Dead Star Twilight: A Memoir
by Chez Pazienza
DXM Media & Dues Ex Malcontent, LLC

"Make no mistake, the most excruciating human feeling is and always has been helplessness."

This is the gut-wrenching memoir of a newscaster and recovering heroin addict on the scene in New York City following the 9/11 attacks. The author was assigned by MSNBC to broadcast from the location where people congregated looking for loved ones. Being around all that misery, he vowed never to do drugs again. Flashbacks alternating with current scenes tell the story. The author recalls warnings he missed that his 8-month marriage to a woman he deeply loved had gone sour. He drowned those fears in a $200 a day heroin addiction until his wife discovered the subterfuge. His parents helped move him into rehab. There he was befriended by a biker inmate who warned, “With a habit like yours―you **** up again, you’re going to be dead.” September 2001 became a lifeline for the author to pull himself out of the pit.

Gutsy, candid writing has the reader rooting for success. The book covers two years (November 2000 to August 2001; post 9/11 to 2002). The book’s frequent flashbacks, which worked as blog installments, can be confusing in print. During self-discovery, Pazienza wrote that he was “so angry right now – at the situation, myself, everything.” For the first time since childhood, in December 2001 the author attended a Catholic church’s midnight mass. The comfort recalled a time before he learned to question, doubt, rationalize, and fear. Later, he imagined how it might feel to stand and tell other addicts the truth about himself―something he could not do.

Pazienza admitted that when he started writing, his main motivation was revenge. Encouragement from a network manager led him to believe his story needed to be written. How wise that manager was since within a decade this brilliant writer would lose his fight with heroin.

RECOMMENDED by the US Review

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