The Adderall Diaries

The Adderall Diaries
Stephen Elliott

Named a "Best Book of 2009" by Kirkus Reviews, Time Out New York, Largehearted Boy, and the Kansas City Star.

Named "Notable Bay Area Book of 2009" by the San Francisco Chronicle.

“Stephen Elliott’s superb, sprawling meta-memoir might be just what the genre needs to salvage it from the legacy of James Frey.”—Time Out New York, five of five stars

About the Book

“Elliott may be writing under the influence, but it's the influence of genius.”—Vanity Fair
In this groundbreaking memoir, Stephen Elliott pursues parallel investigations: a gripping account of a notorious San Francisco murder trial, and an electric exploration of the self. Destined to be a classic, The Adderall Diaries was described by the Washington Post as “a serious literary work designed to make you see the world as you’ve never quite seen it before.”

Additional Reviews

“Elliott’s candor yields some sad, lovely writing about his father.”—The New York Times Book Review

“Nakedly manipulative and all but impossible to resist. . . . The first sentence] sucked me in twice, because the moment I revisited The Adderall Diaries (intending only to select quotes for this review) I immediately started reading the book again.”—The Boston Globe

The Adderall Diaries should be a lurid work. . . . Yet this is no potboiler, but a serious literary work designed to make you see the world as you’ve never quite seen it before. The intensity of Elliott’s often beautiful prose evokes the effects of Adderall, the attention deficit medication. Yet the book shows a concern for order: Each chapter begins with a summary of what’s to follow, reminiscent of the headings in Victorian novels, and there are even several footnotes. Nonetheless, beneath these devices throbs an all-pervasive sense of the elusiveness of truth. Memories deceive, and almost everyone in this book—including the author—is a fantasist.”—The Washington Post

“Elliott ruthlessly flays the truth past the point of tears, to heights of consciousness achievable only through the masochistic act of writing. Elliott may be writing under the influence, but it’s the influence of genius.”—Vanity Fair

“A refined, beautiful work of art. . . deserves a place on the shelf next to such classics of uninhibited American introspection as On the Road and A Fan’s Notes.”—Kirkus Reviews, starred review