Life in a Marital Institution
Twenty Years of Monogamy in One Terrifying Memoir
By James Braly
(St. Martin's Press, Hardcover, 9780312607289, 278pp.)
Publication Date: April 2, 2013
List Price: $24.99*
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LIFE IN A MARITAL INSTITUTION is a look inside the manic marriage of opposites, from the winning point of view of the husband, the "gaspingly funny" (Variety), "never less than excellent" (New York Times) writer of the hit Off-Broadway show of the same name.
The marriage memoir—from Elizabeth Gilbert's Committed to Isabel Gillies’s It Happens Every Day —has been a balm to beleaguered wives everywhere. But who speaks for the husbands--and tells you what you never get to hear from your girlfriends? In this sharp, funny, poignant glimpse into a very unusual marriage, sensitive, decent, shell-shocked James Braly earns the job. His marriage to a woman who is so bewitching--that at their very first meeting she corrects the handwriting he uses to write her prized name and number on a slip of paper—is by turns fascinating and casually shocking. Thus begins a romance that includes progressive adventures in extended breastfeeding, co-sleeping, even fine dining (dinner parties whose guests include a connoisseur of human placenta: "pan roasted...in cumin").
The scenes from Braly’s marriage are wrapped around the story that explains why someone chooses such a partnership to begin with: a colorful, kooky family that includes a fierce bomber pilot dad, a debutante heiress mom, and a delightfully druggy sister dying in a Houston hospice, and who’d rather be dead than married to James's wife. In other words, love is what love was--only darkly hilarious.
Braly’s one-man show of the same name is currently touring the country, produced by Meredith Vieira Productions, which is developing the show for television.