Townie is about growing up in a rough neighborhood. Since his parents were divorced his mom raised him along with his three other siblings. Her income was very meager so they lived in drug infested area with shootings, rapes, murders. He said that he missed at least 70 days a school a year. His sister was raped and was involved with drugs. His other brother became suicidal.
Thankfully everyone survived and they are now a close family.
What I was amazed at was the zeal to live. So many people have gone through some rough times: abuse, neglect, near death experiences, drugs, alcohol, divorces, rape, kidnapping, and war. Yet somehow they survived. They found some inner strength to move ahead. Andre Dubus III for example became a writer. Elie Wiesel, the famous writer, speaker, and scholar survived Auschwitz. There are countless others who have survived horrific things yet they managed to move ahead.
All I can say is "wow."
The interview also reminded me about the human condition and how broken we all are.