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Reviews for Double Helix


“In this gripping, gut-wrenching, knock-your-socks-off memoir, Diane and Ed Reed tell their shared, unsparing story of addiction and betrayal, forgiveness and redemption. Their two voices, point/counterpoint, are entangled and illuminating. Their happy ending, when it finally comes, is well-earned and thrilling. They show how it’s never too late to be what you might have been.”


— Elizabeth Fishel, author of Getting To 30: A Parent’s Guide to the 20-something Years


“A story of the universal human experience and a journey of two souls walking through the dark night as partners and sometimes utterly alone. It will be a relief to those of us who have been stifled (or worse) by shame and trauma."


 — Galen Ellis, Community Health Planning Consultant

 “An honest, thoughtful, and touching chronicle of two very different but totally intertwined lives. Always fascinating—and at times horrifying—Ed and Diane’s stories unfold in tandem, sometimes joyful, sometimes poignant, sometimes almost unbearably sad. They hold nothing back in this recounting, but eventually it becomes a story of triumph and fulfillment. A compelling and satisfying read, hard to put down.”

— Steve Allen, Addiction Psychologist

 “A tough and frank account with a compelling presentation of co-dependency and how it develops. There were times reading that I didn’t see how Ed possibly could turn it all around, and that made the story so harrowing and suspenseful.”


 — Heather Pegas, Essayist

 “In his late 70s Ed Reed emerged suddenly on the national scene as an extraordinary jazz singer whose performances revealed new emotional depths to familiar standards. Double Helix not only details his anguished but ultimately triumphant sojourn from self-sabotaging addict to uncommonly self-aware artist; it offers the braided tale of Diane Reed, a resilient force in the fight for women’s rights who navigated the treacherous path with Ed over five decades and two marriages. A brave, unsettling, and deeply human story.”


— Andrew Gilbert, Jazz Journalist, SF Chronicle

 “It reads like a great jazz gig: call and response, maybe not knowing the changes and improvising, blowin’ some clams, not knowing how the tune might end, but trusting the musicians to take you there. All that’s left after every falsehood has been peeled away is love and music—and two lives well examined."


 — Alisa Clancy, KCSM

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