"Baloney Express should be read by students in therapy fields as well as by patients and their loved ones." - A.B. 29 April 2011

"I have to tell you how compelling I found Sandy Garnett's memoir. For a book without a real "dramatic plot structure," it nevertheless was impossible to put down. His artistic talents are as evident in his words as they are in his art; his phrasing and descriptions of people and places and feelings create profound visual images. I know that some family members may have been reluctant for him to share such private experiences, but I have to say I have only the greatest empathy and respect for his trials and the man he is today. Clearly, he loves and appreciates his parents and his brothers and the value of family and how close he came to wandering away from that gift." - V.F., College English Professor, 4 July 2011

Reviews of Baloney Express

"Baloney Express is one of the most powerful, brave and well written books of all that I have read." - 30 May 2011, P.F., Owner Consulting/Marketing Firm, Father, Grandfather

"Baloney Express seems to me to be absolutely free of the BS we all put out there to survive and make our ways in the world.  It is, of course, a book about letting go of that BS and finding something true to pursue, to give us higher purpose in our lives, for a change." - Robert Begiebing, award winning author of nine books, 23 May 2011

"I am most amazed at what seems to be a very real viewpoint of the naturally self-absorbed teenager becoming aware of the rest of the world and evolving on each page. I was a child and family therapist and worked in methadone clinics and rehabilitation centers for years.  I am reminded of the academic curiosity that is rarely satisfied in books of this nature that students read to prepare for their professional therapist careers.  Baloney Express should be read by students in therapy fields as well as by patients and their loved ones." - A.B. 29 April 2011

"I've been meaning to write about how great and really inspirational Baloney Express is.  Baloney was not only a pleasure to read as it is written very well, but Garnett's story is fascinating.  The author's "journey" so to speak is amazing, how he turned everything around in his life. over the course of one short summer.  Congratulations to the author on publishing his story and especially on what he does with his life as a professional artist.  I can't wait to find out more about his artistic endeavors.  I want to thank the author for sharing his story and for making it a delight to read." - P.W., artist and mother, 10 September 2011

"I blew through Baloney Express in less than two days though it looks like I’ve had it for years; complete with folded down corners on several pages. What an honest expression of the author and quite a journey he took in such a short amount of time. Many are in the same situation the author was in at the innocent age of 19, but few have the courage to admit it, do something about it and live it. We ought to all be in therapy.  I will definitely be purchasing another copy; I have a 17 year old nephew who is headed down the same path the author was on and unfortunately has no idea how quickly he can screw up his life before it even begins. I’m hoping the raw honesty Garnett expressed in Baloney Express will turn the light on for him." - J.M. 4 August, 2011

"I loved, loved, loved Baloney Express.  I want to thank the author for sharing." - M.G. 26 June 2011

"Baloney Express came into my hands at exactly the right time.  I am trying to find a therapeutic wilderness camp for my son this summer.  Baloney Express is a comfort, showing that change and healing are really possible.  I want to thank the author for writing his story and sharing it with me." - Anonymous Reader, 20 May 2011

"I can't thank the author enough for sharing so deeply, with all of us, his feelings and what he went through in Baloney Express. The family dynamics hit home in a big, bad way...as does the self medicating. The author was right about thinking this book will help many people.  Forever a fan and soon to be a collector of Sandy Garnett's work." - A.D. 18 May 2011

"LOVE LOVE LOVE Baloney Express.  This book is so well written, touching, funny... I really could not put it down." - L.L. 15 May 2011

"Baloney Express is an amazing story. The author did a whole lotta living those 4 months, and I thank him for sharing his experience.  My wife can't wait to read it now."  - C.C., New Jersey, 14 May 2011

"Baloney Express is a real life,  fly on the wall account of rehab and the growing pains of family.  Unlike other reads in this genre, there are no whiny justifications and party days one-upmanship here.  Enlightening and witty, Garnett's irreverent, candid, self-deprecating voice is so honest it begs the reader to take a look in the mirror.  BE is a memoir, but the human experience in all its ugliness and glory is universal and this guy nails it."  -  Miles Carroll, 2 May 2011

"Baloney Express is an amazing journal of a young man's recovery and return to the arms of a loving, deeply worried and scared family.  I wept at the end of the book and the end of the Closer Chapter.  The book is beautifully written and the growth of an angry young man from page one to the end is astounding."  - S.N. 29 April 2011

"I read Baloney Express in one sitting, I really could not put it down. I was very moved. What a window the author opened....I was struck by his honesty, vivid writing, his sense of humor....really, it is wonderful. And it is one of those books that makes the reader look inward while reading it: am I living with humility, do I have my priorities straight, am I cutting out the BS? I hope this book is available in book stores all over, because it should reach people (in recovery, or not, there is so much for people to relate to). - J.R. 26 April 2011

