But I got invested in what the author had to tell, because I too was a struggling teen, although maybe not in quite such a messed up way he was. Essentially, it's a powerful, but deeply sad and lonely story of letting go. It revolves around the fears and paranoias the author had when growing up, but not just that - also all the losses suffered, and mostly the loss of a very important close friend.
Reading the book, and especially by the end, I was transfixed by how loved that friend must've been. There's a scene where he goes to her grave and is sad about the fact that there isn't even a marker with her name on it, no headstone or anything.
When I was finishing the book, I thought he built her the best monument ever - better than any stone would have ever been. A book that readers from across the world will stumble upon, read and think of his beloved best friend, while they look at a photo of her beautiful face, which is included, by the way. It's truly very gripping, when you think about it like that. I don't know if I can recommend this book or not. I enjoyed it, but it was also sad and hard to make anything of.
If you're doing some soul searching, you will probably enjoy it too. But in a way, I feel like keeping this book and my reading of it almost a personal moment. Just between the author and me.
Weird feeling, when you think about it — so many people read one author's book, right? But it wouldn't surprise you if you read this book too. There's just something about the way it was written that makes you feel that way. Like the reading a book that talks about such an intimate friendship also somehow becomes an intimate act. So I find myself submerged in the silence after having read it - wanting to just stay still and think about it some more. View all 4 comments. Jun 04, Chris rated it really liked it Shelves: won-on-goodreads.
I am so excited! I just found out that I won this book on GoodReads! I will read it as soon as I receive it. Thank you. Came home from work to find the book waiting for me. I was surprised to get it so quickly! Thank you again. I will post again once I have finished reading it.
Great book. I read the preface and really wasn't sure it would interest me, but once I started reading I couldn't stop. In fact, I was annoyed to go to work without finishing it! I love books that I connect with so I am so excited! I love books that I connect with so thoroughly. It was such an honest book--I think a lot of people will relate to this story. Many of us have had periods of real suffering and confusion and a lot of us internalize and don't share our pasts.
Sometimes just reading somone else's experiences can be cathartic. I will definitely share this book and will look for other books by Eric Nuzum. Jul 15, Sarah rated it it was ok Shelves: arc , own , nonfiction.
And I think seeing those two names had be expecting something very different from what I got. Additionally, I think the subtitle gives a different impression than what the book is really about. I'm not entirely sure I can elucidate what exactly this book is about - it's a memoir, I got that part covered.
But is it about Nuzum's fear of ghosts, grown from an adolescent belief that his room was haunted? Or is it about Nuzum's struggle with life and coping mechanisms, which ultimately led to a stay in the psychiatric ward? Or is it about Nuzum's complicated and undefined relationship with Laura, a girl he knew in his teenage years who died suddenly? I suppose it's about all these things, and others, but it doesn't really feel like the book I think it wanted to be.
With the quotes from Klosterman and Sheffield, I expected humor - and there is none of that in this book. In fact, I found this book depressing and not particularly pleasant to read. Additionally, I feel like this is a very incomplete memoir - it covers only a small period of Nuzum's life and definitely leaves the readers with more questions than answers. All this is not to say that it was terrible - it had its moments.
But it was not the book I expected to read and it just didn't end up being my cup of tea. I won this book from LibraryThing's Early Reviewers. View 1 comment. Aug 09, Caitlin rated it really liked it Shelves: One of the best things about Giving up the Ghost is that it is not the memoir you expect. It's not that. Not even close. If you were ever different as a kid, ever bullied or just shunned by the other kids around you, you're left with two basic choices: conform or defy them.
Nuzum chose to defy his One of the best things about Giving up the Ghost is that it is not the memoir you expect. Nuzum chose to defy his classmates and it's a choice I can relate to because I also steadfastly refused to conform and made a lot of bad choices along the way.
It was very easy to me to relate to Mr. Nuzum, stuck in small town Ohio, wanting something different, but not sure what, doing too much damage to yourself along the way. I was fortunate because my early bout with depression was caught at its beginning and I was very fortunate to see a wonderful therapist where I was first in college. At that time there weren't a lot of anti-depressant options, but she saw me three times a week, listened to me, guided me firmly, and helped me talk my way through to the other side.
