From David Carr (1956–2015), the “undeniably brilliant and dogged journalist” (Entertainment Weekly) and author of the instant New York Times bestseller that the Chicago Sun-Times called “a compelling tale of drug abuse, despair, and, finally, hope.”
Do we remember only the stories we can live with? The ones that make us look good in the rearview mirror? In The Night of the Gun, David Carr redefines memoir with the revelatory story of his years as an addict and chronicles his journey from crack-house regular to regular columnist for The New York Times. Built on sixty videotaped interviews, legal and medical records, and three years of reporting, The Night of the Gun is a ferocious tale that uses the tools of journalism to fact-check the past. Carr’s investigation of his own history reveals that his odyssey through addiction, recovery, cancer, and life as a single parent was far more harrowing—and, in the end, more miraculous—than he allowed himself to remember.
Fierce, gritty, and remarkable, The Night of the Gun is “an odyssey you’ll find hard to forget” (People).
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
At the time of his death in 2015, David Carr was an acclaimed New York Times journalist and a proud family man. But Carr wasn't always at the top of his game, as his brilliant 2008 memoir of addiction illustrated. What sets The Night of the Gun apart is not only the gutsiness of Carr’s writing and his piercing investigative talents—which led him to examine official documents and interview loved ones in order to fully capture his downward spiral. It’s the humility, warmth, and gratitude that spring off the page, a reminder that a good life is something not to be squandered or taken for granted.
An intriguing premise informs Carr's memoir of drug addiction he went back to his hometown of Minneapolis and interviewed the friends, lovers and family members who witnessed his downfall. A successful, albeit hard-partying, journalist, Carr developed a taste for coke that led him to smoke and shoot the drug. At the height of his use in the late 1980s, his similarly addicted girlfriend gave birth to twin daughters. Carr, now a New York Times columnist, gives both the lowlights of his addiction (the fights, binges and arrests) as well as the painstaking reconstruction of his life. Soon after he quit drugs, he was thrown for another loop when he was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma. Unfortunately, the book is less a real investigation of his life than an anecdotal chronicle of wild behavior. What's more, his clinical approach (he videotaped all his interviews), meant to create context, sometimes distances readers from it. By turns self-consciously prurient and intentionally vague, Carr tends to jump back and forth in time within the narrative, leaving the book strangely incoherent.
For a book about man I had never heard of before this, I came away feeling like I really know David Carr. And like him.
Wow. This most exquisite telling of self destruction, redemption, and reality I’ve ever read.
we lost a good one
" it's been a long and glorious ride , anchored by two people who shook hands on the future the day they met ...."