Saint Mary Blue Paperback – Nov 20 2000
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About the Author
Hugo, Nebula and Campbell Award winner, Barry Longyear is author of the acclaimed Enemy Mine, made into a motion picture by Fox. Recent works include The Enemy Papers and Yesterday's Tomorrow. Having completed training as a PI, his current work is a mystery titled The Hangman's Son. He lives with his wife Jean in New Sharon, Maine.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Jacob is an addict. He is addicted to alcohol and prescription medications. But then that's the most common kind. He doesn't think that he needs help but his wife and his friends, (the ones he has left), are adamant that he does. They use all of the pressure that they can, to get him to go to a rehab center called Saint Mary's. This is an actual hospital in the U.S.
The novel takes us through the program with Jacob and his group. We come to love Jake and each of his group. We also fall for the members of the hospital staff that we meet. It is that sort of book. I hope writing this book was cathartic for Longyear because reading it sure was for me.
I want to leave you with a small section from the dust jacket that I think may have helped my decision to read this book:
- One third will make it the first time around.
- One third will have to try again.
- One third are already dead. It just takes them a while to lie down.
Relying on his wry sardonic wit, he copes with institutional food at the "Constipated Eagle" and fellow patients like Snake, the biker, and Elliot, the sanctimonious Episcopal priest. Along the way the Angela, Jake's head councilor, is transformed from his chief inquisitor to his first real hero.
Tension builds as Jake prepares for family week when his strong yet vulnerable wife, Ann, will confront him with the thoughtless and dangerous behavior that led him to St. Mary's.
Will Jake be among the center's successful graduates or will he succumb to his addictions? I don't want to give the ending away, but the book is somewhat autobiographical and judging from Barry B. Longyear's web site, he and his lovely wife Jean are living happily ever after in Maine. I like happy endings and I like St. Mary Blue.