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Interviews | March 17, 2014

Shawn Donley: IMG Peter Stark: The Powells.com Interview

Peter StarkIt's hard to believe that 200 years ago, the Pacific Northwest was one of the most remote and isolated regions in the world. In 1810, four years... Continue »
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Neil Elliott has commented on (1) product.

The Adderall Diaries: A Memoir of Moods, Masochism, and Murder by Stephen Elliott
The Adderall Diaries: A Memoir of Moods, Masochism, and Murder

Neil Elliott, May 28, 2009

Great Read From Bestselling Author

The author is one of the great writers of our times, and his 12 books have sold millions of copies around the world. In times to come, people will wonder that such a man existed in our age. He has been called, "a combination of Francois Villon, James T. Farrell, Maxim Gorky, Victor Hugo, and Dosteovski--on their best days!" And both the New York Times and an editor at Vanity Fair called his last novel, HAPPY BABY, "...the most beautiful and intelligent book ever written..." His stepmother called him "strong, dependable, and giving" when he was 13, and you can see those qualities in his work, as well as a gift for irony.

His great uncle Simon Frug was the last Natonal Jewish Poet of Russia under the Tsar Nicholas, but he grew up in an upper middle class home, in the wealthy Chicago enclave of Indian Boundary. At 14 he larked about the streets with his pals, doing drugs and alcohol. His father protected him from drug dealers who threatened him. At 15 his father let him live in a Jewish Childrens Bureau group home near their house with 6 other teens. He finished college without debt thanks to his dad, who also gave him free apartments, paid for graduate school, and paid his gambling debts. Then he started writing books in which he claimed to be an oppressed sad person. In these books he is always telling us his dad is a bad person, but is not very precise about why.

Nonetheless he writes beautifully, out of a deep compulsion that has nothing to do with free will. As Isaac Bashevis Singer once said, "Of course I believe in free will--I have no choice!"

But with sweetness, goodness, and genius like this, who cares what's born from compulsion and what isn't?

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