Running With Scissors: A Memoir by Augusten BurroughsRunning With Scissors: A Memoir by Augusten Burroughs

Running With Scissors: A Memoir

byAugusten Burroughs

Paperback | June 1, 2003

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The #1 New York Times Bestseller

An Entertainment Weekly Top Ten Book of the Year

Now a Major Motion Picture

Running with Scissors is the true story of a boy whose mother (a poet with delusions of Anne Sexton) gave him away to be raised by her unorthodox psychiatrist who bore a striking resemblance to Santa Claus. So at the age of twelve, Burroughs found himself amidst Victorian squalor living with the doctor's bizarre family, and befriending a pedophile who resided in the backyard shed. The story of an outlaw childhood where rules were unheard of, and the Christmas tree stayed up all year round, where Valium was consumed like candy, and if things got dull an electroshock- therapy machine could provide entertainment. The funny, harrowing and bestselling account of an ordinary boy's survival under the most extraordinary circumstances.

Running with Scissors Acknowledgments
Gratitude doesn't begin to describe it: Jennifer Enderlin, Christopher Schelling, John Murphy, Gregg Sullivan, Kim Cardascia, Michael Storrings, and everyone at St. Martin's Press. Thank you: Lawrence David, Suzanne Finnamore, Robert Rodi, Bret Easton Ellis, Jon Pepoon, Lee Lodes, Jeff Soares, Kevin Weidenbacher, Lynda Pearson, Lona Walburn, Lori Greenburg, John DePretis, and Sheila Cobb. I would also like to express my appreciation to my mother and father for, no matter how inadvertently, giving me such a memorable childhood. Additionally, I would like to thank the real-life members of the family portrayed in this book for taking me into their home and accepting me as one of their own. I recognize that their memories of the events described in this book are different than my own. They are each fine, decent, and hard-working people. The book was not intended to hurt the family. Both my publisher and I regret any unintentional harm resulting from the publishing and marketing of Running with Scissors. Most of all, I would like to thank my brother for demonstrating, by example, the importance of being wholly unique.

Augusten Burroughs is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dry, Magical Thinking, and, most recently, Possible Side Effects, which were also New York Times bestsellers. Augusten has been named one of the fifteen funniest people in America by Entertainment Weekly. He lives in New York City and western Massachusetts.
Title:Running With Scissors: A MemoirFormat:PaperbackProduct dimensions:336 pages, 8.17 × 5.54 × 0.88 inShipping dimensions:8.17 × 5.54 × 0.88 inPublished:June 1, 2003Publisher:PicadorLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:031242227X

