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Book details
  • Genre:BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY
  • SubGenre:Entertainment & Performing Arts
  • Language:English
  • Pages:360
  • Format:Paperback
  • Paperback ISBN:9781098382209

Double Helix

A Memoir of Addiction, Recovery, and Jazz in Two Voices

by Ed Reed and Diane Reed

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Overview
An intensely evocative and unsentimental story told in alternating narrative voices that follows the turbulent, decades-long journey of two people from different worlds whose lives, continually spiraling around each other like a double helix, are really two intertwined stories. Double Helix traces Ed's years of addiction, incarceration, treatment programs, and homelessness, along with Diane's struggle to balance her instinct to support and help Ed with her inability to hold him accountable, learning that loving an addict can be just as harrowing as being one. Double Helix conveys a compelling message—not only is change possible, but it is never too late to realize your dreams.
Description

In 1968, Ed was a 39-year-old African-American parolee, heroin addict, and sometimes jazz singer from Watts, California. Diane was a naïve 24-year old Jewish girl from the Bronx. People said they had no business being together, and their many troubled years of marriage, divorce, reconciliation, more separation and ultimate bottoming out seemed to prove them right—almost. Double Helix is an intensely evocative and unsentimental story told in alternating narrative voices that follows the turbulent, decades-long journey of two people from different worlds whose lives, continually spiraling around each other like a double helix, are really two intertwined stories. Double Helix traces Ed's 40 tumultuous years of drug addiction, four stints in prison, near death overdoses, treatment programs and mental hospitals, relapses, and homelessness. It also describes how Diane's desire to help a loved one crossed a boundary from healthy support to detrimental enabling, or codependency, that prevented her from holding him accountable, letting go, and living her own life. Each eventually found a path to recovery, bringing new challenges and Ed's dazzling rise as a nationally renowned jazz singer. Double Helix conveys a compelling message—not only is change possible, but it is never too late to realize your dreams.

About the author

Ed Reed was a heroin and cocaine addict for 40 years. Since beginning his recovery in 1986, Ed has worked with addicts/alcoholics, families, and programs as a health educator, lecturer, program developer, trainer and consultant inspiring others to change their lives through recovery. In 2007, Ed began a late-life career as a jazz singer, performer, and recording artist. He has released four critically acclaimed CDs, performed on world-class stages nationally and internationally, and has been extensively interviewed by print journalists and on jazz radio stations. In 2014, at age 85, Ed was voted #1 Rising Star in the Male Vocalist category by DownBeat critics.

Diane Reed left Boston University after her junior year and moved to California where she worked as a secretary and administrative assistant, working her way up to director of admissions at a law school and executive officer at a state licensing board. She earned her undergraduate degree in women’s studies in 1983, and a master’s degree in public health from the University of California at Berkeley in 1986, then embarked on a career as a consultant in a wide range of public health contexts. Over the last 15 years, Diane has managed all aspects of Ed’s music career, from the recording studio to the road.

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