When I used to work in the bookstore, I used to walk by this book in the biography section. See, the biography section was strangely right next to the cash wrap, so every time I left the register to shelve a book, direct a customer to the Bestseller wall (which was right up front and the customer literally just walked by the wall to ask me where the wall was), or to hide in the back for a moment, I would pass this one book. It was an orange colored book with a little boy in a striped shirt with a box on his head. The title was Running with Scissors. I would walk past the book and chuckle at the title and remind myself each and every time I saw it I had to read that book.

It wasn’t until years later I actually picked up the book and read it. The book changed my life. With that book, I saw a natural born writer. Burroughs told his story and asked nothing of his readers but to listen to him. The book wasn’t out for revenge. It wasn’t an expose. The book was Burroughs’ life and it was inspiring because he had that raw writing talent all along. Maybe it wasn’t his first pursuit when he went to New York, but writing was the one thing he was destined to do.

Because of his book, I started writing again. So, blame him. It’s all Augusten Burroughs’ fault I subject everyone to my blog and my stories!

Every book he has written I have purchased and some of them multiple times. I think I have purchased Running with Scissors about five or six times because I want others to read his book, so I give them my copy and I never get it back. When I heard You Better Not Cry was released, I dug into the seats of my couch and car and found the twenty-two bucks to buy the book.

Burroughs’ did not disappoint me.

I laughed along with him as he recounted his childhood Christmases. Sure, I never ate a wax life size Santa Claus, but I do recall etching my name in the canned snow frosted window. I smiled thinking about the crappy stocking stuffers like apples and oranges I used to get while I read Burroughs’ stocking stuffers from his dad.

But the last two chapters, I didn’t want to read. For me, “The Best and Only Everything” was probably the most difficult one to get through because I knew who it was about. It’s not because Augusten and I are BFF and I know all his people like that, it’s just that I read all his books.

If you need an example of powerfully, raw, emotional writing, read “The Best and Only Everything”. The way Burroughs’ describes a person’s brown eyes is just so moving. I can’t even describe what it was like reading the description. I have rewritten the sentences in which I try to tell you what it was like twenty times and checked my email twice just trying to put into words the intense feeling I had as I read his words. Burroughs’ isn’t just a memoir writer; he is a literary talent. I humbly bow to him.

I hate seeing a Burroughs’ book end; therefore, when “Silent Night” was looking back at me, I just put the book away for a few days. I knew after I read that chapter, I had no more new things to read. Sure, I could go back in the book and reread…but it isn’t the same.

This holiday season, there will be many holiday themed books begging for you readership. Burroughs’ book, You Better Not Cry will take you on an adventure. You will cry a bit and you will laugh. You may even see some parts of your holiday mirrored back at you. Treat yourself and read this book.

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