ISBN - 13:9780312422271


Rated 5 out of 5 by from Shocking A good memoir of an extremely shocking childhood. The fact that what he endured was allowed is even sadder. The whole cast of characters although true felt like it was a John Waters film.
Date published: 2018-07-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I loved this book The book is very good, I saw the movie as well. It made me laugh and cry
Date published: 2018-01-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow simply the most beautiful memoir I've ever read. James Frey, please read this.
Date published: 2018-01-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Crazy life This book was very well written. The author has an absolutely crazy life. Couldn't put it down as I wanted to know what happens next.
Date published: 2017-10-29
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Insane life As always Burroughs is very depressing, but his insane life (if true) is very captivating to read about. I would only recommend his work, however, if you are bored and just want to be entertained.
Date published: 2017-10-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from This author is an utter genius. A definite must read! It was an excellent read! It was written so well and intricate yet it was simple and honest and funny! Such a tragic story told with a humorous twist. A definite must read!
Date published: 2017-09-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Fun A hilarious, funny but freaky autobiography. Clever writing - Burroughs really knows how to tell good stories. I enjoyed this book with many LOL moments, but would agree that this is not something for the conservatives or anyone with existing cardiac problems.
Date published: 2017-08-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from What an excellent read! It was written so well and intricate yet it was simple and honest and funny! This author is an utter genius.
Date published: 2017-08-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved the book and movie I can't remember if I read this before the movie or the other way around, but I loved both.
Date published: 2017-07-11
Rated 2 out of 5 by from The film is an interesting an engaging story the book is a disappointment I liked film better the book. On the page things seemed tepid. It wasn't terrible but it wasn't great or insightful either. It was just a stagnant ball of weirdness for me at least. The book is not recommended but you should see the movie.
Date published: 2017-02-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Don't see the film... please? I loved this book so much and was so excited when it was made into a film, but I was sorely disappointed! Read the book. Savor its twisted reality and the amazing journey of little Gus. The film does it ZERO justice. The story is just amazing!
Date published: 2017-01-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An Amazing Book! This is one of my all time favourite books. It is an emotional rollercoaster that is impossible to put down.
Date published: 2017-01-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Can't put it down! I could not put this one down, I have read it twice. Burroughs is one of my favourite authors. This was the first book of his I read and was hooked. I would think - Is this for real? As so bizarre at times you hope it's not really this guys life.
Date published: 2017-01-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book Great book! Quick read, didn't want to put it down.
Date published: 2016-12-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Emotional rollercoaster This novel is funny, sad, disturbing, heartbreaking and everything in between! I immediately loved the novel and was enthralled in the story and the lives of those depicted!
Date published: 2016-11-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Running with Scissors This book pulls you threw a whole range of emotions. excellent
Date published: 2016-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from RUNNING WITH SCISSORS Quite humorous but also sad and tragic
Date published: 2014-10-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from RUNNING WITH SCISSORS Quite humorous but also sad and tragic
Date published: 2014-10-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from RUNNING WITH SCISSORS Love love love this book and the series... definitely a must read!
Date published: 2014-01-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome As usual Burroughs delivers a great read!
Date published: 2013-11-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Shocking Yet Amazing! While there were many times in this book that I had to momentarily stop reading to ask myself "did I really just read that?!" I truly enjoyed Running With Scissors. I couldn't go five pages without reading something that shocked, disgusted, or intrigued me. I can't believe some of the things that this boy went through by the time he was 16 years old. He went through more in those short 16 years than any person should have to go through their whole life. I can't wait to read Augusten's other books, and I'm even going to look into his brother's book(s?).
Date published: 2011-05-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One Of A Kind If you're looking to read something original then chances are you won't finda anything more original than Burroughs's debut memoir. It was an enjoyable read definitely not what you would suspect someone to go through in ones life. There was some things that was so out there that I didn't know if this really happened or that he made up.
Date published: 2011-02-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Hard To Believe & Hard To Put Down This book was shocking. I can't believe the things that Augusten went through growing up are actually true. Some of the stories he tells are so completely out there and hard to imagine ever happening...which is what makes this book so wonderful. I would recommend this, it's funny and hard to put down because you want to know what his crazy family will do next. I've already ordered his next book and can't wait to read it.
Date published: 2009-02-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved it I really enjoyed this book. It took me right back to the same era when I grew up, but it did it in a subtle, nonobvious way. I would definitely recommend this to anyone who grew up in the late 1960s or early 1970s.
Date published: 2009-02-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Bizarre Craziest book that I have read yet. Loved it!!! Very Bizarre and unbelievable at times, I needed to keep reading so quickly to find out what unusual things were going to happen next. "Dry" was a bit slow and predictable.
Date published: 2007-02-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Who said running with scissors was a bad thing?!? Witty, darkly humourous and all in all a great read. Loved it!
Date published: 2006-07-21
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Glad it is not me! This book was good, but not great. I found it a little slow at first but by the first few chapters I could hardly put it down. I can't not believe that people really live like this and it makes you happy to have a "normal" life!
Date published: 2006-07-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Couldn't Get Enough Running with scissors is one of my favorite books. I literally read it in one night because I just could not put it down for one minute. Most of the content is not for the average person and you really have to have an open mind to read it. You start to really feel for Augusten, and you become so proud of him when he overcomes all the madness in his life. I will be the first in line to see it at the movies when it's released.
Date published: 2006-07-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from LOVE IT I was scheptical when I first began the book but now I'm totally hooked! I'm more than halfway done and I've caught myself laughing out loud and sparking my bf's interest in the process. I still can't get over how "normal" he turned out in spite of the trials and tribulations the author went through growing up! I highly recommend this book!
Date published: 2006-06-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from WOW! This book was wow! I came upon it by accident am I ever glad that it did. At times I thought he was the crazy one and not the people in his life. I often found myself feeling sorry for Augusten, but on the other hand thare was plenty of humour in his life aswell. I laughed through-out the whole book. The book was wonderfully written I am looking forward to reading all the books he has to offer. This book is a must read I reccomend it to everyone you will not be able to set it down i know I didn't.
Date published: 2006-06-13
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Interesting and entertaining, yet mildly distrubin This book is an easy to read and entertaining account of an incredibly odd childhood upbringing. Its mildly disturbing portrayal of a life which borders on what few would consider normal made me reflect on my own childhood and its "normalcy" in comparison.
Date published: 2006-06-11
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Addams Familyish His story makes you wonder how he is able to be so matter of fact, yet he is. It's got a bit of a passive-aggressive feel, Burroughs recalls his life with this odd family with fondness for the most part, yet there are whisps of resentment underneath. An amazing life story, I was interested in what would happen to him on every page
Date published: 2006-06-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Hilarious! What I loved about this book, that differs from all the other childhood tragedy books out there, is Mr Burroughs ability to find humour in his offbeat and, at times, tragic upbringing. His wit and graphic writing style makes for a colorful and laugh-out-loud, roller coaster of a read! Highly recommended!
Date published: 2006-06-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from a good read The whole time I was reading this book I kept wondering how anybody could come out of a childhood with some kind of sanity. Although sad and disturbing at times, I loved the lightheartedness of the storytelling and more than once I found myself smiling. A good read.
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved This Book! This is an incredible story that will leave you breathless. It is hard to imagine that he endured his upbringing. At times hysterical; at times poignant; always interesting and entertaining. I have read all of his books and this is by far his best and most compelling. You will not be able to put it down.
Date published: 2006-05-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Savoring Every Piece Savoring every piece-and I use that literally as in trying to save a broken down coffee table. This book shows you the horrors of his life, but yet, he is witty and uncanny in doing so. This is a fabulous book, similar in ways to DRY , yet between the two books, RUNNING WITH SCISSORS stands out above the crowd. Other Reads: NIGHTMARES ECHO,A CHILD CALLED IT and DRY
Date published: 2005-07-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic Work By Augusten Burroughs RUNNING WITH SCISSORS is candid and an honest reflection of a difficult childhood-teen-adult. The complications that come from such an odd upbringing, what leads us to do the things we do as adults. It ranks up there with other memoir style material like that of KATLYN STEWART and DAVID SEDARIS. Though, BURROUGHS tells his story with a bit more wit then the prior mentioned authors, you can truly see within the pages of these books the pain, trials, tribulations and healing that is felt in writing a tell all book
Date published: 2005-07-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from This is a very weird book I can't believe that any group of people are as bizarre as the ones who popluate this "memoir." At times funny and graphic this will either delight or shock the reader.
Date published: 2004-10-10

