While this story remains fairly interesting because of the bizarre chain of events claimed by the author, the characters feel 2-Dimensional and I found myself rapidly losing sympathy. It is worth listening to, (be aware that descriptions are often graphic, but not gratuitously so) but not one I would enthusiastically recommend.
As a psychiatrist who has treated two people in my metropolitan area who lived with their psychiatist in the 60's, this is not fiction. It is told with Burroughs' tough, but funny humor. He has found a way to transform his tragic circumstances in a way that others can understand, using the with and humor that must have been part of his survival!
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.
I didn't know that this book was so sexually oriented. Way to grafic for a lot of listeners.
Some part seemed a little slow moving.
Nice voice and good inflection.
The author was too sexually explicit and had no resemblance to real life.
It reminds me of "1000 Little Pieces" and we know what happened with that book.
I rarely find that I dislike a book so much that I have to skip through parts. I had heard such a great things about Running With Scissors and was excited to have a new author to follow. Unfortunately, I was terribly disappointed. The characters in this book were disturbingly dysfunctional. It wasn't just that several parts were graphic, it was that they were violent and violating. I'm glad that Augusten Burroughs was able to grow up and find humor in it all but in the end I felt terribly sad for him. Fortunately for him, he has found success in his adult life as a writer and I'm one in a minority that didn't enjoy the book. Best of luck to him.
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.
This is an interesting and sometimes humorous account of an extremely disturbed and disturbing childhood. The characters were believable and intriguing in their extremes. For me, some parts were too graphic to comfortably read, but were easily scanned over.