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Peter, a habitual peep show visitor, dreads dirt, fears contamination, and lives each day certain he will go mad. He adheres strictly to many self-imposed rituals, hoping to contain the demons in his head. One day, he meets John, a chronically ill, mental patient. They form an odd, but deep bond, affecting each others' lives. In the end, John dies triggering Peter's long awaited breakdown, which he learns is no big deal.

A literary novel, Peter is both serious and humorous. Odd as they may be, the types most people turn away from, Peter and John share with the rest of us basic needs to live without fear and be in charge of our destinies. In the book, I take controversial positions on the mentally ill, psychiatric treatment, sex and pornography, and raise many pressing questions, i.e.: Are neglected and abused children better off protected or left alone? Is smoking really bad? Does fellatio violate Jewish dietary laws?

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ISBN-10:  0967370116
ISBN-13:  978-0967370118
Author:  Ken Goldberg
Publisher:  MacAdam/Cage
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review by . April 21, 2002
Peter Branstill is in his early 40s and works as an accountant. He has several suits, all of the same color and style, that he alternates wearing to work. At work, he is the sort of person who does only the work expected of him, doesn't socialize with his co-workers, and eats his lunch (the same thing every day) on the same park bench, being sure to sit on a different part of the bench each day. If, for instance, there is a spot of dirt on the bench, Peter uses his own Graduated Dirt Rating Scale …
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