Thursday, November 09, 2006

Strange Piece of Paradise: A Return to the American West to Investigate my Attempted Murder--and Solve the Mystery of Myself by Terri Jentz.
Terri Jentz and her Yale roommate began a cross-country bike trip in 1977. While camping in an Oregon state park a stranger ran over their tent and brutally attacted them with an axe. Jentz was able to drag herself to the nearby road and flag down a passing truck, saving herself and her roommate. Jentz suffered a multiple injuries including a gashed arm and collapsed lung while her friends skull was crushed and she was blinded and suffered amnesia of the attack.
In 1992 Terri Jentz returns to the scene of the attack to investigate the facts of the case and to answer some nagging questions of her own psyche. This is an account of a true crime that is not written in the true crime genre. It questions why our society is so fascinated with blood and gore. Why we crave the "dangerous stranger". It deals with the larger issues of justice. And it offers no easy answers. As Jentz deals (or as those around her don't deal) with her psychic and psychological wounds the reader questions how individuals and society can deal with their wounds. This is a contemplative book for a contemplative reader. ~Damara

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