The Recovering by Leslie Jamison
I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to write about this book! The Recovering is, quite simply, one of the best books I’ve ever read. Jamison is the kind of writer I don’t even waste my time wishing to become because I know she’s in the realm of the impossible.
My dad gave me her book of essays, Empathy Exams, awhile back. I was so impressed and excited by it, albeit a little discouraged realising the author was only a few years older than me, that when I heard Jamison had written a book about addiction, and the connection between creativity and addiction, I felt like screaming. This is my jam, man! And who better than the oh-so eloquent Jamison?
The Recovering is what a memoir should be. Curious. Compelling. Courageous. Jamison weaves stories of literary figures and their struggles with addiction with her own journey of recovery, and asks how do myths around addiction and creativity serve us? And what does a life of recovery actually mean?
Once subscribed to the trainwreck=creativity myth, I found looking at recovery and the ways in which it’s actually conducive to creativity refreshing. I’m also very attracted to the way Jamison molds journalism, cultural studies, literary criticism and personal essay into one big bomb of amazingness. Crushing hard ❤️ I love this woman!