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Possible Side Effects: True Stories by [Burroughs, Augusten]
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Possible Side Effects: True Stories Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Review

Augusten Burroughs is:
"One of the most compelling and screamingly funny voices of the new century."
--"USA Today"
"Deliciously perverse."
--"People"
"Endearingly neurotic...he hooks you into a story better than anybody."
--"Entertainment Weekly"
"Outrageously magical...surprisingly thoughtful."
--"The Atlanta Journal-Constitution"

"Unflinchingly, ÝAugusten Burroughs¨ gouges himself (literally and figuratively), bleeds, gets it on paper--often without a neat resolution or the genre's obligatory epiphany--and then makes you laugh. Now that's genius."--"The New York Times Book Review"
"Oh, that boy is trouble. Augusten Burroughs offers more tales of his dysfunctional family and his ill-fated forays into polite society in his outrageously funny new collection of essays, "Possible Side Effects." . . . Tart, smart, and wicked fun."--"O, The Oprah Magazine"
"Burroughs's twisted nature has an immediate appeal. . . . He's the mildly demented distant relative whose junk-food binges, spiteful fantasies, and kleptomaniac tendencies appeal to our suppressed dark side while allowing us to maintain a sense of superiority. And he deadpans like a champion."--"San Francisco Chronicle"
"ÝA¨ unique and humorous perspective on life's twists and turns . . . Burroughs comically documents his diverse experiences, from childhood and adulthood, using aspects of his character--his social isolation, slovenliness, and imagination, to name just a few--to plump the material."--"Daily News" (New York)
"His ruminations on everything from Nicorette gum, the BBC, pornography, and his messed-up childhood with a delusional manic-depressive mother read like a darker, hipper David Sedaris. . . . A funny, sharp, and totally enjoyable read."--"Jane"
"The primary reason for reading the essays in "Possible Side Effects" is to enjoy the sound of ÝBurroughs's¨ rueful, funny, faintly sulky voice. . . . This is a book by someone who understands the frailty and absurdity of the human condition."--"The Washington Post"

"Unflinchingly, [Augusten Burroughs] gouges himself (literally and figuratively), bleeds, gets it on paper--often without a neat resolution or the genre's obligatory epiphany--and then makes you laugh. Now that's genius."--"The New York Times Book Review"
"Oh, that boy is trouble. Augusten Burroughs offers more tales of his dysfunctional family and his ill-fated forays into polite society in his outrageously funny new collection of essays, "Possible Side Effects," . . . Tart, smart, and wicked fun."--"O, The Oprah Magazine"
"Burroughs's twisted nature has an immediate appeal. . . . He's the mildly demented distant relative whose junk-food binges, spiteful fantasies, and kleptomaniac tendencies appeal to our suppressed dark side while allowing us to maintain a sense of superiority. And he deadpans like a champion."--"San Francisco Chronicle"
"[A] unique and humorous perspective on life's twists and turns . . . Burroughs comically documents his diverse experiences, from childhood and adulthood, using aspects of his character--his social isolation, slovenliness, and imagination, to name just a few--to plump the material."--"Daily News" (New York)
"His ruminations on everything from Nicorette gum, the BBC, pornography, and his messed-up childhood with a delusional manic-depressive mother read like a darker, hipper David Sedaris. . . . A funny, sharp, and totally enjoyable read."--"Jane"
"The primary reason for reading the essays in "Possible Side Effects" is to enjoy the sound of [Burroughs's] rueful, funny, faintly sulky voice. . . . This is a book by someone who understands the frailty and absurdity of the humancondition."--"The Washington Post"

