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Another Bullshit Night in Suck City: A Memoir Paperback – September 17, 2005
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Top Customer Reviews
Which brings me to the one lamentable thing about the book: an unfortunate title, which may drive potential readers away from a great read. Though the title prepares you for something like Charles Bukowski, this book is another type of bird, entirely. It is a remarkably decent book written by a conscientious human being who also happens to be a conscientious writer who cares greatly about his craft.
Nick Flynn laces together the frayed ends of his mother's and estranged father's failings, along with desultory tales of his own early carelessness. Life in Boston in the 80's is about keeping afloat. As Nick retreats to living aboard an old pleasure boat, he watches his father steadily sinking in a tide of alcohol abuse. Nick assiduously avoids his father until circumstances bring them together at the Pine Street Inn, a homeless shelter where Nick is employed, and Nick's father becomes a resident.
The irretrievably damaged father, Jonathan Flynn, wanders these pages like Banquo's ghost. Even in his youth a flim-flam man, Jonathan Flynn is not likeable. He is semi-coherent, devious, and deluded, but he is Nick's father and Nick cannot run from him anymore than he could run away from himself. This, then, is the story of Nick's coming to grips with his father, and finding his own purpose.
Nick Flynn's achievement is that he writes what should be a very depressing story in an undepressing way. There is not an ounce of self-pity in these pages, and the words all ring true. The twilight world of the homeless is evoked, with great compassion.
Would that all the clueless 'go-getters' of the world had this book. It would enrich their lives.
You will be haunted by this story long after you've finished reading it.
Nick worked in a homeless shelter for years where he ran across his father who was either living on the streets or in the shelter. His father eventually gets a little apartment and Nick visits him occasionally to check up on him. The conversations with his father are hilarious -- although that might not have been the intention.
The book is well written. It does not attempt to make excuses for the father's alcoholism or homelessness. It also doesn't attempt to make excuses for the fact that Nick did not pro-actively get his father off the streets. It simply relays the facts in a straight-foward manner of an off-beat and bizarre life.
Bottom line: Excellent book and quick read. The book reads like poetry; it is beautifully written.
what is ironic, and somehow true-seeming, is that people who come from the most disengaged families turn out to be the ones who become the most enmeshed with their parents and who come most dangerously close to repeating their parents' mistakes. Flynn has insight to his family dynamics, but this doesn't seem to help him avoid the poinlessness of numbing himself out on drugs and alcohol or from forming anything but superficial, need-based relationships with women.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A better book than it was a movie, Nick Flynn's memoir about his itinerant father is a moving and lyrical lesson about resilience.Published 1 month ago by D.Fromm
One of the best and most intense books I've read. A really must read both for personal use or to analyze if you want to become a better writer or story teller.Published 1 month ago by Annie Brickman
This is really more of a 3.5 stars for such an intense book.
The format doesn't read like a linear narrative but instead alternates between paragraphs and interludes of... Read more
Very much enjoyed this powerful and authentic piece of work. The author takes you on a very personal journey into depths that many of us pass by, but few of us stop to contemplate.Published 4 months ago by K. R. Marshall
Much better than the movie with Robert de Niro.
The author lived this story and you can tell.
And he is a marvelously gifted writer.
I highly recommend this book.
There is no clear timeline in this memoir. The entire tone of it is incredibly depressing and continuously touches on the same issues without providing much deeper meaning.Published 4 months ago by jrk4250
Wonderfully written and a clever narrative. It is, however, extremely depressing to read and I don't know that I'd recommend this to just anyone. Read morePublished 5 months ago by R. Watts
I read this book because of a recommendation from one of my college professors, but it really was just okay to me. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Amazon Customer