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The Night of the Gun: A Reporter Investigates the Darkest Story of His Life. His Own.

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The Night of the Gun: A Reporter Investigates the Darkest Story of His Life. His Own. Cover

ISBN13: 9781416541530
ISBN10: 1416541535
Condition: Standard
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Staff Pick

After years of sobriety, each of David Carr's daughters wrote a personal essay at college, and the stories they told about their lives didn't jibe with his memory. How much did he remember? How much did he ever know? Carr decided to report his past. The result: Carr is some kind of memoir superhero. "Drug Rehab Memoir Remakes the Genre," shouts the New York Observer.
Recommended by Dave, Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Do we remember only the stories we can live with?

The ones that make us look good in the rearview mirror? In The Night of the Gun, David Carr redefines memoir with the revelatory story of his years as an addict and chronicles his journey from crack-house regular to regular columnist for The New York Times. Built on sixty videotaped interviews, legal and medical records, and three years of reporting, The Night of the Gun is a ferocious tale that uses the tools of journalism to fact-check the past. Carr's investigation of his own history reveals that his odyssey through addiction, recovery, cancer, and life as a single parent was far more harrowing — and, in the end, more miraculous — than he allowed himself to remember. Over the course of the book, he digs his way through a past that continues to evolve as he reports it.

That long-ago night he was so out of his mind that his best friend had to pull a gun on him to make him go away? A visit to the friend twenty years later reveals that Carr was pointing the gun.

His lucrative side business as a cocaine dealer? Not all that lucrative, as it turned out, and filled with peril.

His belief that after his twins were born, he quickly sobered up to become a parent? Nice story, if he could prove it.

The notion that he was an easy choice as a custodial parent once he finally was sober? His lawyer pulls out the old file and gently explains it was a little more complicated than that.

In one sense, the story of The Night of the Gun is a common one — a white-boy misdemeanant lands in a ditch and is restored to sanity through the love of his family, a God of his understanding, and a support group that will go unnamed. But when the whole truth is told, it does not end there. After fourteen years — or was it thirteen? — Carr tried an experiment in social drinking. Double jeopardy turned out to be a game he did not play well. As a reporter and columnist at the nation's best newspaper, he prospered, but gained no more adeptness at mood-altering substances. He set out to become a nice suburban alcoholic and succeeded all too well, including two more arrests, one that included a night in jail wearing a tuxedo.

Ferocious and eloquent, courageous and bitingly funny, The Night of the Gun unravels the ways memory helps us not only create our lives, but survive them.

Review:

"3 stars. It's an odyssey you'll find hard to forget." Kim Hubbard, People

Review:

"[A] remarkable narrative of redemption...He writes with grace and precision...With grit and a recovering user's candor, Mr. Carr has written an arresting tale..." Edward Kosner, The Wall Street Journal

Review:

"The Night of the Gun is about as dark and murky as dark and murky get. And though it is one of the most eloquent accounts of the seduction and snare of addiction, what's gotten lost in the water-cooler discussion about Carr's misadventures — including drug peddling as well as his bout with cancer — is that this book, in its sharp, serrated prose, is a meditation on how memory works (but mostly how it doesn't), a man's obsessive effort to get at his life's true narrative using the skills he's honed as a reporter, the one piece of his life that didn't combust." George Lynell, L.A. Times

Review:

"After years of abuse, the memoir has found its white knight, galloping in to show how a personal story can be engrossing, shocking and true. Mr. Carr's book...practically issues a challenge to those current reigning kings — David Sedaris, Augusten Burroughs, Ishmael Beah — of the memoir genre: You get a video camera and tape recorder, and retrace the steps of your life. Will your story sound the same?...It adds up to a riveting, improbable story. More important, Mr. Carr has produced a work that stands to revive the excitement and thrill of reading about reporting. It's All the President's Men, but about a dude from Minnesota with a drug habit." New York Observer Review of Books

Review:

"The Night of the Gun, is the fierce, funny, disturbing, brutally honest, and ultimately uplifting story of Carr's decent into a self-inflicted hell and a bumpy return to life. Part investigative page-turner, part redemption song, part meditation on the mercurial nature of memory, The Night of the Gun pulls a besmirched genre out of the gutter, drags it through rehab, and returns it to a respectable place in society. And, if there is any justice, a place on the best-seller list." Arianna Huffington on Veryshortlist.com

Review:

"He never asks for sympathy, but his skill and the way he has told his story deserves respect. The Night of the Gun is an amazingly honest and fascinating memoir." Myrna Blyth, National Review