"Unflinchingly, Augusten Burroughs gouges himself (literally and figuratively), bleeds, gets it on paper--often without a neat resolution or the genre's obligatory epiphany--and then makes you laugh. Now that's genius."--"The New York Times Book Review"
"Burroughs makes good, snarky company even with nothing serious in mind."--"The New York Times"
" "
"Oh, that boy is trouble. Augusten Burroughs offers more tales of his dysfunctional family and his ill-fated forays into polite society in his outrageously funny new collection of essays, "Possible Side Effects." . . . Tart, smart, and wicked fun."--"O, The Oprah Magazine"
" "
"The primary reason for reading the essays in "Possible Side Effects" is to enjoy the sound of his rueful, funny, faintly sulky voice. . . . This is a book by someone who understands the frailty and absurdity of the human condition."--"The Washington Post Book World""" "These essays aren't for the faint-hearted . . . but you will laugh, a lot, and out loud, sometimes cringing. . . . You may see yourself here, with the sting such recognition entails."--"The Oregonian"
" "
"Augusten Burroughs's spare style and facility with double entendre are well suited to the biting comic essay form. He tackles everything from the tooth fairy to doll-collecting innkeepers to lesbian personal ads in this volume, and the result is fairly even and definitely hard to put down once you begin. Burroughs's greatest strengths as a memoirist are his refusal to fit into one easy box (gay man, alcoholic, ad man, New Yorker, hypochondriac, compulsive slob) and his ability to elevate reader curiosity using tone and plain observations. . . . He somehow manages to lure you in time after time with his unique way of describing things that could have happened to anyone, but didn't--at least not quite this way."--"The Globe and Mail "(Toronto)
"From the author of the bestsellers "Running with Scissors" and "Magical Thinking" comes another set of memoir-style essays capturing Burroughs's unique and humorous perspective on life's twists and turns. . . . Burroughs comically documents his diverse experiences, from childhood and adulthood, using aspects of his character--his social isolation, slovenliness, and imagination, to name just a few."--"Daily News" (New York)
"At this point, labeling Augusten Burroughs a memoirist is a bit of an understatement. . . . Burroughs has excavated every crevice of his personal life for material. So maybe calling him a miner is more accurate. Fortunately, his work is much more environmentally friendly. . . . Burroughs is funny--when he's not breaking your heart. . . . Burroughs's breezy, clear-cut writing style is perfectly matched to his subject matter: prose-y when necessary but highly conversational, fluid, and frank . . . Something wonderful and new to savor."--"The ""Toronto"" Star"
"'The Forecast for Sommer' is a gut-wrenching ode to a suicidal friend of his mother's, while 'The Georgia Thumper' tackles his hatred toward his cruel maternal grandmother. Those two stories alone are worth the book's price."--"Entertainment Weekly"
" "
"In essay after essay, Burroughs's troubles follow one another in hilarious succession. . . . He can be profoundly moving."--"The ""Atlanta"" Journal-Constitution"
"Augusten Burroughs returns with "Possible Side Effects," another lewd but sophisticated collection of intimately personal essays. Brave, dark, and screamingly funny, this book is so engaging it'll leave you craving more."--"Harper's Bazaar"
"His ruminations on everything from Nicorette gum, the BBC, pornography, and his messed-up childhood with a delusional manic-depressive mother read like a darker, hipper David Sedaris. . . . A funny, sharp, and totally enjoyable read."--"Jane "magazine
"Delightful . . . This book is yet another testament to his wild imagination and could keep the readers up at night as well as help the author gain a whole new legion of fans . . . Sure to enthrall . . . A memorable book; highly recommended."--"Library Journal"
"He's learned to make love, not Dewar's . . . Edgy at the edges but soft in the center, "Possible Side Effects" connects to neurotic midlifers, slightly off-kilter, kidless, dog-doting, and solitary souls."--"Baltimore"" Sun"
"Memorable and well worth reading . . . His unique perspective [is] fashioned from a lifetime of bad influences, inner torment, and a salad bowl of insecurities. And what is truly amazing: He can find the humor in it."--Associated Press
"Burroughs's twisted nature has an immediate appeal. . . . Some sketches mine the indignities of his stint in advertising; others turn to fresh material of ever-so-slightly-ruffled domestic bliss with his saintly boyfriend, Dennis. . . . Another entry, about a burn-scarred dermatologist who offers ten-year-old Burroughs the tenderness his narcissistic mother can't, is so genuine and heartbreaking that you slow yourself to savor it."--"San Francisco"" Chronicle"
"Burroughs's perceptive chronicle of his adult and childhood experiences is both poignant and self-deprecating--and best of all, it is laugh-out-loud funny."--"Philadelphia""""City"" Paper"

Unflinchingly, Augusten Burroughs gouges himself (literally and figuratively), bleeds, gets it on paper--often without a neat resolution or the genre's obligatory epiphany--and then makes you laugh. Now that's genius. "The New York Times Book Review"

Burroughs makes good, snarky company even with nothing serious in mind. "The New York Times"

Oh, that boy is trouble. Augusten Burroughs offers more tales of his dysfunctional family and his ill-fated forays into polite society in his outrageously funny new collection of essays, "Possible Side Effects." . . . Tart, smart, and wicked fun. "O, The Oprah Magazine"

