This is a fabulously funny tale of the author's unbelievably wacky up-bringing. Wild beyond belief at times but anyone who has been unfortunate to have met the type of shrink that his family ran into can relate. Some of the lower ratings numbers probably come from the fact that the author openly discusses his own homosexuality and describes some male/male sex scenes.
This was quite possibly the worst reading of an audio book I have ever listened to. At times, it seemed Burroughs was either nodding off or as bored as I was by his own writing. Scarcely any inflection or variance in the character's "voices", not an ounce of enthusiasm, and he seemed like he was in a hurry to finish it. I know I was! I wouldn't have even finished it at all if I hadn't paid for it.
I went ahead and got this book because I thought that all of the bad reviews might be due to people being conservative or homophobic... But no. It was Sooooooo Bad. Augusten Burroughs is a the worst narrator I've heard yet, and the content was just gross and self indulgent.
I am reading this for a book club so I'm finishing it despite the narration! Listening to this reminds me of talking with an autistic client I used to work for. I really wish I'd bought this on paper rather than in audio!
I had high hopes for this book, having heard so much about it. Whiny, self-centered, and self-important are the attributes of Burroughs' autobiographical introspective. While the details are rich, the characters are mere two-dimensional images that don't lend to much connection between reader and tale. There is a fine line between good story telling and self-indulgence in autobiographical writing. Unfortunately, this falls on the latter side of that line.
I found this very disturbing. I have a hard time recommending this book. I would have put it down if it were an actual book and not an audiobook. I did appreciate the "What are they doing now" part at the end. I have not seen the movie. I do wonder how/why it was chosen to become a movie. This is my opinion and I might be the lone ranger of this opinion.
Say something about yourself!
The author is definitely a talented writer, but what he is writing about is disgusting for me to comprehend. I hate to read about human’s dirt. I understand it’s real and exist somewhere around me behind closed doors, but it makes me even more upset. I probably will finish to listen this book, just because I bought it and have a habit to finish books, but it is definitely not my “cup of tea”. Descriptions of nasty houses with cockroaches, ugly people with their relationships are so graphic (how I said, he is a talented writer) that it makes me nauseous all way through. It is not funny or hilarious reading, maybe only for people who get excited from this kind of distasteful dirt. I feel sorry for these people and the author, who did not resist to it, but accepted and became a part of this havoc of uncivilized existence.
I read a previous review about this book being gross, and thought the reviewer was maybe a little narrow minded. Congratulating myself on being worldly wise, I pressed the download button, but you know what this book really is gross. I am not sure if I was more disturbed by the unhygenic kitchen conditions or the authors 'supposed to be amusing description's' of his 14 year old self being coerced to have anal sex with his much older boyfriend. This could have been a very heroic portrayal of triumph coming from an abusive childhood - but the author tried write humorously about some things that just arent humorous however clever the prose. Before downloading this book I had already listened to Magical Thinking, which was enjoyable. If you like David Sedaris consider downloading Magical Thinking, but personally I would suggest you give Running with Scissors a miss.
This book was great- and it was also great to hear it read by the author! Its so funny, I was laughing out loud in some parts. Kind of strange at times but fun to read. (not for people who get grossed out easily) I definitely recommend it.
When I first read the back of the book at Borders, the story looked morbid and sad. I immediately put it down, even though I knew the book had good buzz. Then I saw the trailer for the movie version that is coming out this October and it looked amazing. Based on the trailer, I bought the audiobook. It is funny, poignant, and with hilarious pop-culture references and self-aware irony. I was listening at the gym and laughed out loud while on the treadmill. I never wanted it to end. Excellent narration by an excellent author. I just bought his next book, "Dry." Enjoy!