Gorilla and the Bird: A Memoir of Madness and a Mother's Love Info

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"Glorious...one of the best memoirs I've read in years...a
tragicomic gem about family, class, race, justice, and the spectacular
weirdness of Wichita. [McDermott] can move from barely controlled
hilarity to the brink of rage to aching tenderness in a single breath."
-- Marya Hornbacher, New York Times Book Review

McDermott, a 26-year-old Brooklyn public defender, woke up one morning
convinced he was being filmed, Truman Show-style, as part of an audition
for a TV pilot. Every passerby was an actor; every car would magically
stop for him; everything he saw was a cue from "The Producer" to help
inspire the performance of a lifetime. After a manic spree around
Manhattan, Zack, who is bipolar, was arrested on a subway platform and
admitted to Bellevue Hospital.
So begins the story of Zack's
freefall into psychosis and his desperate, poignant, often hilarious
struggle to claw his way back to sanity. It's a journey that will take
him from New York City back to his Kansas roots and to the one person
who might be able to save him, his tough, big-hearted Midwestern mother,
nicknamed the Bird, whose fierce and steadfast love is the light in
Zack's dark world.
Before his odyssey is over, Zack will be
tackled by guards in mental wards, run naked through cornfields, receive
secret messages from the TV, befriend a former Navy Seal and his
talking stuffed monkey, and see the Virgin Mary in the whorls of his own
back hair. But with the Bird's help, he just might have a shot at
pulling through, starting over, and maybe even meeting a partner who can
love him back, bipolar and all.
Introducing an electrifying
new voice, Gorilla and the Bird is a raw and unforgettable
account of a young man's unraveling and the relationship that saves

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