"People think I'm nuts. They think that I am a killer, a badass, and a dangerous woman."~Crazy Enough, Storm Large
Published in January 2012, Crazy Enough is the story of her life so far. As I began the first chapter (you wouldn't believe the opening line), I was flung out of my "comfort zone", hard and headfirst. Storm is very troubled by her mother, Suzi's, frequent bouts of mental illness and hospitalizations, and understandably worries about her own future when a doctor tells her that she, too, will be "crazy" like her mother when she's older (in her twenties). I was discomfited the entire time I was reading this book, and often on the verge of tears; I felt that Storm desperately needed a mother to guide her through childhood, but her mother was absent, often in the hospital or institutionalized for months at a time, being treated for various, nebulous mental illnesses. As a consequence, as a child in the town of Southborough, MA, Storm was left to her own devices, and unfortunately drawn to dangerous things, such as sex and drugs. Her father, Henry, tried to be a good parent to Storm and her brothers, John and (also) Henry, but he had to work long hours in order to support his family and his wife's expensive, never-ending health care.
While I found some of the language hard to take, this book is so real and honest and funny that it won me over almost immediately. Storm doesn't sugar-coat anything in her memoir, and is truthful about her experiences and feelings. Her early bouts with sex and her hypersexuality, as well as her experiences with alcohol and drugs (including heroin!) were strange and fascinating to read about. I could not put this book down, and finished it over the course of a few days.
"You know her life was saved by rock 'n' roll."~Rock 'n' Roll, Lou Reed, The Velvet Underground
After a tumultuous childhood, Storm attended acting school in NY, turned to music, and gradually achieved success as a singer (her powerful rendition of Where is My Mind is breathtaking), fronting bands and releasing albums, and landed a part on the TV reality show Rock Star: Supernova (which I'd love to see), and a role in the musical, Cabaret. Eventually, she created her hit one-woman show, Crazy Enough (which I'd also love to see). This bold book tells her story candidly, and while it was disturbing to read at times, Storm's story is one of determination, survival, and triumph, and one that I will not be able to forget.
Special thanks to Kristin from Simon & Schuster for sending me a copy of Crazy Enough.