What Looks Like Crazy on an Ordinary Day, by Pearl Cleage

What Looks like Crazy on an Ordinary DayFinished 10-23-11, rating 3.5/5, fiction, 244 pages, pub. 1997

I know I drink too much, but I’m trying to cut back.When I first got diagnosed, I stayed drunk for about three months until I realized it was going to be a lot harder to drink myself to death then it might be to wait it out and see what happens.  Some people live a long time with HIV.  Maybe I’ll be one of those, grinning like a maniac on the front of Parade magazine, talking about how I did it.

Chapter 1

Ava had been living life to the fullest in Atlanta and the good times came back to haunt her.  She discovers that she has contracted HIV.  Left with no business or love interest she heads home to Idlewild, Michigan, to visit her sister for a while before moving on to San Francisco.  Her sister, Joyce, leads a very full-life and Ava is brought into the her charitable work.  She is also reintroduced to an old acquaintance, Eddie, who has some scars of his own.

Ava is spunky and speaks her mind and that’s appealing in a main character.  As she tells her story she is not afraid to admit her shortcomings (she drinks too much, she slept with too many men) and I liked that about her.  I also really liked her sister who brought a real warmth to the book.  Her work with teen moms moved the story along nicely and provided a real nasty antagonist.  Eddie was an okay character, but he was a little too good.  He didn’t seem real.

I really liked that the main character was living with HIV, but the story touched very little on the details of the reality.  That was a double-edged sword for me.  It was nice that the story was about more than that, but it also seemed like Ava had her head buried in the sand.

There is a lot of frank sex talk, which is sometimes okay, but it was more vulgar than I like.  I’m sure that it wouldn’t bother everyone, but I found it so unnecessary to the story.

Overall, a good, quick read.

This was from my personal library. 

4 thoughts on “What Looks Like Crazy on an Ordinary Day, by Pearl Cleage

  1. Jenners says:

    I’ve heard this book title but didn’t realize what the book was about at all. From your review, it does sound like it might gloss over the realities of having AIDS, but maybe people aren’t suffering as much now that the drugs are better.

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