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Men-ipulation, A Memoir of Addiction and Recovery Kindle Edition

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Editorial Reviews


"Despite my best intentions, I had to stay up late on a work night to finish <Men-ipulation>... The book is more a reality TV show than a memoir. ... The second book can't come too soon."---Holly Thompson, author

About the Author

Monica Lavery Sarli was born and raised in Kansas City, Missouri. Marrying her high school sweetheart Steve Sarli in 1976, she gave up her job to concentrate on their addictions until August 4, 1986 when she decided for both of them it was time to clean up. After three stabs at rehab—twice at the Menninger Clinic in Topeka, Kansas and a year at Amity, a therapeutic community in Tucson—they finally achieved sobriety through a Methadone program. That left Monica free to put all her efforts into promoting her charities until her divorce from Steve in 1995, when she reentered the job market, becoming a highly successful real estate agent selling high end homes. Later, she planned, built and managed a successful tanning salon before selling it in 2008. Monica now lives in Scottsdale, Arizona, where she continues to work with Denise on her memoir series and maintains that she will be forever 25.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1167 KB
  • Print Length: 233 pages
  • Publisher: No Regrets the Book, LLC (August 12, 2011)
  • Publication Date: August 12, 2011
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005H7UDZI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #194,152 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By CFlynn on September 1, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Normally, I don't read memoirs or autobiographies because too frequently I find them inauthentic and self-serving. Not this book. When an early morning heroin overdose nearly kills her husband Steve, Monica Sarli decides they can't keep living that way - not if they were to survive. Revealed unflinchingly to author Denise Doming, Men-ipulation tells her story with raw and sometimes honesty.

With steely determination - not only would she save herself, she would save Steve - Monica leads them into a harsh rehab clinic, then through a year-long methadone program. When they emerge Monica was truly free. Never again would she even take a drink of alcohol.

Steve not so much. Again Monica fights, this time to save the man she loves from certain death. In doing so, she confronts and overcomes the layers of personal denial and self-deception that plague us all, but addicts more than most. Her dogged persistence stays with her even as her story rushes to its inevitable end. She credits her determination to the three principles of Amity, the rehab program that put her on the road to recovery - never lie, always run your story (meaning be open about your past), and help others.

I recommend this book to anyone who has ever suffered from addiction or had their lives and families torn apart by someone else who did. Even those who haven't will find their heart touched by this compelling story. It will engage you from start to finish.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Eve Paludan on August 14, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
In Men-ipulation, an unforgettable and moving true-life tale of sorrow and joy, "pulp nonfiction" meets a gritty love story of failure and success in this candid, courageous tale of addiction and recovery from a pasta heiress-by-marriage with a heroin habit and a heart of gold. From the drug neighborhoods of Kansas City to long stints in rehab to a dinner party on Senator Barry Goldwater's elegant patio to charity functions for underprivileged children in the Phoenix area, Monica Sarli has proved herself to be a survivor and a conqueror of adversity. She survived her drug addiction, her toxic friends, her husband's family's wealth, and her husband's penchant for getting them into hot water, so hot that they were offered a spot in the witness protection program in exchange for testimony against a dangerous drug kingpin whom they considered a friend. Readers will be appalled, aghast, and shaken by the drug world of a woman who loved without fear and never abandoned her husband, even though he dragged her down to the worst abysses of her entire life. Men-ipulation propels the reader on a reckless journey from inside a "shooting gallery" where her husband overdosed and nearly died that night (but for her bravery) to her recovery and her powerful presence in corporate boardrooms. Monica Sarli's life story is a loud warning cry against hard drugs, a rally to love one another unconditionally, and a resounding triumph of the human spirit. Brava to Denise Domning, an adept and insightful chronicler of Mrs. Sarli's life story, and brava to Monica Sarli, for telling it like it is, fearlessly. I was riveted, heartbroken, and amazed. This memoir packs a wallop. Without apology, Men-ipulation is the naked confession of a life gone wrong but a love gone right. Five stars. - Eve Paludan, author of three editions of The Romance Writer's Pink Pages, Letters from David, and Taking Back Tara.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Christine F on June 20, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I took Monica Sarli's memoir on my beach vacation and couldn't put it down! It is hilarious, sad, and always real. Her circumstances may be different than yours, but there are bits and pieces of her story that resonate within us all. By the end of the book, you feel like you've gained a new friend and insight into some of your own struggles. I highly recommend her book and can't wait for the release of book two!
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By John Walsh on November 2, 2011
Format: Paperback
On the rare occasions I am asked for life advice by my female students, my limited ability to respond coherently includes the imprecation `don't marry the first one.' It may just be the fact that bad news spreads more quickly than good news or that, as a book reviewer, I get asked to review various memoirs and self-help type books that so often come from women with several young children and a disappeared man offering no visible support. Well, Monica Sarli's story (why does she still use her married name after all that happened?) provides further evidence for my observation. This is despite the fact that her high school boyfriend provided her with a considerable level of material wealth - more important is that he caused her to plunge into two decades of heroin and crack cocaine addiction, together with the tedious misery and squalid details that accompany hard drug use.

The man concerned, Steve, clearly exercised a considerable emotional hold over the author, in addition to the financial considerations. To the outsider, he seems to be the kind of person best avoided at all costs: promiscuous, prone to violent mood swings, thoroughly unreliable, irresponsible and selfish. There seem to be some mitigating factors: Steve is described as severely dyslexic, which can have a devastating effect on young people in the educational system when not properly diagnosed while there is another mention of the use of shock treatment at the age of 15 after the loss of a girlfriend. There is also the family issue - well, his parents are not portrayed as the best in the world but they seem to have failed if anything at being too willing to cover up the mistakes their son has made and giving him too much money.
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