Lithium Jesus: A Memoir of Mania - Charles Monroe-Kane - 09/23/2016 - 7:00pm

Lithium Jesus: A Memoir of Mania

Community Room

Charles Monroe-Kane is a natural raconteur, and boy, does he have stories to tell. Born into an eccentric Ohio clan of modern hunter-gatherers, he grew up hearing voices in his head. Over a dizzying two decades, he was many things—teenage faith healer, world traveler, smuggler, liberation theologian, ladder-maker, squatter, halibut hanger, grifter, environmental warrior, and circus manager—all the while wrestling with schizophrenia and self-medication.
From Baby Doc’s Haiti to the Czech Velvet Revolution, and from sex, drugs, and a stabbing to public humiliation by the leader of the free world, Monroe-Kane burns through his twenties and several bridges of youthful idealism before finally saying: enough. In a memoir that blends engaging charm with unflinching frankness, Monroe-Kane gives his testimony of mental illness, drug abuse, faith, and love. By the end of Lithium Jesus there may be a voice in your head, too, saying “Do more, be more, live more. And fear less.”

By the time you get to my age, you’ve experienced fear.
A man with a gun. An acid trip gone wrong. A serious car accident.
Holding a loved one’s hand in the ICU.
But there is something singular about the fear that comes from hearing voices.
Voices no one can hear but you.

—excerpt from Lithium Jesus, © The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System. All rights reserved.

Charles Monroe-Kane

Charles Monroe-Kane

Charles Monroe-Kane has won a Peabody Award for his work as a senior producer and interviewer for the program To the Best of Our Knowledge, broadcast on 220 public radio stations. He has reported for National Public Radio’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered.

Recent Book
Lithium Jesus: A Memoir of Mania