issues, but then again some people are interested in the superficial aspects of addiction - as just the lure of drug use seems justified to make for good reading. Yet the blurb on the back of the paperback compares it to Jim Carroll's Basketball Diaries??!! Which is totally absurd...
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