How Thin the Veil: A Memoir of 45 Days in the Traverse City State Hospital - Jack Kerkhoff
By Jack Kerkhoff
Published by Mission Point
Picture a slightly decrepit, snow-covered state hospital. A depressed writer checks himself into the asylum and is placed in the ward for alcoholics and the mildly insane. Under the care of a wise and patient, chain-smoking doctor, our hero examines his suicidal motivations, while at the same time keeping a writer’s eye on the inmates and their almost universal malady of “woman trouble.” As the snow comes down and Christmas nears, “woman trouble” takes on new meaning when the author falls in love with beautiful, child-like Suzy from Ward Eleven.
This memoir, originally published in 1952, takes a hard-boiled look at mental health treatment before the collapse of the state-sponsored system. Bawdy, inappropriate, deeply romantic and rich in captivating characters, How Thin the Veil takes the love story to where it’s never been before.