I don't know what would have happened if I hadn't had her help. We all know what it's like to be haunted, I think - by people or places or dreams that never came true - something about all the possibilities that didn't reach their potential sticks with us.
It is all of that that is so hard to forget. Nuzum's brutally honest memoir takes the reader through one person's life so far and that person's attempts at self-destruction and ultimate desire to be whole.
While I'm not sure he reached the conclusions he might've wanted, the journey is interesting and I'm glad he chose to share it. Lots of people have similar pasts, similar ghosts, but not everyone writes about it with such straightforward honesty.
A good, if sometimes difficult, read. Jan 02, Scott Rhee rated it it was amazing Shelves: nonfiction , memoir , paranormal-studies. Everybody has a ghost story. I had what could be called a "paranormal" incident when I was younger, although as time passes and my skepticism grows, I often wonder if I imagined it.
There is a certain tragedy in that. Eric Nuzum, in his book "Giving Up the Ghost" would probably feel the same way. Nuzum, a Canton native, was personally haunted, in his dreams and in his everyday life, by a terror-inducing vision of a young girl in a blue dress starting when he was about ten years old until his Everybody has a ghost story.
Nuzum, a Canton native, was personally haunted, in his dreams and in his everyday life, by a terror-inducing vision of a young girl in a blue dress starting when he was about ten years old until his early 20s. These visions skeptics would call them "hallucinations" led him inevitably to thoughts of suicide and a short stint in a psychiatric hospital, although Little Girl as he began to call her was the least of his problems by the time he reached his teens.
Alcoholism, drug abuse, reckless and severe anti-social behavior were the norm. The one person to stand by him during this time was a friend named Laura, a girl with problems of her own. She was Nuzum's best friend and first true love. Years later, when Nuzum was out of college and living a relatively "normal" life, he found out that Laura was killed in a car accident. Today, Nuzum is happily married with a young son, but he is still haunted, and he knows he will be forever.
Alternating between his tumultuous past and a calmer present, Nuzum examines both a personal and public view of what it means to be haunted. Attending spiritualist conventions, seances, ghost hunting expeditions, and spending nights in extreme haunted locations such as the Mansfield Prison, Nuzum tries to find the answer to the age-old question, "Are ghosts real? As he elegantly puts it, "If by ghosts you mean cloudy spectral things that float around a room, say, "Boo," and then vaporize into thin air, then no.
I don't believe in that I don't believe that places are haunted, but I do believe people are haunted. People carry around the ghosts of their past, the people they've known, the world they've experienced. Most of the time, we never notice they are there. Nuzum has written a fantastic book that is both heart-warming, humorous, and, at times, goosebump-raising.
Regardless of whether one believes in actual supernatural entities we call ghosts or the psychological scars of a troubled past, "Giving Up the Ghost" touches upon the universal theme of grief, loss, and loneliness. Sep 09, Barry rated it really liked it. I heard the author interviewed on NPR and I was pretty apprehensive at first- a guy talking about his dark and tangled teen aged years, 80s rock, and the paranormal?
It could be right up my alley or force me to do serious neurological damage from severe and repeated eye-rolling. Tell us about this example sentence:. This is a good example of how the word is used.
The word in the example sentence does not match the entry word. The sentence contains offensive content. Cancel Submit. Your feedback will be reviewed. Our old TV had finally given up the ghost. UK to stop trying to do something because you know that you will not succeed :. Bitch you wasn't with me shooting in the gym Queffing Desert Queen Calabasas Fadeaway Believe me, I'd be doing you a favor, if I knocked you out cold. I'd burn it, this book, but I can feel it's not safe to do so here.
I feel certain it would leave an oily residue and its essence would I'm writing this review from the corner of my bedroom. I feel certain it would leave an oily residue and its essence would reconfigure, gather together in a green vapor and reform into the visage of Hilary Mantel's face from the front cover.