The primary reason for reading the essays in "Possible Side Effects" is to enjoy the sound of his rueful, funny, faintly sulky voice. . . . This is a book by someone who understands the frailty and absurdity of the human condition. "The Washington Post Book World"

These essays aren't for the faint-hearted . . . but you will laugh, a lot, and out loud, sometimes cringing. . . . You may see yourself here, with the sting such recognition entails. "The Oregonian"

Augusten Burroughs's spare style and facility with double entendre are well suited to the biting comic essay form. He tackles everything from the tooth fairy to doll-collecting innkeepers to lesbian personal ads in this volume, and the result is fairly even and definitely hard to put down once you begin. Burroughs's greatest strengths as a memoirist are his refusal to fit into one easy box (gay man, alcoholic, ad man, New Yorker, hypochondriac, compulsive slob) and his ability to elevate reader curiosity using tone and plain observations. . . . He somehow manages to lure you in time after time with his unique way of describing things that could have happened to anyone, but didn't--at least not quite this way. "The Globe and Mail (Toronto)"

From the author of the bestsellers "Running with Scissors" and "Magical Thinking" comes another set of memoir-style essays capturing Burroughs's unique and humorous perspective on life's twists and turns. . . . Burroughs comically documents his diverse experiences, from childhood and adulthood, using aspects of his character--his social isolation, slovenliness, and imagination, to name just a few. "Daily News (New York)"

At this point, labeling Augusten Burroughs a memoirist is a bit of an understatement. . . . Burroughs has excavated every crevice of his personal life for material. So maybe calling him a miner is more accurate. Fortunately, his work is much more environmentally friendly. . . . Burroughs is funny--when he's not breaking your heart. . . . Burroughs's breezy, clear-cut writing style is perfectly matched to his subject matter: prose-y when necessary but highly conversational, fluid, and frank . . . Something wonderful and new to savor. "The Toronto Star"

'The Forecast for Sommer' is a gut-wrenching ode to a suicidal friend of his mother's, while 'The Georgia Thumper' tackles his hatred toward his cruel maternal grandmother. Those two stories alone are worth the book's price. "Entertainment Weekly"

In essay after essay, Burroughs's troubles follow one another in hilarious succession. . . . He can be profoundly moving. "The Atlanta Journal-Constitution"

Augusten Burroughs returns with "Possible Side Effects," another lewd but sophisticated collection of intimately personal essays. Brave, dark, and screamingly funny, this book is so engaging it'll leave you craving more. "Harper's Bazaar"

His ruminations on everything from Nicorette gum, the BBC, pornography, and his messed-up childhood with a delusional manic-depressive mother read like a darker, hipper David Sedaris. . . . A funny, sharp, and totally enjoyable read. "Jane magazine"

Delightful . . . This book is yet another testament to his wild imagination and could keep the readers up at night as well as help the author gain a whole new legion of fans . . . Sure to enthrall . . . A memorable book; highly recommended. "Library Journal"

He's learned to make love, not Dewar's . . . Edgy at the edges but soft in the center, "Possible Side Effects" connects to neurotic midlifers, slightly off-kilter, kidless, dog-doting, and solitary souls. "Baltimore Sun"

Memorable and well worth reading . . . His unique perspective [is] fashioned from a lifetime of bad influences, inner torment, and a salad bowl of insecurities. And what is truly amazing: He can find the humor in it. "Associated Press"

Burroughs's twisted nature has an immediate appeal. . . . Some sketches mine the indignities of his stint in advertising; others turn to fresh material of ever-so-slightly-ruffled domestic bliss with his saintly boyfriend, Dennis. . . . Another entry, about a burn-scarred dermatologist who offers ten-year-old Burroughs the tenderness his narcissistic mother can't, is so genuine and heartbreaking that you slow yourself to savor it. "San Francisco Chronicle"

Burroughs's perceptive chronicle of his adult and childhood experiences is both poignant and self-deprecating--and best of all, it is laugh-out-loud funny. "Philadelphia City Paper""

