by Wilfred Sheed, 252 pp, with illus, $23, ISBN 0-671-79215-6, New York, NY, Simon & Schuster, 1995.
This is a lovely book. The world's most boring piece of advice—"You must read this"—becomes irresistible.
Of course, people mustn't do anything. Properly, must readers should be reduced to doctors (all doctors), people with alcohol and pill problems, and people who deal with these people. Tens of millions at most.
The author went through the alcohol and pill problem and, after two years of almost unbearable suffering, recovered. He had led the jolly drinking life of New York writer/editor for 35 years, then started mixing benzodiazepines and booze, and his life, like a gravitationally collapsing star, disappeared from the universe: a black hole. Many people would have predicted that he would be dead in a short time—very likely by suicide. (At one point, if he had had a gun, they probably would have been right.)
When he finally recovered (and what a recovery!), he decided that drinking was fun but
Goodwin DW. In Love With Daylight: A Memoir of Recovery. JAMA. 1995;274(6):506. doi:10.1001/jama.1995.03530060082041