The Contortionist Handbook by Craig Clevenger
If you tried to kill yourself every time you got a migraine headache it might make you neurotic, compulsive and delusional. This novel captures it so well that I started feeling nervous and jerky myself. At times I felt overwhelmed by every minuet detail in the hospital and with therapists, but it serves to drive the point home that this guy is totally messed up. Each time John is revived from his self-medicated near death experience he tries to trick the doctors of his intention and identity. All the psychotic repetition is well worth it. It helps to set up his relationships women. My favorite was Sudden a woman who’s a stripper and gets him hooked on cocaine. Her erotic dark side was fascinating and left me wanting more. John’s criminal ability to switch his persona with other people was amazing. I would’ve loved more dating and crime but I still loved this twisted story. I’m still wondering if John was brilliant, insane or crazy.
Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts
This is by far the best book I've ever read. Look at the reviews, there's over 1,800. I only wish I could give it ten stars. The main character, Lin goes through a moral, spiritual and emotional journey after escaping from prison in Australia, he hides in Bombay, India. The story has everything; Crime, Romance, Adventure, Friendship, War and a deep emotional peek inside India culture. I was so engaged at times that I laughed out loud and cried along the way. I've recommended Shantaram to family, friends and anyone I meet. Every person who's read it has had the same reaction and thanked me. There are so many incredible scenes that to this day this is still my favorite novel. Worth every penny... I've read it twice and I know I'll read it again to be with old friends and nasty enemies. You'll never find another novel like it.
131 Reviews, 53 are Five Star ★★★★★. 73% of reviews are 4 and 5 Star. Review Average 4.0