An intense, instantly engaging, hard-hitting, yet beautifully written memoir of a life beyond the brink that touches every nerve.
James Frey is originally from Ohio. His books A Million Little Pieces, My Friend Leonard, Bright Shiny Morning and The Final Testament of the Holy Bible have all been bestsellers around the world. He is married and lives in New York.
For as long as he can remember, Frey has had within him something that he calls "the Fury," a bottomless source of anger and rage that he has kept at bay since he was 10 by obliterating his consciousness with alcohol and drugs. When this memoir begins, the author is 23 and is wanted in three states. He has a raw hole in his cheek big enough to stick a finger through, he's missing four teeth, he's covered with spit blood and vomit, and without ID or any idea where the airplane he finds himself on is heading. It turns out his parents have sent him to a drug rehab center in Minnesota. From the start, Frey refuses to surrender his problem to a 12-step program or to victimize himself by calling his addictions a disease. He demands to be held fully accountable for the person he is and the person he may become. If Frey is a victim, he comes to realize, it's due to nothing but his own bad decisions. Wyman's reading of Frey's terse, raw prose is ideal. His unforgettable performance of Frey's anesthesia-free dental visit will be recalled by listeners with every future dentist appointment. His lump-in-the-throat contained intensity, wherein he neither sobs nor howls with rage but appears a breath away from both, gives listeners a palpable glimpse of the power of addiction and the struggle for recovery. Simultaneous release with the Doubleday hardcover (Forecasts, Mar. 10). (May) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
'Excellent ! Frey's storytelling feels compulsive, involuntary ! poignant and tragic. The forthcoming film will almost certainly be a cult hit ! The good thing about Frey is that he writes as if he needs to; I hope his new compulsion thrives' -- William Leith, Spectator 'James Frey's utterly mesmerising account ! [is] easily the most remarkable non-fiction book about drugs and drug taking since Hunter S Thompson's Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas ! As a memoir, it is almost mythic. You can imagine it made epic by Martin Scorsese, the auteur of wayward American maleness in all its extremity ! Utterly compulsive' -- Observer 'Frey really can write. Brilliantly. And if you don't think so, f*** you' -- Evening Standard 'Clear sighted and intellectually honest' -- Literary Review 'A heartbreaking memoir ! inspirational and essential' -- Bret Easton Ellis 'This book is definitely going to be huge ! There is no question that he's a good writer. As soon as you start reading the book, Frey's voice rings out. It's clear and sharp and turbocharged ! We love rehab memoirs. This is a good one. It might even be a great one' -- Independent 'An extraordinary and deeply moving book that will make you think about family, friendship, love, religion, death and perhaps most of all, the human spirit' -- Irish Sunday Independent 'Startling and ultimately breath taking' -- Kirkus Reviews 'Horribly honest and funny ! Read this immediately' -- Gus Van Sant 'Harrowing, poetic and rather magnificent' -- FHM 'James Frey spent ten years addicted to alcohol and crack before going into rehab at the age of 23. This unrelenting memoir of his recovery spares no detail. Luckily, he is a good writer -- indulgent and uncompromising' -- Metro 'Frey is selfish, egocentric, violent and pompous ... What redeems this insufferably bad mannered book is that, at the end of the day, Frey can write. Brilliantly' -- Scotsman 'Frey's writing style vividly conveys the horrors of addiction ... dark humour and sharp observations are evidence of a keen intelligence and an unusual strength of character ... a totally absorbing book' -- The Magistrate 20040201 'Harrowing and unflinching ! This is not a book about drugs but about their aftermath ! Though definitely not for the faint hearted, Frey is often darkly and self deprecatingly funny. This is, in essence, a story of redemption and an incredibly moving one. This is a great book' -- Waterstone's Books Quarterly 20040201 'This book is a raging, brilliant debut.' -- Waterstone's Books Quarterly 20040322 'Crafted from genuine, raw emotion.' -- Irish Examiner 20040322 'Blisteringly written ! The prose is superb' -- Daily Express 20050826 'James Frey propelled the memoir of dysfunctional life to the top of the bestseller lists' -- Daily Telegraph 20060523 'Frey's book combined high quality drug porn with memorable characters and a strong narrative arc that describes a modern version of Rake's Progress.' -- Druglink Magazine 20060601 'The last remarkable book I read! I couldn't put it down.' -- Q Magazine, Dave Matthews 20060701
An alcoholic and crack addict so physically mauled by his indulgences that doctors marveled that he was still alive, Frey finally cleaned himself up at age 23. Here he takes full responsibility for nearly destroying himself. Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Adult/High School-Frey's high school and college years are a blur of alcohol and drugs, culminating in a full-fledged crack addiction at age 23. As the book begins, his fed-up friends have convinced an airline to let him on the plane and shipped him off to his parents, who promptly put him in Hazelden, the rehabilitation clinic with the greatest success rate, 20 percent. Frey doesn't shy away from the gory details of addiction and recovery; all of the bodily fluids make major appearances here. What really separates this title from other rehab memoirs, apart from the author's young age, is his literary prowess. He doesn't rely on traditional indentation, punctuation, or capitalization, which adds to the nearly poetic, impressionistic detail of parts of the story. Readers cannot help but feel his sickness, pain, and anger, which is evident through his language. Ken Kesey's One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest (Viking, 1962) seems an apt comparison for this work-Frey maintains his principles and does not respect authority at all if it doesn't follow his beliefs. And fellow addicts are as much, if not more, help to him than the clinicians who are trying to preach the 12 steps, which he does not intend to follow in his path to sobriety. This book is highly recommended for teens interested in the darker side of human existence.-Jamie Watson, Enoch Pratt Free Library, Baltimore Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.