'Maybe it was fitting to get shitfaced at Alexander’s wake. ‘He would have wanted it,’ people said. And they were probably right, because he was only twenty-one. We drank with a sad urgency, turning the reason for our grief into its elixir.
IN 2009 Elspeth Muir’s youngest brother finished his last university exam and went out with some mates to get drunk. Later that night he wandered to the Story Bridge. 'He put his phone, wallet, T-shirt and thongs on the walkway, climbed over the railing, and jumped thirty metres into the Brisbane River below.
Three days passed before police divers pulled his body out of the water. When Alexander had drowned, his blood-alcohol reading was almost 0.3.
'Why do some of us drink so much, and what happens when we do? Fewer young Australians are drinking heavily, but the rates of alcohol abuse and associated problems —from blackouts to sexual assaults and one-punch killings—are undiminished.
'Intimate and beautifully told, urgent and confronting, Wasted mixes memoir with reportage to illuminate the sorrows, and the joys, of drinking.' (Publication summary)
'writing about her brother’s death was the hardest thing Brisbane author Elspeth Muir has ever done.'
'Her book Wasted, which is subtitled A story of alcohol, grief and a death in Brisbane, is as moving as it is heartbreaking and has been nominated for The Courier-Mail People’s Choice Queensland Book of the Year award. ...'