San Francisco General Hospital was ground zero of the AIDS epidemic. Written in the early days of AIDS, As Real As It Gets follows doctors, nurses and patients confronted by a mysterious disease that caused blood to become a toxin. The book leads the reader into the labs, clinics and hospital rooms, putting a human face on the disease. 

“One of the finest works I’ve ever read on the AIDS epidemic. “– Randy Shilts, author of And the Band Played On.

“A compelling account of the epidemic...presented with pace, clarity, humanity and considerable power” – The Washington Post

Riveting...picks up where And the Band Played On left off. – Nancy Synderman, NBC News, chief medical correspondent.

“Pierces right to the heart of the AIDS epidemic. For those numbed by the relentless tragedy of AIDS, this book vividly, beautifully brings to life an entire world of passionate, idiosyncratic, vibrant human beings.” – Ann Swidler, co-author, Habits of the Heart

She was fifteen when she visited the therapist; still a teen when they had sex. She was twenty-five when she married him and forty-four when she killed him. Seduced by Madness is an American family saga and an examination of the anything-goes attitude of Dr. Felix Polk and other therapists who embraced est, recovered memory, satanic abuse and other practices in psychotherapy.

For fans of true crime, psychology, courtroom drama and truth-is-stranger-than fiction, this is a triumph. Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) 

(Seduced by Madness is) a riveting account of a marriage gone terribly wrong, a character study of one of the more unlikely murderers of our time and a meticulous narrative of a ludicrous and mesmerizing trial. – Jay McInerney, author, Bright Lights, Big City 

“An exceptional piece of literary journalism.” – Contra Costa Times

“Riveting reading…. a truly chilling study of evil.” –The Washington Times.

“ Nobody knows this case better, or tells it so well, as Carol Pogash.” – Keith Morrison, correspondent for Dateline NBC

“Veteran journalist Carol Pogash offers a complex, detailed, and nuanced exploration of the “perfect” Boomer family.” –Dennis McDougal, author of Angel of Darkness

“The story is utterly compelling, but it took a writer of Carol Pogash’s talents to make a book this good.” – Ayelet Waldman, author of Bad Mother and Love and Other Impossible Pursuits

A page turner...The reader is transported into the restless mind of a murderer. – San Francisco Chronicle

“Carol Pogash meticulously traces the labyrinthine tale’s roots….[Her] book adds insight to the complexity of the personalities and long struggles in the Polk family and the tragedy to which they led. It’s a good read and a worthy one.” – Chicago Sun–Times

“With the exception of And the Band Played On, there hasn’t been a book like this one published.“

– Steve Kroft, correspondent, 60 Minutes

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