|Contortionist's Handbook, the (2002) [Novel]|
by Craig Clevenger
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(From the publisher):
The Contortionist's Handbook
is the story of John Dolan Vincent, a talented young forger with a proclivity for mathematics and drug addiction. A misguided attempt at self-medicating is severe migraines lands him in a mental hospital awaiting a psychiatric evaluation—not his first time being on the brink of involuntary commitment. He knows that to be examined twice is to ensure being institutionalized as a suicide risk. So, following each trip to the hospital, he draws upon his skills as a "contortionist"—an inventor of new identities—and makes a new "life" for himself.
This time, however, the stakes are even higher. John and his girlfriend Keara are in danger from underworld thugs unhappy with being cut off from a source of phony documents and his fictional identity is on the verge of falling apart. John must face the formidable psychiatrist eye to eye and bluff his way out of certain doom. In John Vincent's world, the truth won't set you free—it will lock you up or get you killed.
(from the publisher)
Original title: The Contortionist's Handbook
Genre: Fiction→ General Fiction→ Troubled Lives