From the Inside Flap

From the million-copy bestselling author of "Running with Scissors" comes Augusten Burroughs's most provocative collection yet.
Augusten Burroughs is:
"One of the most compelling and screamingly funny voices of the new century."
---"USA Today"
"Deliciously perverse."
---"People"
"Endearingly neurotic...he hooks you into a story better than anybody."
---"Entertainment Weekly"
"Outrageously magical...surprisingly thoughtful."
---"The Atlanta Journal-Constitution"
This book is approved for consumption by those seeking pleasure, escape, amusement, enlightenment, or general distraction. This book is not approved to treat disorders such as eBay addiction or incessant blind dating.
In studies, some people reported inappropriate, convulsive laughter, a tingling sensation in the limbs, and sudden gasping. Fewer than 1 percent reported narcolepsy.
Doll collectors may experience special sensitivity, as may discourteous drivers, candy-company brand managers, and nicotine-gum users.
This book has been shown to be especially helpful to those with parents, grandparents, life partners, and incontinent dogs. People with dry, cracked skin have responded well to this book, as have people with certain heart conditions.
Do not operate heavy machinery while reading this book, until you know what effects it may have on you.
This text is contraindicated in those suffering from certain psychiatric disorders, including---but not limited to---readers afflicted with anhedonia, which is the inability to experience pleasure.
Ask your doctor about "Possible Side Effects."

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 886 KB
  • Print Length: 308 pages
  • Publisher: Atlantic Books; Main edition (1 Jun. 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0050C862W
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #66,067 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Mr. Burrows writes beautifully. His content is not going to be for everyone. I once shared the opening scenes of 'Withnail and I' with a bunch of people who found it sad and upsetting that grown men lived in such squalor. If you are with them, don't read this, or any of his other books. I read Running with Scissors every year or so, and it is still fresh and interesting. This set of essays is sometimes lighter in tone (I'm thinking the broken dog, and his sojourn in London) but not always. It is laugh out loud funny, though, if you like your humour on the dark side.

Don't worry about the moral, just enjoy the ride. I really like Cynthia Heimel's essays on life too ('If you can't live without me, why aren't you dead yet' etc) and there's the same kind of subtext - someone who knows themselves really well, and can be amusing and honest at the same time. I am a big fan.
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Format: Paperback
I'm never disappointed in his books. I always find myself chuckling out load and in awe with his wit. Like the above review, I did find myself questioning some of his accounts. But I checked into his website, and found what I was curious about is true.

If you're questioning whether to buy this book or not, give 'Running with Scissors' a try first. Trust me, you'll end up buying his other books soon after.
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Another "laugh out loud" work from the current master of cynic/egocentric humor. If you loved any of his other books (i.e. Running with Scissors, Magical Thinking, etc.), then you are sure to love this hilarious follow-up collection of short stories. As Augusten takes you from one corner to another in his insane past experiences (buying defective dogs, suffering torrential nosebleeds, taking holiday at an inn creepily decorated with one too many dolls), you will find yourself quickly and happily moving along. Though I find myself more and more often questioning the accuracy of his accounts, I am willing to admit I don't really care. Keep 'em coming, Burroughs.
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Third book I've read by this author and it's as good as ever - quite a feat. These glimpses into his childhood make you realise he could only ever be one thing and that's a writer. A very very good writer too. He's awful, funny, honest, perceptive and a great storyteller. I think I might be tempted to buy a fourth which is unheard of as I've usually become bored by now.
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Format: Paperback
I just loved this book and finished it quickly. I went to the store to buy Clarence Thomas' new memoir and saw this had come out. If this was in hardcover, I missed it, but I grabbed it the second I saw it!

Augusten Burroughs is one of the funniest writers and most enjoyable to read. I've read all his books and would recommend them all thoroughly. There are many things to praise about Burroughs. Among them is his self-deprecating humor. He wants to be a good person (he is actually a good person) and fights the negative thoughts he has almost constantly. He's a bit insecure. I think he used to be a bit unlikeable, but he's grown up a lot in this book.

When I read Laurie Notaro's first book, I loved it. When she grew up, however, and wrote her second book, she just wasn't funny anymore. That's not the case here. Burroughs has actually gotten better with age. He faces his fears, he is more honest than he used to be, he struggles with issues like the rest of us, but does all he can to be the best person he can be. And, he writes about it with spot-on insight and humor.

All of the book is excellent, but the vignette called Moving Violations was completely hysterical and a definite must-read to anyone who appreciates Burroughs' writing and the weirdness of life.
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I love running with scissors and Augusten Buroughs other books, this is maybe not so good. Although he still writes with wit and I did giggle in places. I feel after Running with scissors it is hard to write a book to match it. Worth while reading though.
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A Frank, sad, sometimes funny but always entertaining
This book looks behind the alcoholic., telling how he got there
and proving it is possible to function in everyday life.
Revealing, thought-provoking, and honest.
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Clearly I need a humour transplant as I have not found this book as funny as I had hoped. Commics relate life and exagerate a point until it becomes funny/ridiculous; these true stories evoke the response "Don't we all".
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