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Running with Scissors

Running with Scissors

A Memoir

Augusten Burroughs

St. Martin's Press

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Now including an excerpt from Lust & Wonder, a new memoir coming in March 2016.

Running with Scissors is the true story of a boy whose mother (a poet with delusions of Anne Sexton) gave him away to be raised by her psychiatrist, a dead-ringer for Santa and a lunatic in the bargain. Suddenly, at age twelve, Augusten Burroughs found himself living in a dilapidated Victorian in perfect squalor. The doctor's bizarre family, a few patients, and a pedophile living in the backyard shed completed the tableau. Here, there were no rules, there was no school. The Christmas tree stayed up until summer, and Valium was eaten like Pez. And when things got dull, there was always the vintage electroshock therapy machine under the stairs....

Running with Scissors is at turns foul and harrowing, compelling and maniacally funny. But above all, it chronicles an ordinary boy's survival under the most extraordinary circumstances.

Book Sense Book of the Year Award - Nominee

Praise for Running with Scissors

“I just finished reading the most amazing book. Running with Scissors is hilarious, freaky-deaky, berserk, controlled, transcendent, touching, affectionate, vengeful, all-embracing....It makes a good run at blowing every other [memoir] out of the water.” —Carolyn See, The Washington Post

“Funny and rich with child's eye details of adults who have gone off the rails.” —The New York Times Book Review

“It is as funny as it is twisted.” —GQ

“A hilarious and horrifying memoir.” —Los Angeles Times

“Harrowing and hilarious. I haven't laughed this much since David Sedaris's last book.” —Haven Kimmel, author of A Girl Named Zippy

Running with Scissors is a cut above...compelling...the book celebrates Burroughs' resilient, upbeat spirit, which helps him surmount one of the weirder childhoods on record.” —USA Today

“The anecdotes can be so flippant, and so insanely funny (quite literally), that the effect is that of a William Burroughs situation comedy.” —The New York Times

“Burroughs defies the 'woe is me' stigma of modern memoir with a raucous recounting of his loony teenage years.” —Entertainment Weekly

“I was reminded of Roald Dahl's Boy and A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius. Augusten Burroughs has produced a memoir that's funny and sharp but also humane, as charming as it is revealing.” —Kurt Andersen, author of Turn of the Century

“A memoir that is both horrifying and mordantly funny.” —San Francisco Chronicle

“Burroughs has memorialized his bizarre … More…

“I just finished reading the most amazing book. Running with Scissors is hilarious, freaky-deaky, berserk, controlled, transcendent, touching, affectionate, vengeful, all-embracing....It makes a good run at blowing every other [memoir] out of the water.” —Carolyn See, The Washington Post

“Funny and rich with child's eye details of adults who have gone off the rails.” —The New York Times Book Review

“It is as funny as it is twisted.” —GQ

“A hilarious and horrifying memoir.” —Los Angeles Times

“Harrowing and hilarious. I haven't laughed this much since David Sedaris's last book.” —Haven Kimmel, author of A Girl Named Zippy

Running with Scissors is a cut above...compelling...the book celebrates Burroughs' resilient, upbeat spirit, which helps him surmount one of the weirder childhoods on record.” —USA Today

“The anecdotes can be so flippant, and so insanely funny (quite literally), that the effect is that of a William Burroughs situation comedy.” —The New York Times

“Burroughs defies the 'woe is me' stigma of modern memoir with a raucous recounting of his loony teenage years.” —Entertainment Weekly

“I was reminded of Roald Dahl's Boy and A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius. Augusten Burroughs has produced a memoir that's funny and sharp but also humane, as charming as it is revealing.” —Kurt Andersen, author of Turn of the Century

“A memoir that is both horrifying and mordantly funny.” —San Francisco Chronicle

“Burroughs has memorialized his bizarre childhood showing off a dark wit that often rivals that of David Sedaris--while telling a true story that would make even Sedaris cringe.” —New York Magazine

“Burroughs tempers the pathos with sharp riotous humor... Edgier, but reminiscent of Dave Eggers' A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, this is a survival story readers won't forget.” —Booklist

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Reviews from Goodreads

Augusten Burroughs

Augusten Burroughs is the number one New York Times bestselling author of Dry, Magical Thinking, Possible Side Effects, A Wolf at the Table and You Better Not Cry. He is also the author of the novel Sellevision, which is currently in development for film. The film version of Running with Scissors, directed by Ryan Murphy and produced by Brad Pitt, was released in October 2006 and starred Joseph Cross, Brian Cox, Annette Bening (nominated for a Golden Globe for her role), Alec Baldwin and Evan Rachel Wood. Augusten's writing has appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers around the world including The New York Times and New York Magazine. In 2005 Entertainment Weekly named him one of "The 25 Funniest People in America." He resides in New York City. His forthcoming memoir Lust & Wonder will be published in March 2016.

image of Augusten Burroughso
Photo: AXB

Augusten Burroughs

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