CONFESSIONS OF A TOBACCO ADDICT by Ben Petmecky

CONFESSIONS OF A TOBACCO ADDICT

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Ben Petmecky doubling as Arthur Mathews in this presumably autobiographical account, is a teacher in a small town- who really wants to write; his wife died five years before- of cancer: and aware that he uncontrollable in the classroom- even frenzied-without a cigarette, he decides to kick the habit through hypnosis. Dr. Porter, whom he consults, combines this technique with therapy, and during the weeks to come followed here in some detail, attempts to establish his patient's motivation for smoking. His gradual total recall of the past, a dominating, emasculating mother, etc., alternates with his tapering off in the present fighting to stop stoping- and giving in, until finally the memories of his earliest experiences enable him to really forswear.... Petmecky-Mathews' return, not quite to the womb, but to the meaning phase responsible for his addiction, is not quite as much of a revelation to others s it was to him -- certainly those with any previous orientation in the psycho sexual origins of this compulsion-craving. But it has a certain curiosity cum human interest value even though the writing is much less of an achievement; it's pretty crude.

Pub Date: Sept. 7th, 1962
Publisher: Doubleday