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Original Essays | June 20, 2014

Lauren Owen: IMG The Other Vampire

It's a wild and thundery night. Inside a ramshackle old manor house, a beautiful young girl lies asleep in bed. At the window, a figure watches... Continue »


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Ann Haynes has commented on (2) products.

The Worst Day of My Life, So Far (Harvest Book) by M A Harper
The Worst Day of My Life, So Far (Harvest Book)

Ann Haynes, September 1, 2011

"The Worst Day of My Life So Far" by M.A. Harper is written in the first person by a middle aged woman caring for her mother, a former southern belle type who is gradually succumbing to Alzheimer's. Along with that, the daughter is dealing with her own mid-life crises while feeling isolated and stir crazy in the tiny Lousianna town where she grew up. What I loved about this book was the humor the narrator was able to bring to the situation, definitely of the gallows variety, while never sacrificing depth or respect for each character. This is not an easy subject, and never does Harper shy away from it. Her once beautiful mother is reduced to dependancy, and Harper never belittles her for it, even in the worst moments of dementia. And the ending delivers both drama and closure, aka acceptance. I had a hard time putting this one down.
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Acid Christ: Ken Kesey, LSD, and the Politics of Ecstasy by Mark Christensen
Acid Christ: Ken Kesey, LSD, and the Politics of Ecstasy

Ann Haynes, October 21, 2010

I loved this review, but I didn't rate it a 5 because the reviewer neglected to highlight one little word: addiction. He spoke of it, but he spoke of it without understanding it fully. Asking "why did he veer from his writing career? Why did he do acid and drink?" is missing the point. He veered from his writing career BECAUSE he did acid and drank. And Kesey did acid and drank, in my humble opinion, and based on the massive amounts of evidence (ie: his long years of acid use and drinking, duh),because he was hooked by the evil barb of addiction. All Kesey's talk of "my life is my work" is mostly a rationalization to explain the monkey on his back. Not that he didn't make his life his work--he was genious enough to do it. But he had no choice: he was hooked.

Having said all that, I love Kesey's work and feel he did the best he could given his problem. It would be a clearer review (and maybe a clearer book too, although I have not read it yet and don't know)if the writer tackled this issue. Sad to see such a great talent blind-sided by such a nasty, and tragically common, affliction.
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