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Home » Books » Biography » Personal Memoirs

One of These Things First

By Steven Gaines

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Format: Paperback, 208 pages
Published In: United States, 05 September 2017
One of These Things First is a wry and poignant reminiscence of a 15 year old gay Jewish boy in Brooklyn in the early sixties, and his unexpected trajectory from a life behind a rack of dresses in his grandmother's bra and girdle store, to Manhattan's fabled Payne Whitney Psychiatric Clinic, a fashionable Charenton for wealthy neurotics and Ivy League alcoholics, whose famous alumni include writers, poets, madmen, Marilyn Monroe, and bestselling author Steven Gaines.With a gimlet eye and a true gift for storytelling, Gaines captures his childhood shtetl in Brooklyn like an Edward Hopper tableau, with all its dramas and secrets: his philandering grandfather with his fleet of Cadillacs and Corvettes; a trio of harpy saleswomen; a giant, empty movie theater, his portal to the outside world; a shirtless teenage boy pushing a lawnmower in front of a house on Long Island; and a pair of tormenting bullies who own the corner candy store whose taunts drive him to a suicide attempt.Steven Gaines also takes the reader behind the walls of Payne Whitney, the "Harvard of psychiatric clinics," as Time magazine called it, populated by a captivating group of neurasthenics who subtly begin to change him in unexpected ways. The cast of characters includes a famous Broadway producer who becomes his unlikely mentor, an elegant woman who claimed to be the ex-mistress of newly elected president John F. Kennedy, a snooty, suicidal Harvard architect, and a seductive young Contessa. At the center of the story is a brilliant young psychiatrist who promises to cure a young boy of his homosexuality and give him the normalcy he so longs for. Through it all, Gaines weaves a tale that delights and disturbs with his trademark raconteur panache.

Reviews

An absolute treasure. --New York Times Book Review" An extraordinary book. Incredibly moving and beautifully written. --Jay McInerney" Humane and generous Shocking, funny, and sometimes shockingly funny. A real treasure. --Boston Globe" By turns comic, honest, and riveting, --Publishers Weekly" A candid, entertaining memoir A spirited narrative of a hard-won coming-of-age."--Kirkus" Gaines' readers accompany him on this heart wrenching, funny, ultimately triumphant journey. --Bay Area Reporter" "An absolute treasure."--New York Times Book Review "An extraordinary book. Incredibly moving and beautifully written."--Jay McInerney "Humane and generous...Shocking, funny, and sometimes shockingly funny. A real treasure."--Boston Globe "By turns comic, honest, and riveting,"--Publishers Weekly "A candid, entertaining memoir... A spirited narrative of a hard-won coming-of-age."--Kirkus "Gaines' readers accompany him on this heart wrenching, funny, ultimately triumphant journey."--Bay Area Reporter -An absolute treasure.---New York Times Book Review -An extraordinary book. Incredibly moving and beautifully written.---Jay McInerney -Humane and generous...Shocking, funny, and sometimes shockingly funny. A real treasure.---Boston Globe -By turns comic, honest, and riveting,---Publishers Weekly -A candid, entertaining memoir... A spirited narrative of a hard-won coming-of-age.---Kirkus -Gaines' readers accompany him on this heart wrenching, funny, ultimately triumphant journey.---Bay Area Reporter -A poignant and funny book that proves it does get better.---Joy Behar, The View -This is a memoir for anyone who loves Paddy Chayefsky and Hanya Yanigahara. Steven Gaines has turned his considerable journalistic talents onto his younger self, writing a lyrical, wry and precisely excavated book.---Carl Swanson, New York Magazine -Years ago Dominick Dunne called Steven Gaines 'a born storyteller.' If anything, we now know Gaines was meant to write his own powerful, heart-wrenching, and funny life story. I could not put it down.---Steven Petrow, The Washington Post "A poignant and funny book that proves it does get better."--Joy Behar, The View "This is a memoir for anyone who loves Paddy Chayefsky and Hanya Yanigahara. Steven Gaines has turned his considerable journalistic talents onto his younger self, writing a lyrical, wry and precisely excavated book."--Carl Swanson, New York Magazine "Years ago Dominick Dunne called Steven Gaines 'a born storyteller.' If anything, we now know Gaines was meant to write his own powerful, heart-wrenching, and funny life story. I could not put it down."--Steven Petrow, The Washington Post A poignant and funny book that proves it does get better. --Joy Behar, The View" This is a memoir for anyone who loves Paddy Chayefsky and Hanya Yanigahara. Steven Gaines has turned his considerable journalistic talents onto his younger self, writing a lyrical, wry and precisely excavated book. --Carl Swanson, New York Magazine" Years ago Dominick Dunne called Steven Gaines 'a born storyteller.' If anything, we now know Gaines was meant to write his own powerful, heart-wrenching, and funny life story. I could not put it down. --Steven Petrow, The Washington Post"

EAN: 9781883285715
ISBN: 1883285712
Publisher: Delphinium Books
Dimensions: 20.83 x 13.97 x 1.52 centimetres (0.30 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years
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