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Devil in the Details: Scenes from an Obsessive Girlhood | [Jennifer Traig]

Devil in the Details: Scenes from an Obsessive Girlhood

The struggles and humiliations of adolescence are told in an unflinching, funny, surprisingly universal tale of one good Jewish girl's battle with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
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Publisher's Summary

The struggles and humiliations of adolescence are told in an unflinching, funny, surprisingly universal tale of one good Jewish girl's battle with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.

Adhering to the stringent restrictions of ancient Jewish laws gave author Jennifer Traig's Obsessive Compulsive Disorder something of a purpose: Instead of simply washing her hands, she was purifying herself of sin; rather than zealously patting an item, she was laying on hands. At first amused, later baffled, and finally pragmatic, her parents drew up a contract limiting hand-washing, altar-building, and other rituals, but it was the amendment allowing Traig's sister to divulge the odd behavior to the world at large that put a stop to the compulsions. For a while, anyway.

With all the harrowing candor of Running with Scissors and the irresistible details of A Girl Named Zippy, Traig has created a memoir that captures the struggles of OCD sufferers without a hint of self-pity; at the same time, her descriptions of an extraordinary adolescence are smart, no-holds-barred honest, and exceptionally funny.

©2004 Jennifer Traig; (P)2005 HighBridge Company

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  •  
    Dr.Watson 07-17-08
    Dr.Watson 07-17-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    "Wonderful"

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book and personally find the writing genius. Devil in the details has made it to my favorite books of all time list!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pete Hines, OR, United States 07-20-06
    Pete Hines, OR, United States 07-20-06 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    32
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    "Fantastic"

    This is one of the best books I've assimilated in a while. Traig writes a hilariously funny account of her life, which should be made into a movie (I'm thinking of Amy Sedaris as Jenny). If you enjoy a good laugh and actually know how to detect and appreciate sarcasm and off-color humor I highly recommend this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Purchaser san francisco 03-13-06
    Purchaser san francisco 03-13-06 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    7
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    "i blame the narrator"

    I think this could have been a much better book if it had a different narrator. She should have listened to some david sedaris for some pointers. Her inflections become grating and her delivery sounds like bad julia sweeney comedy. OCD can be funny (as proven by sedaris), disinterested parents can be funny (as proven by sedaris) and i just wonder if this book may have been funny and engaging if had been given an appropriate narrator.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrew New York, NY, United States 03-01-06
    Andrew New York, NY, United States 03-01-06 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Hours of Slapstick"

    The idea behind this book is a good one-- a young girl coming to terms with and struggling against her own obsessions and compulsions. But Jennifer Traig somehow manages to create a memoir composed of hours upon hours of stand-up comedy. Listening to this book is like being subjected to a never-ending set at The Laugh Factory. Sadly, the reader has problems with accents as well-- it's clear she speaks some French, but all other characters end up sounding Indian, even the Irish ones.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jan 03-23-06
    Jan 03-23-06
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
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    Overall
    "Whining Sarcasm"

    If you can tolerate 7 1/2 hours of whining and sarcasm, this book is for you! The author seems to trudge along the same never-ending path of self absorption. There are a few funny spots, but after about 2 hours, you just want to slap her and tell her to get a grip.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
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