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More, Now, Again Paperback – 16 Jan 2003


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Product details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Virago; New Ed edition (16 Jan. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1860499899
  • ISBN-13: 978-1860499890
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 2.4 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 540,976 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Amazon Review

From its demanding title, one quickly gathers this is no skip through the bluebells. More, Now, Again is the latest instalment in the confessional canon of Elizabeth Wurtzel, the tortured, talented author of Prozac Nation, who, by her own confession, has always pathologically "needed more". After her addiction therapist prescribes her Ritalin, a form of "mild speed" to take her mind off other drugs, and to help her "focus", she finds the pills lack the nasal intimacy of cocaine, so after a while, she starts pulverising them to produce something snortable. Suddenly she's on her way to another dependency, 40 pills a day, and another couple of years of strung-out, narcissistic desperation on the long and whiney road, bouncing between monomaniac spells in Florida and New York. It's not exactly for the pull-yourself-together brigade.

All of this would be unbearable for all concerned, were it not for Wurtzel's resilient, often bleakly humorous writing. Unashamedly exhibitionist, there is little she refrains from laying bare, including the obsessive tweezering of her legs to produce a mottle of sores and abscesses, ruthlessly playing on friendships to facilitate her habit and jagging her psyche until the only relationship she cares about is with the powder. Of course, when she finally steels herself, or fragments enough, to try rehab, she unravels something of her sense of "terminal uniqueness", as the lingo goes. Though before she can come clean there are to be countless relapses, criminal arrest, a torturous fixation on an alcoholic, a renewal of her cocaine habit, professional crises as she writes and promotes her previous book Bitch, and an abortion. The cumulative effect is less a cry for help as a suffocating Banshee-like squall. To come out of this blue period, to shift from Generation X to Generation Why, is achieved through will power and NA group therapy, 12 steps not to heaven but at least sobriety, and a determination to take personal responsibility for ending a familial legacy of abuse. At times you want to shake her, other times hug her, yet she remains one of the most savvy and provocative writers of contemporary non-fiction; how she handles happiness, though, may prove her biggest challenge.--David Vincent --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

The structure of this book, the narrative pace, the comic timing, the dramatic pacing and the neurotic self-awareness of the personal voice are virtually impeccable. (THE TIMES)

Her writing is so smart and sussed and heart-grabbing. (SCOTSMAN)

She is brilliant at describing the pain of loneliness... (DAILY EXPRESS)

There is always the danger that reading about someone else's drug habit will be as boring an experience as being the only sober guest at a party, but Wurtzel is disarmingly honest about her increasingly bad behaviour. This self-awareness, coupled with he (DAILY MAIL)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By ME on 10 Mar. 2003
Format: Paperback
Prozac Nation was deliciously depressing and I was happy to leave it at that, but when a friend pestered me to read More, Now & again, telling me that the story only really concludes there, I gave it a go.
The first thing that struck me was how foolish I had been to think she would stroll off into the sunset after Prozac Nation, with all her problems solved. She quickly descends into more chaos & more addiction and frighteningly doesn't see any of this as a problem.
Critics of Wurtzel say this & 'Prozac' are nothing more than collections of self indulgent whining but I beg to differ. Yes, she is extremely self obsessed and self important - yet she cheerfully admits it. It's true that nothing really happens in this book, she moves from addiction to addiction and constantly avoids friends, work and going into rehab. But explosive special effects and twisting plots can be kept for Arnold Schwazzanigger. It's about the quality of her writing and it manages to be both sumptuous and as openly raw as the wounds she carves on her legs.
Half way through the book you feel like banging your head against a brick wall. She just never seems to learn, she is such a coward, screwing herself up, hating it, yet doing nothing to change it. But the fact that she can put it down for everyone to see proves she's acknowledged her own stupidity.
As you've guessed, the book concludes with her clean and looking forward to life for the first time without the grip of addiction influencing her. I can't honestly say that I believe she'll stay straight forever. She was tempted off the wagon hundreds of times throughout her other two books and when you think she's hit rock bottom, she keeps on drilling away through the seabed.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A. CARTER on 8 July 2003
Format: Paperback
What did readers expect when buying this book, for it to end as happily ever after. That isn't it at all. Life doesn't always have a happy ending. Elizabeth Wurtzel no longer is seen as a teen in this book, but a grown woman with adult problems. Her overwhelming addictions of snorting pills is horrible but you learn more about her personality. Her failed relationships, addictions and depression come through terribly clear....but she does learn..only the hard way. (Like the rest of us.) What I loved most about the book is her ranting about anything from Timithy McVeigh to her cat. Some have found the rants to be terrible but it is an inside glimpse to her thoughts. If you want fiction and a fairytale, go buy Harry Potter. As for me, I am just happy with hearing the truth and learning from it. It doesn't mean I have to understand it from my experiences.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 28 Feb. 2002
Format: Paperback
I knew nothing about Elizabeth Wurtzel, the terminally confessional Gen-X postergirl for suicide chic, until I read an excerpt from this book in The Guardian. And I was so impressed, I bought the book.
This account of an escalating addiction to Ritalin, then coke, then porn, and ultimately and fundamentally love, is totally gripping, because it's so well written. A celebrated New York writer with a to-die-for apartment and hip friends, whose favourite pastime is shopping, and who admits that however early she goes to bed, it is hard for her to be up and out of the door before about 4-ish, Wurtzel is in the difficult position of trying to make us sympathise with her descent into coke hell. As she says, she had it all, and she 'threw it all away'. The odd thing is, it is such a no-holds-barred account, her honesty becomes compelling. The passages where she describes the speed-addled hours she spent tweezing hairs out of her legs until, at points, she got down to the bone (and the green infected pustules that ensue) forced me to put the book down for a couple of minutes to recover. But not for long though, because I was genuinely interested to see how she resolved this wretched situation. She is totally open about everything -- which at points can be infuriating, for example when she repeatedly describes how attractive she still looks despite being a cokehead -- but this warts-and-all account comes from the heart, and at points moved me to tears. And part of her problem is she is a born attention-seeker, so the writing does backflips to impress you -- she's not thick, and her prose is funny, punchy, has a huge range of reference (including her rather cool record collection), and practically screams 'like me, like me!' at every turn.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Candyflower on 3 Nov. 2002
Format: Paperback
I love this book. I have read it 3 times already, and will read it again. I wondered what happened to Elizabeth Wurtzel after Prozac Nation, and how she continued her inner struggle with herself.
Well, this is it! Writing in the same style as Prozac Nation, but matured in her descriptions and anaylsis of her own personality, More, Now, Again explores the world of addiction from one person's point of view, and her continued struggle for self exceptence.
The book makes you feel as if you are Elizabeth's closest friend as she tells you personal details of her life, but you also feel removed from her too, as though you are too far away to help like a real friend would.
This book is an excellent piece of prose and I reccomend it to anyone. Even my best friend, who hates reading, has become inseparable from it!
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