Another Bullshit Night in Suck City

Nick Flynn

A bristling memoir about Flynn growing up in Scituate, MA, his mother struggling to keep it all together and his father acting as a heavy, yet absent, presence. Like both his parents, Flynn learns to cope with substances and he stays in Boston, where he knows his father is or tends to return, even though he desires no relationship or contact with him. He begins working at a homeless shelter almost randomly. Eventually his father is evicted and arrives at the shelter against his son’s wishes. He struggles to come to terms with his father, with his dreams of being a writer, of his Great American Novel, as he begins to be recognized for his poetry.

It’s possible this story doesn’t even have to work very hard to be good, the core of it already holds so much power, but Flynn brings it together in a smooth style, without romanticizing hardships, with a calm insight into a relationship and personality similarities between a father and son who barely know each other, as well as some light cast on his work with homeless men in general.