Patrick O'Neil's Reviews > Pain Killers

Pain Killers by Jerry Stahl
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's review
Mar 15, 2009

really liked it

Jerry Stahl is a bit of a manic. Or maybe he's more of a smart-ass, or hell bent on histrionics. Having read Pain Killers, Stahl's newest work of fiction, it is hard to say exactly what frame of mind, personality disorder, or introverted social skill Stahl is channeling. Yet it is glaringly obvious why Stahl, a recovered heroin addict, chose opiates as his former drug of choice. If I were him I'd want something to slow it all down too. His mind appears to bounce around like a pubescent ADHD sufferer whose Adderall prescription has run out. Only it's been seventeen years since Stahl quit using, his mind has had way more than enough time to adjust to drug free thinking – and like anyone that has learned to cope with a mental health issue, Stahl has mastered what had perhaps once been a hindrance, morphing it into inspiration.

From the first sentence of Pain Killers, the pace is all out and over the top. Pop culture references, porn-star sexual innuendos, and hyperbole conspiracy theories come popping off the page like Stahl's suffering from Turrets syndrome and just can't help himself when he throws in one more smart-ass quip.

To read the rest of this review, please follow this link to The Sylvan Echo's Book Review page.

**Note: scroll down the page to the second review, thank you...


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