A Family Institution [NOOK Book]

Overview

Based on an event from the author's life, this is a story about an unusual mid-life crisis triggered by the discovery of an aunt who was mistreated for mental illness in the 1940’s and 1950’s. Coming to terms with his own family history leads to a journey of self-discovery that tests not only current relationships, but new ones as well. This novel about secrets and revenge is told with a comic touch and will have you reading until the wee hours of the morning.
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A Family Institution

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Overview

Based on an event from the author's life, this is a story about an unusual mid-life crisis triggered by the discovery of an aunt who was mistreated for mental illness in the 1940’s and 1950’s. Coming to terms with his own family history leads to a journey of self-discovery that tests not only current relationships, but new ones as well. This novel about secrets and revenge is told with a comic touch and will have you reading until the wee hours of the morning.
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Editorial Reviews

IndieReader Review - Indie Reader
"Both the dialogue and physical descriptions of characters ring with truth and Ira's weakness-while sometimes difficult to fathom-does make the character seem more real."
The Midwest Book Review - Jack Mason
The Midwest Book Review calls Howard Reiss "an especially gifted storyteller with a knack for creating fully developed characters and original storylines that engage the readers complete attention from first page to last."
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Product Details

  • BN ID: 2940013813373
  • Publisher: Reiss Krance Publishing
  • Publication date: 12/7/2011
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • File size: 317 KB

Meet the Author

Howard Reiss is a graduate of Dartmouth College and Columbia Law School. He won writing prizes at both institutions, but confined his creative energies for the first 25 years after graduation to designing greeting cards and writing songs for his wife and daughters on the guitar. He also wrote a law book, which sat proudly on his parents' coffee table. Howard helped found a soup kitchen in Nyack, New York where he lives and runs, supports book publishers by buying more books than he can possibly find the time to read, and is somewhere north of 50.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 2 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(2)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

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2 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 5, 2012

    A Must Read!!

    I just finished reading this book and loved it. Once I got into the book, I could not put it down. The characters come alive and I felt like I knew them all--a friend, a family member, a work colleague. The author does a great job in making you care about the characters and keeps you coming back wanting to know how their lives turn out. A funeral of a beloved grandmother sets off a series of events that will change Ira's life. Just as in real life, one random moment can alter life's course. Ira's discovery of a long held family secret does just that, at least for a while.

    When he is unsuccessful in pushing his secretive family for answers to the mystery he has uncovered, Ira sets off on his own journey of discovery which takes him away from his comfortable middle class life with his wife and two kids in the burbs, to a mental hospital and a dingy transient apartment shared with a bleached blond lonely but kind nurse. His quest for some answers leads him to even more questions and unravels what he thought he knew about himself and his family but then ultimately leads him to some self-evident truths that were in fact always constant and true.

    In addition to loving the story, the author does a great job outlining the little known (at least to me) details about the treatment of the mentally ill throughout the late 19th and early 20th century. This historical family novel is most definitely a page-turner and will not disappoint.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2012

    Wonderful novel - fascinating story! The characters come alive a

    Wonderful novel - fascinating story! The characters come alive and I felt like I knew them all--a friend, a family member, a work colleague. The author does a great job in making you care about the characters and keeps you coming back wanting to know how their lives turn out. A funeral of a beloved grandmother sets off a series of events that will change Ira's life. Just as in real life, one random moment can alter life's course. Ira's discovery of a long held family secret does just that, at least for a while.
    When he is unsuccessful in pushing his secretive family for answers to the mystery he has uncovered, Ira sets off on his own journey of discovery which takes him away from his comfortable middle class life with his wife and two kids in the burbs, to a mental hospital and a dingy transient apartment shared with a bleached blond lonely but kind nurse. His quest for some answers leads him to even more questions and unravels what he thought he knew about himself and his family but then ultimately leads him to some self-evident truths that were in fact always constant and true.
    In addition to loving the story, the author does a great job outlining the little known details about the treatment of the mentally ill throughout the late 19th and early 20th century. This historical family novel is most definitely a page-turner and will not disappoint.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 11, 2011

    A must read!

    I just finished reading this book and loved it. Once I got into the book, I could not put it down. The characters come alive and I felt like I knew them all--a friend, a family member, a work colleague. The author does a great job in making you care about the characters and keeps you coming back wanting to know how their lives turn out. A funeral of a beloved grandmother sets off a series of events that will change Ira's life. Just as in real life, one random moment can alter life's course. Ira's discovery of a long held family secret does just that, at least for a while.

    When he is unsuccessful in pushing his secretive family for answers to the mystery he has uncovered, Ira sets off on his own journey of discovery which takes him away from his comfortable middle class life with his wife and two kids in the burbs, to a mental hospital and a dingy transient apartment shared with a bleached blond lonely but kind nurse. His quest for some answers leads him to even more questions and unravels what he thought he knew about himself and his family but then ultimately leads him to some self-evident truths that were in fact always constant and true.

    In addition to loving the story, the author does a great job outlining the little known (at least to me) details about the treatment of the mentally ill throughout the late 19th and early 20th century. This historical family novel is most definitely a page-turner and will not disappoint.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews

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