Seven Stories Press

Works of Radical Imagination

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Preface by Kurt Vonnegut

Winner of the American Library Association Notable Book Award

"Most diseases can be separated from one's self . . . schizophrenia is something we are." Those words are the beginning of Mark Vonnegut's extraordinary depiction of his two "crack-ups."

The Eden Express describes from the inside Mark Vonnegut's experience in the late '60s and early '70s—a recent college grad; in love; living communally on a farm, with a famous and doting father, cherished dog, and prized jalopy—and then the nervous breakdowns in all their slow-motion intimacy, the taste of mortality and opportunity for humor they provided, and the grim despair they afforded as well. That he emerged to write this funny and true book and then moved on to find the meaningful life that for a while had seemed beyond reach is what ultimately happens in The Eden Express. But the real story here is that throughout his harrowing experience his sense of humor let him see the humanity of what he was going through, and his gift of language let him describe it in such a moving way that others could begin to imagine both its utter ordinariness as well as the madness we all share.

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“One of the best books about going crazy. . . . Required reading for those who want to understand insanity from the inside.”

“Mark Vonnegut's remembrance of what it was like in the 1960s is not only a memoir about his loss of political and social innocence, and ours, but a surprisingly good-natured trip through his own head.”

“A remarkable book.”

“A painfully honest document of life in transition.”

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After writing The Eden Express, a memoir detailing his struggle with schizophrenia, Mark Vonnegut went to medical school. He lives with his wife and two children in Milton, Massachusetts, where he is a full-time practicing pediatrician. His latest book is Just Like Someone Without Mental Illness Only More So.