Review:

"Carr is meticulous in the investigation of his past.... He evinces genuine remorse for his frequently reprehensible behavior and succeeds in creating something more than merely another entry in what he terms the 'growing pile of junkie memoirs.'" The New Yorker

Review:

"A brilliantly written, brutally honest memoir." Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

Review:

"Carr's unique way of researching a memoir will give new meaning to accuracy in an era of fiction passing as fact.... The Night of the Gun is a worthy memoir amid so many less worthy." Steve Weinberg, San Francisco Chronicle

Review:

"The Night of the Gun brilliantly blends commentary, reflection, reporting, philosophy and outrage. It's among the most incisive, amazing and poignant memoirs you'll encounter, even if, as Carr himself says, you can't be certain every single word is true." Ron Wynn, Bookpage

Review:

"An honorable addition to that branch of literature that tries to make sense out of a single, flawed life. His own. And, with luck, the lives of many strangers." Pete Hamill, New York Times

Review:

"Gritty and compelling." Richard Price

Review:

"Always fascinating, often disturbing, sometimes darkly comic, David Carr's The Night of the Gun reinvents the memoir genre by applying a dose of journalistic integrity. Carr's style is as elegant as his saga is gritty, and the story of his life is simply extraordinary. " Jeffrey Toobin

Review:

"Whoa: a breathtakingly candid, laugh-out-loud funny, heroically rigorous, consistently riveting, and deeply moving account of a nightmarish descent and amazing redemption. Bravo, David Carr." Kurt Andersen

Review:

"[A] remarkable narrative of redemption...He writes with grace and precision...With grit and a recovering user's candor, Mr. Carr has written an arresting tale..." Edward Kosner, The Wall Street Journal

Synopsis:

The instant New York Times bestseller now in trade paperback: a “compelling tale of drug abuse, despair, and, finally, hope” (Chicago Sun-Times).

• Critical and commercial phenomenon: The Night of the Gun hit bestseller lists thanks to a national tour and rave reviews from every major newspaper in the country. “Imagine James Freys A Million Little Pieces on a dose of truth serum, suffuse it with some cynical humor and a good handful of self-depreca- tion, and you get David Carrs remarkable and immensely readable memoir,” wrote the New York Post. People magazine gave it three stars, saying “The Night of the Gun is an odyssey youll find hard to forget.” 

•  Lacerating honesty, scrupulous reporting: Many memoirists of dysfunction, addiction, and recovery have told incredible stories— what distinguishes Carr is his credibility. Entertainment Weekly wrote, “Carr is an undeniably brilliant and dogged journalist, and hes written an unforgettable memoir: A.” 

 • Website: NightofTheGun.com, the ground- breaking, interactive, multimedia website with videos and documents from the books research, was launched with the hardcover and will continue to draw visitors.

Synopsis:

The instant andlt;Iandgt;New York Timesandlt;/Iandgt; bestseller now in trade paperback: a and#8220;compelling tale of drug abuse, despair, and, finally, hopeand#8221; (andlt;Iandgt;Chicago Sun-Timesandlt;/Iandgt;).andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;and#8226; Critical and commercial phenomenon: andlt;Iandgt;Theandlt;/Iandgt; andlt;Iandgt;Night of the Gun andlt;/Iandgt;hit bestseller lists thanks toandlt;Iandgt; andlt;/Iandgt;a national tour and rave reviews from every major newspaper in the country. and#8220;Imagine James Freyand#8217;s andlt;Iandgt;A Million Little Piecesandlt;/Iandgt; on a dose of truth serum, suffuse it with some cynical humor and a good handful of self-depreca- tion, and you get David Carrand#8217;s remarkable and immensely readable memoir,and#8221; wrote the andlt;Iandgt;New York Post. People andlt;/Iandgt;magazine gave it threeandlt;Iandgt; andlt;/Iandgt;stars, saying and#8220;andlt;Iandgt;The Night of the Gunandlt;/Iandgt; is an odyssey youand#8217;ll find hard to forget.and#8221;andnbsp;andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;and#8226;andnbsp; Lacerating honesty, scrupulous reporting:andnbsp;Many memoirists of dysfunction, addiction, and recovery have told incredible storiesand#8212; what distinguishes Carr is his credibility.andnbsp;andlt;Iandgt;Entertainment Weekly andlt;/Iandgt;wrote, and#8220;Carr is anandlt;Iandgt; andlt;/Iandgt;undeniably brilliant and dogged journalist, and heand#8217;s written an unforgettable memoir: A.and#8221;andnbsp;andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;andnbsp;and#8226; Website: NightofTheGun.com, the ground- breaking, interactive, multimedia website with videos and documents from the bookand#8217;s research, was launched with the hardcover and will continue to draw visitors.