And haunt my ass, forevermore. This damn book. If memoir, then a memoir of madness. More likely. Be careful which words from the text you choose to read aloud. I can't even give it fewer than three stars, if only for the infrequent lucidity of some excellent advice on writing and for giving credit where credit is due. As in, disturbing me right down to my intestines. From the author herself: life is not long enough for all the intelligent variations on all the narratives of fear.
Damn straight, lady. You addressed several of my fears in one deceptively little and deceptively cute book. Mantel, you're a madwoman. You made me eat my nails for sustenance, made me wonder whether I'm wearing the white lab coat of the psychiatrist or the constraints of my own damn white straightjacket.
Which doesn't go well with anything else I wear--especially my new Calvins. And, Ms. Mantel, what I want to know is.
View all 38 comments. Hilary Mantel is one of my favourite novelists. Although it's often best not to know much about writers you admire, I'm an incurable sticky beak, so I had to read or rather listen to her memoir. Mantel is just a few years older than I am and I now know that we've had a number of similar life experiences.
Not literary-award winning life experiences obviously , but personal experiences that mark your life forever. So as I listened to the audiobook and reviewed my own life in the course of Hilary Mantel is one of my favourite novelists. So as I listened to the audiobook and reviewed my own life in the course of learning about Mantel's, I felt a kind of kinship with this brilliant, prickly, odd woman, who so often put into words what I only dimly sense.
This, for example: You come to this place, mid-life. When you turn and look back down the years, you glimpse the ghosts of other lives you might have led; all houses are haunted. The wraiths and phantoms creep under your carpets and between the warp and weft of fabric, they lurk in wardrobes and lie flat under drawer-liners.
You keep it filed in a drawer of your consciousness, like a short story that never worked after the opening lines. A memoir is an interesting literary phenomenon. It's not a biography, it's not an affidavit. In writing a memoir, Mantel was under no obligation to tell all. She could choose what to disclose and what to conceal. It appears that Mantel chose to conceal quite a bit, which on one level is frustrating, but is also completely understandable.
This was Mantel's story to tell, Mantel's opportunity to exorcise some demons, Mantel's opportunity to acknowledge the ghosts that populate her life. I'm grateful that through it she gave me an opportunity to examine my life by comparing it to hers.
In doing so I encountered quite a few ghosts of my own. View all 8 comments. Dec 09, Paul Bryant rated it liked it Shelves: autobiography-memoir. Hilary Mantel has been several different women in her unusual life — young and old, poor and rich, working class and middle class, rejected and vastly successful, really thin and very fat. And also a bit manic. Or so it seems. Memoirs the bonsai version of autobiographies are annoying mostly, like interrogating someone with their lawyer present.
And did it then break down a second time? What was up with the step father exactly? What was life like in Saudi Arabia? She invites you in, but you never do get the whole picture.
HM is now one of the Great and the Good in Britain, but she can still find herself in pretty hot water for opening her trap about the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton to you , calling her a personality-free shop window mannequin in a recent article.
Go Hilary! Like life itself, then. View all 14 comments. Feb 15, Canadian rated it liked it Shelves: illness-and-disease , british , read-in , autobiography-and-memoir , writers , women. She intermittently experienced wandering pains, intense fevers, extreme weakness, debilitating nausea, and migrainous visual disturbances.
Later, in her late teens and early twenties, when she was attending university and during her early marriage, her symptoms were thought to be psychiatric. She was treated with a number of psychotropic drugs—tricyclic antidepressants, benzodiazepines, and antipsychotics—some of which caused her to suffer hellish side effects.
By age 27, however, the writing was on the wall, and Mantel parsed most of it herself. She told a specialist at St. The specialist at St. Before the age of 30, then, a radical hysterectomy was performed. A length of damaged intestine and scar tissue were also excised. The regimen of drugs—hormone replacement therapy to compensate for early, surgically induced menopause—took a serious toll on her body, particularly on its shape. For almost thirty years, Mantel had been delicate, wafer thin, and fragile.
