God: A Memory
Angelhead: My Brother's Descent into Madness / Edition 1by Greg Bottoms
Pub. Date: 04/15/2005
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
A taut, powerful memoir of madness, Angelhead documents the violent, drug-addled descent of the author's brother, Michael, into schizophrenia. Beginning with Michael's first psychotic break—seeing God in his suburban bedroom window while high on LSD—Greg Bottoms recounts, in gripping, dramatic prose, the bizarre disappearances, suicide attempts,/i>
A taut, powerful memoir of madness, Angelhead documents the violent, drug-addled descent of the author's brother, Michael, into schizophrenia. Beginning with Michael's first psychotic break—seeing God in his suburban bedroom window while high on LSD—Greg Bottoms recounts, in gripping, dramatic prose, the bizarre disappearances, suicide attempts, and the shocking crime that land Michael in the psychiatric wing of a maximum security prison. A work of nonfiction with the form and imagery of a novel, Angelhead enables the reader to witness not only the fragmenting of a mind, but of a family as well.
"A tour-de-force memoir. . . . Bottoms writes like a poet, he writes like he is on fire."—Esquire, Book of the Year, 2000
"Angelhead is a brilliant, albeit inconceivably sad book. The fact that Bottoms survived the ordeal is incredible. But the fact that he could write about it with such pathos and insight is nothing less than extraordinary."—Atlanta Journal-Constitution
"Greg Bottoms has provided a biographical novel about his brother that may be as close as most of us will ever get to knowing what it is to be truly mad. Angelhead is a story nearly as terrifying as the disease it describes."—Psychology Today
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God: A Memory
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A glimpse into what life is like for those who's mind's betray them and a brother's struggle to understand the impact on his family and himself. Well written.
I would have given this 5 stars except for the too abstract form in which Bottoms guides the readers through the book. I first attempted to read it, got onto page 3 and said, this guy is too much. I couldn't focus on his narrative. In shear boredom, I picked it back up, and then couldn't put it down. The picture it paints is painful, but since many families live with this illness every day, I quickly felt empathic. This is a painful journey to take as a reader, especially if one feels any sense of love for the common man.