Editorial Reviews

"I just finished reading the most amazing book. Running with Scissors is hilarious, freaky-deaky, berserk, controlled, transcendent, touching, affectionate, vengeful, all-embracing....It makes a good run at blowing every other [memoir] out of the water." -Carolyn See, The Washington Post"Funny and rich with child's eye details of adults who have gone off the rails." -The New York Times Book Review"It is as funny as it is twisted." -GQ"A hilarious and horrifying memoir." -Los Angeles Times"Harrowing and hilarious. I haven't laughed this much since David Sedaris's last book." -Haven Kimmel, author of A Girl Named Zippy"Running with Scissors is a cut above...compelling...the book celebrates Burroughs' resilient, upbeat spirit, which helps him surmount one of the weirder childhoods on record." -USA Today"The anecdotes can be so flippant, and so insanely funny (quite literally), that the effect is that of a William Burroughs situation comedy." -The New York Times"Burroughs defies the 'woe is me' stigma of modern memoir with a raucous recounting of his loony teenage years." -Entertainment Weekly"I was reminded of Roald Dahl's Boy and A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius. Augusten Burroughs has produced a memoir that's funny and sharp but also humane, as charming as it is revealing." -Kurt Andersen, author of Turn of the Century"A memoir that is both horrifying and mordantly funny." -San Francisco Chronicle"Burroughs has memorialized his bizarre childhood showing off a dark wit that often rivals that 0of David Sedaris--while telling a true story that would make even Sedaris cringe." -New York Magazine"Burroughs tempers the pathos with sharp riotous humor... Edgier, but reminiscent of Dave Eggers' A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, this is a survival story readers won't forget." -Booklist