Now she became a ever-expanding bag of flesh, unrecognizable to herself. The hormonal treatment was largely to blame, but the fact that yet another endocrine gland, the thyroid responsible for metabolism had also failed was another significant factor. Mantel tells the reader that this memoir was a long and hard time coming, that she embarked on writing it with a certain trepidation, and that it represents an effort to pull herself together.
The long chapter dedicated to the middle part of her childhood is particularly taxing to read, as it is poorly organized. Mantel is six years old in one paragraph, eleven and a half in the next. Her strange familial relationships are never properly cleared up for the reader. This unconventional living arrangement occurred in a gossipy, tight-knit, and ready-to-be-morally-affronted Catholic neighbourhood in a small village.
The narrative ends up raising more questions than it answers. The reader is expected to make these jumps with Mantel, knowing little about the reason for them. I am not sorry to have read the book.
However, I tend to think her material needed to be further steeped in time. Certainly, the prose needed radical pruning and the mess of memories was begging for the imposition of order. Both would have made this a far more satisfying read for me. Rating: 2. View all 28 comments. Hilary Mantel has remarked that she had mixed feelings about publishing her memoir. She decided to set down her own story in an attempt "to seize the copyright in myself".
It was what he'd wanted-- needed-- but that didn't mean he enjoyed it. After a while though, Levi began to yawn and rub at his heavy eyelids to keep them open. Mike stopped in the middle of whatever yarn he'd been spinning something about the grocery store, Levi hadn't been keeping track very well to say, "Can I ask you something?
But Mike said nothing for a long time. Had Levi moved out of the reception zone and lost the call? He pulled his phone away from his face to check, but finally Mike's question emerged.
Each word was hesitant. With Erwin overshadowing him constantly, it was easy to forget how perceptive Mike could be. Of course, he'd probably been painfully obvious all these years. Levi's fingers twitched around the phone, stiff from clenching it for so long. It wasn't a lie. He didn't blame Mike for anything. Levi texted Erwin the next day, his eleventh day in the new apartment. It took him until late in the afternoon to figure out what to say.
He read each text draft aloud to himself, trying to determine whether they sounded too pissed, too pathetic, too emo. Finally, he settled on "busy catching up with work, i'll call you soon" and turned his phone off again, leaving it plugged in near the living room's eastern window. He didn't know when soon would be. Whenever he felt up to it, he supposed. Yet another item for the Eventually list.
When the banging came that night and the foreign panic shot into his veins, Levi didn't search for the source or seek out another soul to bear witness. He didn't even get out of bed. He just listened to heavy clashing, breathing carefully until he felt fully in control of his nerves again. Then Levi rolled onto his back and addressed the empty room.
He had to raise his voice to make himself heard over the noise. The banging stopped. Not abruptly, like how it'd started. It petered out, ringing in the apartment quieter and quieter until finally the last bang was little more than a whimper. The panic lifted away from Levi like a weight off his chest and he sucked in a deep breath. It rattled in his lungs like a sob. And somewhere-- somehow-- something in the dark listened.
Chapter 1 Notes: See the end of the chapter for notes. Chapter Text Levi wasn't in love with the place. Levi decided he could forgive them for their loud fucking. Levi heard. He did not sleep for the rest of the night. Ymir sputtered. Ask anyone at work. It wore Levi out. At least the food was good. Mike picked up finally, his deep voice extra throaty with sleep. Notes: give up the ghost: - to cease clinging to life; to die - to quit, to cease functioning - to cede a commitment to or identification with.
Post Comment Note: All fields are required. Your email address will not be published. Name: Email: Comment characters left.Jan 01, · At once hilarious and incredibly moving, Giving Up the Ghost is a memoir of lost love and second chances, and a ghost story like no other. Eric Nuzum is afraid of the supernatural, and for good reason: As a high school oddball in Canton, Ohio, during the early s, he became convinced that he was being haunted by the ghost of a little girl in a blue dress who lived in his/5.