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Another Bullshit Night in Suck City: A Memoir Paperback – 20 Sep 2005


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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; New Ed edition (20 Sept. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393329402
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393329407
  • Product Dimensions: 1.4 x 0.3 x 2.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,997,923 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"Flynn has written a potent, distinctive autobiography... Flynn's talents are considerable-he has a compelling voice and wry sense of humor, especially about himself." -- Vendela Vida "The prose swirls in graceful arcs that frequently rise to the level of poetry, leavened by mordant humor... It's a powerful tale, stylishly told." -- Michael Mewshaw "In a perverse act of divine intervention, a life worth writing about was bestowed on a man actually able to write-in startling, beautiful, unsentimental prose... It is crammed with beauty and wisdom, and everyone will love it." -- Devin Friedman "A remarkable feat: a clear-eyed, inventive, and astonishingly honest guided tour of hell." -- Elissa Schappel "Flynn's authentic voice... holds us rapt, keeping both the tragic and the redemptive possibilities open." -- Darren Reidy "Told with energy, critical reflection and sensitivity, ?Another Bullshit Night in Suck City? is less a memoir than a study of one of America's darker conundrums: homelessness." -- Thomas Curwen "[Flynn's] story is eerie testimony to the potent influence of an absent parent. But Nick, a poet, is too subtle a writer to say so outright, and instead lets us draw our own conclusions with a delicate, poetic logic." -- Kate Bolick "Unlike the pity parties that too many memoirs have become, ?Night ?has no maudlin gestures, no 'inspirational' tones, no hysterics; it stares down emptiness with clear, dry eyes." -- Troy Patterson

Book Description

Another Bullshit Night in Suck City by Nick Flynn is a dark but humorous memoir, recounting with a raw authenticity and playful prose the eerie trajectory that carried Flynn into the homeless shelter in which he met his father - for the first time. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

45 of 50 people found the following review helpful By Robin L. Allen on 18 April 2005
Format: Paperback
This is a great "guy" book -- I don't know how women would like it. But it's basically a memoir and a recounting of a father/son relationship. Of course, it's also the story of the author's somewhat difficult coming-of-age.
What makes it so enjoyable is the writing, which is truly excellent. I hate to use the word "poetic" because it might turn some people off - and I don't mean to imply "arty" or "vague" - but there is definitely something lyrical about how the author recalls incidents of his boyhood.
Let me put it this way: the writing is intense. It's concrete, tight, simple -- the prose of an author who is also a poet. But please understand it isn't flowery or flighty. It's very focused work. Substantial.
Also, I appreciate the short chapters, and frequent paragraph breaks which make it very easy to take. Some people have called this memoir depressing. It's not. Besides being a father/son relationship, it's also the story a "failed" writer: the author's father wanted to be a great American author but ended up as a self-deceiving drunk. This is life. For me, the book is realistic without being too grim.
More importantly, it's a book about survival -- the son's survival to adulthood. As a memoir, I found this book to be much better than A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius because it's lot more focused and "compressed" and not so full of self-conscious "irony." Anyway, pick up a copy this great book. Another book I need to recommend is called The Losers' Club: Complete Restored Edition by Richard Perez, a much lighter book -- but a very substantial, enjoyable and fun read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By R. A. Davison TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 4 Mar. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Another Bull**** Night In Suck City attracted my attention when I saw the trailer for the film based upon it Being Flynn starring Paul Dano and Robert De Niro.

The novel is a memoir of father and son, the impact growing up without a father had upon Nick Flynn as a boy and the complex psychological reaction and range of emotions Nick is put through when his absent father suddenly becomes a present client at the homeless shelter at which he works.

This book has a completely unique story to tell, I have not read a story like the situation Nick Flynn is faced with before. His father Jonathan, as described by him reminded me immensely of Joe Gould from the Joseph Mitchell portrait of the homeless character on New York's streets.

Jonathan similarly is full of grandiose beliefs and claims, including being related to the inventors of various things, and being descended from the Romanov dynasty. A failed writer he is racist, conceited, bombastic and rude, you pity Nick Flynn completely for having to deal with this man, for having to have his colleagues, friends and girlfriend know his father for what he is.

But, Another Bull**** Night In Suck City rises entirely above the plethora of "my awful childhood" books that dominate supermarket shelves because it is wonderfully written and literary in style. I empathised with Nick strongly throughout, like when he tends to homeless men in the street, gives them food and blankets and does not know if the man in the next doorway will be his own Dad. Or when from inside his house he spies his father alone, walking, and is guilt-ridden for not inviting him in but knows for the sake of sheer self preservation he cannot.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mr. RJ WILMSHURST on 7 Nov. 2008
Format: Paperback
This book is a brilliant analysis of a failed father/son relationship, and the unconventional success of the son based on his own drive and determination. An interesting read for any father or son, and particularly for one in a difficult father/son relationship. Highly recommended.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I really did enjoy this memoir, Flynn's writing is, for the most part, well paced and evocative. However, it is not a novel and is almost totally lacking in structure or drive as throughout the bulk of the book Flynn is not actively interested in his father (or his own life) and is merely drifting from one place to the next. It is a testimony to the quality of Flynn's prose that he managed to make this a compelling read.

However, there is a general numbness to the tone of the book and its pace dips quite severely at around section 5 as it takes on a slightly inventorial nature. Here we get a lot of stuff that feels like padding, fictional scenes with Flynn's dad as Santa and a few conversations presented in play format that didn't work for me at all. I think Flynn has put them there to inject some life into the drabness that eclipses this section of the memoir; yet they served to slow it down even further.

Nonetheless, this is a case in which perseverance paid off as the final section of the book regains the energy that is integral to the rest of the book and we are left with a clear picture of just how muddy and complicated the relationship between father and son can be. Sometimes beautiful, often ugly and unpleasant but a brilliant read.
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Format: Paperback
quick delivery, but the book was less than engaging, worst read for a long time....avoid
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