I Am Not Myself These Days: A Memoir

Josh Kilmer-Purcell, Author
Josh Kilmer-Purcell, Author . Harper Perennial $13.95 (308p) ISBN 978-0-06-081732-9
Reviewed on: 12/05/2005
Release date: 02/01/2006
Ebook - 336 pages - 978-0-06-173766-4
Open Ebook - 336 pages - 978-0-06-173760-2
Ebook - 336 pages - 978-0-06-186084-3
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Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 336 pages - 978-0-06-173763-3
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-0-552-15466-6
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Hardcover - 978-0-593-05627-1
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In the go-go '90s, Kilmer-Purcell spent his days as an advertising grunt and his nights hopping around Manhattan's gay clubs as "Aquadisiac," over seven feet tall in a wig and heels with goldfish swimming in transparent bubbles covering "her" breasts. (Not that Kilmer-Purcell wanted to actually become a woman; as he explains to his mother, a drag queen is "a celebrity trapped in a normal person's body.") He meets a cute guy, and soon he's moved into Jack's penthouse apartment—which he pays for by working as a male escort. Kilmer-Purcell gives much of his story a Sex and the City -ish spin, finding comedy in the contrast between his and Jack's sweet, cuddly relationship and the sexual demimonde of drag queens, hookers and masochists they count among their friends. But there's always a dark undercurrent: before the two get serious, Kilmer-Purcell's alcohol-impaired judgment frequently puts him in dangerous situations, but things get worse when Jack starts smoking crack during sex parties and becomes addicted. The exact, unpitying detail with which Kilmer-Purcell depicts his downward spiral makes it impossible to look away, especially since it's not until the final scenes that he allows himself to succumb to sentimentality. (Feb.)

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