Monday, May 14, 2012

BC2012: Lighting Up by Susan Shapiro

This book has one of the longest subtitles I've ever seen: "How I Stopped Smoking, Drinking and Everything Else I Loved in Life Except Sex." I bought it last Thanksgiving weekend at Half Price Books in the Kansas City area, as evidenced by an address label on the inside front cover from former owner Nancy H. of Shawnee Mission, KS. Ms. H. also left behind a "Novel Scents" bookmark that apparently is supposed to smell like fresh orange but now just smells like old paper.

There are roughly two billion addiction memoirs scattered among America's bookstores, and I usually try to avoid them. But the wordy subtitle caught my eye, and sampling a few pages of Shapiro's writing had me chuckling in the aisle.

What made me choose to read this book at this time? Blame those TV commercials for the NicoDerm CQ, the ones with the miniature band singing "Ain't No Mountain High Enough." Seriously!

Lighting Up is pretty funny, but it gets pretty weird, too. While Shapiro sheds her bad habits, she becomes addicted to her therapist. And the more therapy she has, the more she acts like a therapist toward others, including her own therapist, quizzing people and drawing conclusions about their psyches and their addictions.What's crazier than dropping $175/hour for therapy? Dropping $175/hour to ask your therapist questions about his personal life!