Book Review: Crazy Enough, by Storm Large

Originally published January 17, 2012 in Shelf Awareness for Readers. Reprinted here with permission. Get a bi-weekly dose of Shelf Awareness news & reviews in your inbox by registering here.

Portland, Ore., musician Storm Large has spent decades carefully cultivating her image as "a killer, a badass, a dangerous woman." But, as we learn in her gripping memoir, Crazy Enough, this is merely a facade, behind which lurks an emotional, somewhat insecure woman borne of an unstable childhood and an uncertain relationship with sanity.

Large's complex identity is inextricably tied up in her relationship with her mother, a woman she recalls mostly in the context of one mental hospital after another. Amid a litany of tests, medications and diagnoses, one doctor casually mentioned to Large that because her mother's condition was hereditary, she would one day grow up to be just like her mother. This offhand comment formed the basis of Large's life, leading to the downward spiral we experience firsthand in Crazy Enough. If I'm going to go crazy eventually, she seems to ask, why not just go for it now? From losing her virginity at the tender age of 13 to her estrangement from her mother, from her fleeting heroin addiction to her blossoming career as a New York City actress, Large spares readers no detail in recounting her precarious hold on sanity. 

The result is a memoir that reads like an in-your-face mashup of Augusten Burroughs and Chelsea Handler, combining raw humor and an understandable bitterness with more than than a few oversexed anecdotes. Though not for the faint of heart, Crazy Enough proves to be a readable account of one woman's descent into madness--and back out again--in the context of friendship, family and the terrible trio of sex, drugs and rock and roll.


Thoughts from other bookworms:
Williamette Week
Publisher's Weekly


You might also like:
Running with Scissors, by Augusten Burroughs
My Horizontal Life, by Chelsea Handler


Crazy Enough | Storm Large | Free Press | 9781439192405 | $25 Hardcover | 288 pages | January 2012 | Buy from an independent bookstore near you

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