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Running with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs
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Running with Scissors (edition 2006)

by Augusten Burroughs

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
12,059263214 (3.56)200
Member:fyrefly98
Title:Running with Scissors
Authors:Augusten Burroughs
Info:Picador (2006), Edition: Reprint, Paperback
Collections:Your library, Books I have read, Read but unowned
Rating:***
Tags:non-fiction, memoir, autobiography, humor, read 2007, 1970s, gay, mental illness, depression, coming of age, massachussetts, 1-a, 3-listened, R-2007-02, lgbt

Work details

Running With Scissors by Augusten Burroughs

  1. 100
    The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls (Monika_L)
  2. 40
    A Wolf at the Table: A Memoir of My Father by Augusten Burroughs (ParadoxicalRae)
  3. 30
    Mommie Dearest by Christina Crawford (Smiler69)
    Smiler69: Memoirs told by the adopted daughter of Joan Crawford, who by all accounts was a raging alcoholic.
  4. 42
    Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides (amberwitch)
  5. 10
    Devil in the Details: Scenes from an Obsessive Girlhood by Jennifer Traig (sarah-e)
    sarah-e: A funny memoir of a person with unusual habits.
  6. 10
    Look Me in the Eye: My Life with Asperger's by John Elder Robison (vancouverdeb)
    vancouverdeb: Look Me in the Eye written by John Elder Robinson, the elder brother ofAugusten Burroughs who wrote Running with Scissors. Each gives a different take on their dysfunctional family.
  7. 32
    Wicked by Gregory Maguire (khoov00)
    khoov00: This book seems to appeal to some with the same sense of humor as it would take to appreciate the book Wicked.
  8. 10
    Stitches: A Memoir by David Small (meggyweg)
  9. 10
    Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim by David Sedaris (LAKobow)
  10. 00
    Foreskin's Lament by Shalom Auslander (utterlyutter)
  11. 11
    Normal Family by Don Trowden (Publerati)
    Publerati: Eccentric family chaos except Normal Family is entirely set over four consecutive dysfunctional family holidays. Hysterical and bittersweet fun. Promising new writer.
  12. 00
    My Life in Orange: Growing Up with the Guru by Tim Guest (ainsleytewce)
  13. 00
    Sugarless by James Magruder (amberwitch)
  14. 00
    Between Nowhere and Happiness by Daniel Kine (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: A young poet battling apathy with drugs and other forms of experimental coping methods.
  15. 00
    An Underachiever's Diary by Benjamin Anastas (meggyweg)
  16. 00
    Bright Angel Time by Martha McPhee (ainsleytewce, ainsleytewce)
  17. 11
    A Million Little Pieces by James Frey (wonderlake)
    wonderlake: Crazy lives
  18. 12
    A Child Called "It" by Dave Pelzer (PortiaLong)
    PortiaLong: Disturbing memoirs - I disliked them both for the same reasons (so someone else may LIKE them for those same reasons).
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» See also 200 mentions

English (257)  Italian (2)  German (1)  French (1)  Portuguese (1)  All languages (262)
Showing 1-5 of 257 (next | show all)
Couldn't get into it.
  bogopea | Apr 4, 2016 |
Pretty wacky and entertaining. But how true is it? ( )
  ndpmcIntosh | Mar 21, 2016 |
There seemed to be a big hype over this book so I finally managed to take the time to read this, aka took it with me during a weekend trip to the beach. Needless to say, I wasn't sure what to expect out of it in the first place, but it wasn't as... great as I assumed it to be. There were a few quirky moments here and there, but overall, I was rather disappointed. I think my biggest issue with this memoir was that some tried to play it off as 'humorous' where I found it to be pushing a little too far. Especially with the notion that everything in this book was true... child care not at its finest. ( )
  ShayLRoss | Mar 16, 2016 |
Excellent read!! Loved it all the way. This guy has a style of writing I am envious of!! He takes serious situations and makes them laughable. He takes a basic story and makes it entertaining(Like the tv show Seinfeld). Great writing is the difference here!! Thank you. ( )
  yahscott | Mar 7, 2016 |
This is entertaining and funny in a horrible sort of way. It's billed as a "memoir" but he must have made some of it up. Please note - I do NOT find anything funny about child abuse, but I think the author is using humor as a shield from the pain - and he does it well.

Burroughs is talented and there are moments in this book that are simply hilarious. But this (if actually true) was a horrible upbringing. In light of the James Frey controversy, however, the reader MUST wonder re the veracity of the account.

If he is to be believed, Burrough's childhood was horrific - given by his mother (divorced from alcoholic dad) to her psychiatrist - who seems to be insane himself - Burroughs "grows up" in a house with no rules, no school, no protection from other patients (including the pedophile who becomes Burroughs' first "boyfriend"). It's a miracle he survived, let alone turned out half-way normal. ( )
  BookConcierge | Feb 12, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 257 (next | show all)
The book, which promotes visceral responses (of laughter, wincing, retching) on nearly every page, contains the kind of scenes that are often called harrowing but which are also plainly funny and rich with child's-eye details of adults who have gone off the rails.
 

» Add other authors (6 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Augusten Burroughsprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Leivo, ArtoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Look for the ridiculous in everything and you will find it.

Jules Renard
Dedication
For Dennis Pilsits
First words
My mother is standing in front of the bathroom mirror smelling polished and ready; like Jean Nate, Dippity Do and the waxy sweetness of lipstick.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
A memoir. A story told about a young boy's life living with his delusional mother, her unorthodox shrink, and his dysfunctional kids. A very interesting read!!!
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0312938853, Mass Market Paperback)

There is a passage early in Augusten Burroughs's harrowing and highly entertaining memoir, Running with Scissors, that speaks volumes about the author. While going to the garbage dump with his father, young Augusten spots a chipped, glass-top coffee table that he longs to bring home. "I knew I could hide the chip by fanning a display of magazines on the surface, like in a doctor's office," he writes, "And it certainly wouldn't be dirty after I polished it with Windex for three hours." There were certainly numerous chips in the childhood Burroughs describes: an alcoholic father, an unstable mother who gives him up for adoption to her therapist, and an adolescence spent as part of the therapist's eccentric extended family, gobbling prescription meds and fooling around with both an old electroshock machine and a pedophile who lives in a shed out back. But just as he dreamed of doing with that old table, Burroughs employs a vigorous program of decoration and fervent polishing to a life that many would have simply thrown in a landfill. Despite her abandonment, he never gives up on his increasingly unbalanced mother. And rather than despair about his lot, he glamorizes it: planning a "beauty empire" and performing an a capella version of "You Light Up My Life" at a local mental ward. Burroughs's perspective achieves a crucial balance for a memoir: emotional but not self-involved, observant but not clinical, funny but not deliberately comic. And it's ultimately a feel-good story: as he steers through a challenging childhood, there's always a sense that Burroughs's survivor mentality will guide him through and that the coffee table will be salvaged after all. --John Moe

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:46 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

The author describes his bizarre coming-of-age years after his adoption by his mother's psychiatrist, during which he witnessed such misadventures as a fake suicide attempt and front-lawn family/patient sleepovers.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 11 descriptions

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