Dry - Augusten Burroughs

Ladymol's Review

This book is superb, and if you are the least interested in addictions, and you have a warped sense of humour then I think youíll love it. Burroughsís first book, Running With Scissors, detailed his bizarre childhood: given away to a paedophile at aged thirteen by a mad, bad mother, buggered and generally abused until he was an adult and earning his keep giving blowjobs to strangers.† Despite all this, or perhaps because of it, Burroughs has huge self-belief and manages to con himself into an advertising job at aged just 19 with no formal education (the paedophile didnít make him go to school). Itís at that stage that this book begins. Augusten is flying high in his career and in his life, but gradually we learn the truth about the flying: itís fuelled almost entirely on alcohol. Denying he has a problem, he nevertheless agrees to check into a gay rehab clinic for 30 days. It goes well, he dries out, meets the most incredible (weíre talking David Christopher gorgeous Ė and, no, thatís not just an excuse to put a David picture on the page: I donít need an excuse for that) man and seems to life back in his control. Augustenís problems however, go deeper than he realises. Heís only just begun the long road to being dry.

Youíd think that a book about someone drying out would be worthy or boring or self-indulgent. Youíd be wrong about this one. Itís one the best-written and funniest books Iíve read for a long time. Itís starkly honest and searing in its descriptions of the depths he sinks to whilst under the influence.

The gay elements are beautifully realised without being at all graphic. All in all, this is a wonderful read and Iím off to get Running With Scissors as I want to spend as much time as possible with this wonderful author.