About the Author

David Carr is a reporter and the Media Equation columnist for The New York Times and has been a contributor to New York magazine and The Atlantic Monthly. From 1993 to 1995 he was editor of the Twin Cities Reader in Minneapolis. He lives with his family in Montclair, New Jersey.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

M F Hadley, January 8, 2010 (view all comments by M F Hadley)
A fascinating memoir that focuses on the author's tortuous existence, due largely to his drug (crack) and alcohol abuse. The grit of this story comes from the journalistic angle that Carr takes as he tries to recreate a reasonable fascimile of his "crack years." It seems that a good reporter can dig up just about anything, even on himself. Highly recommended!
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 1 readers found this comment helpful)
M F Hadley, January 8, 2010 (view all comments by M F Hadley)
A fascinating memoir that focuses on the author's tortutous existence, due largely to his drug and alcohol abuse. The grit of this story comes from the journalistic angle that Carr takes as he tries to recreate a reasonable fascimile of his "crack years." It seems that a good reporter can dig up just about anything, even on himself. Highly recommended!
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
View all 2 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9781416541530
Subtitle:
A reporter investigates the darkest story of his life. His own.
Author:
Carr, David
Publisher:
Simon and Schuster
Subject:
General
Subject:
Personal Memoirs
Subject:
General Biography
Subject:
Biography - General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Paperback
Publication Date:
20090602
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
b/w photos and illos t/o
Pages:
400
Dimensions:
8.44 x 5.5 in 13.16 oz

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Related Subjects

Biography » General
Health and Self-Help » Recovery and Addiction » Drug and Alcohol Addiction
Health and Self-Help » Recovery and Addiction » General
Health and Self-Help » Recovery and Addiction » Personal Stories

The Night of the Gun: A Reporter Investigates the Darkest Story of His Life. His Own. Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$7.95 In Stock
Product details 400 pages Simon & Schuster - English 9781416541530 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

After years of sobriety, each of David Carr's daughters wrote a personal essay at college, and the stories they told about their lives didn't jibe with his memory. How much did he remember? How much did he ever know? Carr decided to report his past. The result: Carr is some kind of memoir superhero. "Drug Rehab Memoir Remakes the Genre," shouts the New York Observer.

"Review" by , "3 stars. It's an odyssey you'll find hard to forget."
"Review" by , "[A] remarkable narrative of redemption...He writes with grace and precision...With grit and a recovering user's candor, Mr. Carr has written an arresting tale..."
"Review" by , "The Night of the Gun is about as dark and murky as dark and murky get. And though it is one of the most eloquent accounts of the seduction and snare of addiction, what's gotten lost in the water-cooler discussion about Carr's misadventures — including drug peddling as well as his bout with cancer — is that this book, in its sharp, serrated prose, is a meditation on how memory works (but mostly how it doesn't), a man's obsessive effort to get at his life's true narrative using the skills he's honed as a reporter, the one piece of his life that didn't combust."
"Review" by , "After years of abuse, the memoir has found its white knight, galloping in to show how a personal story can be engrossing, shocking and true. Mr. Carr's book...practically issues a challenge to those current reigning kings — David Sedaris, Augusten Burroughs, Ishmael Beah — of the memoir genre: You get a video camera and tape recorder, and retrace the steps of your life. Will your story sound the same?...It adds up to a riveting, improbable story. More important, Mr. Carr has produced a work that stands to revive the excitement and thrill of reading about reporting. It's All the President's Men, but about a dude from Minnesota with a drug habit."
"Review" by , "The Night of the Gun, is the fierce, funny, disturbing, brutally honest, and ultimately uplifting story of Carr's decent into a self-inflicted hell and a bumpy return to life. Part investigative page-turner, part redemption song, part meditation on the mercurial nature of memory, The Night of the Gun pulls a besmirched genre out of the gutter, drags it through rehab, and returns it to a respectable place in society. And, if there is any justice, a place on the best-seller list."
"Review" by , "He never asks for sympathy, but his skill and the way he has told his story deserves respect. The Night of the Gun is an amazingly honest and fascinating memoir."
"Review" by , "Carr is meticulous in the investigation of his past.... He evinces genuine remorse for his frequently reprehensible behavior and succeeds in creating something more than merely another entry in what he terms the 'growing pile of junkie memoirs.'"
"Review" by , "A brilliantly written, brutally honest memoir."
"Review" by , "Carr's unique way of researching a memoir will give new meaning to accuracy in an era of fiction passing as fact.... The Night of the Gun is a worthy memoir amid so many less worthy."
"Review" by , "The Night of the Gun brilliantly blends commentary, reflection, reporting, philosophy and outrage. It's among the most incisive, amazing and poignant memoirs you'll encounter, even if, as Carr himself says, you can't be certain every single word is true."
"Review" by , "An honorable addition to that branch of literature that tries to make sense out of a single, flawed life. His own. And, with luck, the lives of many strangers."
"Review" by , "Gritty and compelling."
"Review" by , "Always fascinating, often disturbing, sometimes darkly comic, David Carr's The Night of the Gun reinvents the memoir genre by applying a dose of journalistic integrity. Carr's style is as elegant as his saga is gritty, and the story of his life is simply extraordinary. "
"Review" by , "Whoa: a breathtakingly candid, laugh-out-loud funny, heroically rigorous, consistently riveting, and deeply moving account of a nightmarish descent and amazing redemption. Bravo, David Carr."
"Review" by , "[A] remarkable narrative of redemption...He writes with grace and precision...With grit and a recovering user's candor, Mr. Carr has written an arresting tale..."
"Synopsis" by , The instant New York Times bestseller now in trade paperback: a “compelling tale of drug abuse, despair, and, finally, hope” (Chicago Sun-Times).

