The Contortionist's Handbook

The Contortionist's Handbook

by Craig Clevenger
4.5 36

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Overview

The Contortionist's Handbook by Craig Clevenger

The Contortionist¹s Handbook is the story of John Dolan Vincent, and
abnormally gifted child with a proclivity for mathematics beyond his years.
However, he also bears a rare deformity‹polydactylism‹and his genius is
counterbalanced by a near absence of social skills and episodes of severe
migraines.

As an adult his migraines occur with alarming regularity. And his repeated
attempts at self-medication send him over and over to the emergency room. He
knows that to visit twice is to be institutionalized as a suicide risk. So,
following each trip to the hospital, he draws upon his skills as a petty
forger, and reinvents a new identity for himself.

The Contortionist¹s Handbook is about the lengths people will go to in order
to protect themselves from others and ultimately from themselves.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781931561488
Publisher: MacAdam/Cage Publishing, Incorporated
Publication date: 08/24/2003
Pages: 220
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.50(d)

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The Contortionist's Handbook 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 36 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
That is just how I would categorize this book. The character elements are astonishing. Clevenger can really get inside your brain and make you think that he is writing about you personally. No I am not a contortionist. But we all are in a way just looking for happiness and trying to squeeze into our niche. No I am not a practicing forger. I don't even have good handwriting. What I enjoy most about this book is that even though I am nothing like the main character and I do not agree with what the character does, I can't help but empathize and feel close to the character, like he is a brother or a best-friend. That is good writing, and that is what I look for when I read a book. The whole book is just wonderfully thought-out. I recommend this to anybody that is looking for a great fiction novel that has a great deal of whit and humor. I have purchased this book 3 times; my own hard cover, my brother-in-law's Christmas gift, and a soft cover so that I can loan it to friends without the risk of losing my copy. I am waiting anxiously for Craig's second book. Kabol.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Crawling through the labyrinth of mediocre writing in search of something new can often lead to rather unpalatable places. I was in danger of becoming that which I despise: an unadventurous reader safely nestled between the covers with familiar and trusted authors. Craig's book has restored my faith in contemporary writing. I don't know how adequate the comparison is but I found something of Garcia Marquez within this book. Craft. Don't get me wrong, the style and content bear no resemblance. However, there is something of the extraordinary seeming entirely plausible, which appealed to me. The development of the characters is brilliant and the plot compelling enough to read the book in one sitting, provided you don't have to be up early for work the next day. Read this book, if for no other reason than to encourage publishing houses to be a little more daring. Bring on the next one!
KaneH More than 1 year ago
A strange, yet powerful book, with a protagonist suffering a host of problems. Most notably that he has to exist in a netherworld of identities to avoid crooks, prison, or the psychiatric hospitals. He's an identity forger, and the details we get on his work are fascinating, and sound authentic. The world we are shown is brutal and frightening. Recalls Chuck Palahniuk's work in a very good way, so if you like any of that, you'll enjoy this. Kept my interest and didn't know how it would end, so was quite good.
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Spanky-McChuckwagon More than 1 year ago
I really liked the tempo of this book. It went back and forth between flash backs and a psych evaluation after a drug overdose. I really liked the off beat descriptions and the realness of the feelings he tries to get across. I read this because Chuck had good things to say about it, and I wasn't disappointed.
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