Right from the beginning of the book, where fetus Carol describes her low-down, philandering father and her spunky, no holds barred, pregnant mama duking it out at a local gas station I was hooked and ready for a wild ride. And what a ride it was! I was able to immerse myself completely in the lives of Carol, and her hardworking, struggling working-class Southern friends and family. I found myself reading long into the night while rooting for Carol to find herself some peace and happiness.
As a woman who has made some less than ideal choices in my own life, I could easily identify with some of the issues Carol faced over the decades. It takes guts to open your heart and expose your life so candidly for the entire world to see. Raised in a chaotic household, it seemed as though Ms. Piner was destined to continue living in chaos, particularly when it came to her intimate relationships – I truly got this and never once questioned her choices. Far be it for me to judge the decisions of anyone else. We all do the best we can with what we are handed.
Carol Piner’s spunkiness bordered on snarky, but not quite. She’s clearly a no-nonsense kinda gal. I would liked to have seen her come to her senses sooner with regards to some of the deadbeat men she seemed to attract, but again, I understood it. I found myself thinking, “I could definitely be friends with this woman!”
I’d like to see a re-edit and re-format done, as the typos and a few formatting issues were a tad jarring at times. However, I can truthfully say this did not get in the way of the true message of “Evidence of Insanity”. Carol’s writing is open, honest, touching, funny, warm and wonderful. Her heart wrenching descriptions of the losses she suffered over the years goes to show the depths of her feelings – there’s much more than a pint-sized dynamo here. I was brought to tears more than once. The ending is truly awe-inspiring and uplifting.
I would definitely recommend “Evidence of Insanity” for anyone who enjoys memoirs. It certainly proves what I’ve been saying for a very long time – EVERYONE HAS A STORY TO TELL. Carol Piner’s story is one that’s not to be missed!
5 of 5 Stars, Review by Susan Barton