• Critical and commercial phenomenon: The Night of the Gun hit bestseller lists thanks to a national tour and rave reviews from every major newspaper in the country. “Imagine James Freys A Million Little Pieces on a dose of truth serum, suffuse it with some cynical humor and a good handful of self-depreca- tion, and you get David Carrs remarkable and immensely readable memoir,” wrote the New York Post. People magazine gave it three stars, saying “The Night of the Gun is an odyssey youll find hard to forget.” 

•  Lacerating honesty, scrupulous reporting: Many memoirists of dysfunction, addiction, and recovery have told incredible stories— what distinguishes Carr is his credibility. Entertainment Weekly wrote, “Carr is an undeniably brilliant and dogged journalist, and hes written an unforgettable memoir: A.” 

 • Website: NightofTheGun.com, the ground- breaking, interactive, multimedia website with videos and documents from the books research, was launched with the hardcover and will continue to draw visitors.

"Synopsis" by , The instant andlt;Iandgt;New York Timesandlt;/Iandgt; bestseller now in trade paperback: a and#8220;compelling tale of drug abuse, despair, and, finally, hopeand#8221; (andlt;Iandgt;Chicago Sun-Timesandlt;/Iandgt;).andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;and#8226; Critical and commercial phenomenon: andlt;Iandgt;Theandlt;/Iandgt; andlt;Iandgt;Night of the Gun andlt;/Iandgt;hit bestseller lists thanks toandlt;Iandgt; andlt;/Iandgt;a national tour and rave reviews from every major newspaper in the country. and#8220;Imagine James Freyand#8217;s andlt;Iandgt;A Million Little Piecesandlt;/Iandgt; on a dose of truth serum, suffuse it with some cynical humor and a good handful of self-depreca- tion, and you get David Carrand#8217;s remarkable and immensely readable memoir,and#8221; wrote the andlt;Iandgt;New York Post. People andlt;/Iandgt;magazine gave it threeandlt;Iandgt; andlt;/Iandgt;stars, saying and#8220;andlt;Iandgt;The Night of the Gunandlt;/Iandgt; is an odyssey youand#8217;ll find hard to forget.and#8221;andnbsp;andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;and#8226;andnbsp; Lacerating honesty, scrupulous reporting:andnbsp;Many memoirists of dysfunction, addiction, and recovery have told incredible storiesand#8212; what distinguishes Carr is his credibility.andnbsp;andlt;Iandgt;Entertainment Weekly andlt;/Iandgt;wrote, and#8220;Carr is anandlt;Iandgt; andlt;/Iandgt;undeniably brilliant and dogged journalist, and heand#8217;s written an unforgettable memoir: A.and#8221;andnbsp;andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;andnbsp;and#8226; Website: NightofTheGun.com, the ground- breaking, interactive, multimedia website with videos and documents from the bookand#8217;s research, was launched with the hardcover and will continue to draw visitors.
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