"I read Baloney Express on the bus from NYC to DC and was very moved.  I got  a tear or two in my eyes as I read the last page. It takes a lot of courage to open up the way Garnett does to tell this story.  He is lucky to have had such a life-forming experience.  It seems the author has an appreciation for the world that one can only develop by having gone through what he did.   Baloney Express would make a great indie film." - A.D. 19 April 2011

"I loved Baloney Express.  Every entry is captivating.  I did not want the book to end.  What an amazing read.  I bought five copies for people who will love Baloney Express as well.  I look forward to Garnett's next writing project." - I.W. March 2011

"Baloney Express is mesmerizing, touching, funny, and real. It kept me going.  I finished it in two days." - E.T 6 March 2011

"Garnett is a wonderful writer.  I can feel his frustration, his moments of uncertainty, his developing insight, and these moments are sprinkled with lines that make me laugh out loud.  This chemistry is very hard to capture in a book like Baloney Express but the author excels in this complex space and I want to read more."  - C.L. October 2010

“A timeless classic beach read with guts, humor and vision.  What a debut book from this professional painter and sculptor that will make a fine film." - Alan Abel, America’s Most Famous Hoaxer (alanabel.com)

“After reading Baloney Express I thought that we should all go to rehab to get over ourselves.”  - Kim Harris, Founding Member, Shippan Book Club

"Baloney Express is very strong, well-written, fast, fluid, funny and poignant without being self-conscious.  This is a wonderful book, a coming of age story that everyone should read.”  - Annie Edgerton, Broadway Actress

"Truly Awesome.  Every facet of the ex-stoner in Baloney Express shines brightly.  I practiced with my old band here last night.  The bass player checked it out and read a bit....he was loving it.  This morning my old friend, who is an ex-junkie, came over and he wants to read it.  I'm thinking Baloney Express may bring Oprah back!" - 21 May, 2011 K.R., Professional Photographer

“An honest coming of age story, unlike some famous recovery books that are fictional and therefore disrespectful to their readers.  I strongly recommend a slice of Baloney.”
- H.T., Anonymous Patient in Recovery

“I loved Baloney Express.  I read it in two days.  The author completely understands what it feels like to be in here.  I will read it again, a journal entry a day, as I go through my recovery.  I will refer to this book now and in the future.  Everyone at the clinic wants to read it.  We need more copies.”   - B.D., Anonymous Patient in Recovery

“You need to publish this story.  Scan the old first draft in, edit the document, make a book and get it out there.”  - Deborah Shea, Senior Independent Advisor for the first draft of Baloney from written journal, College Writing Professor, St. Lawrence University

“It is a real experience to read with the author as he grows intellectually and spiritually through the Baloney Express.  At times very funny, at times poignant, this strong and honest coming of age story will reach people.  An impressive debut book.” - J.M. Benston, Online Book Reviews

“Earnest and amusing.  A quick, insightful, enjoyable read.  A three train ride book.  Let me put it this way... that other whiny memoir I started long before I picked up this one last week sits in my trunk unread, where it will probably live all winter.” - C. Peter, Writer and Astute Cultural Critic

"Baloney Express has become a dear friend. I was surprised at how deeply I related to this story - how much I found it a helpful reminder and how it became a companion.  I have been down similar paths and not only laughed but cried too with BE.  While traveling along with Sandy during his rediscovery of himself and a new way of looking at, and being in, the world, I remembered what is important to me and why 'recovery' was on the table for me in the first place. If you have ever felt a struggle with addiction read this book. Even though it is someone else's story, it has a big heart that not only takes you in, but never let's you go.  It reminds you to remember your truth and your personal passion for yourself and your future. Thank you Sandy for sharing your journey. It will carry many when they need to be reminded that even in struggle and times of 'failure' there will come a time when you can stand up again, that  you really don't need anything but yourself to make it all exactly what you really want it to be.  Just keep getting back up and go, and if you need a hand while you're down there, have a bit of Baloney." - 27 May 2011 A.E., Professional Photographer

"I read 3/4 of Baloney Express on a sad rainy day.  It is not a quick read but I ripped through it.  The book is hard and tough.  This book should be delivered to every parent signing their teen into rehab.  I learned so much about the author, about what he went through and to some degree, I learned about me too.  I loved Baloney Express." - D.M., Professional Writer, 20 June 2011

"Baloney Express is a collection of journal entries from the author's college years.  Powerful stuff, it's chemical free time travel.  Baloney Express is a fantastic read." - T.O. 24 May 2011

"I just finished Baloney Express.  It made me cry at the end.  I love the author's family for being a good foundation for him.  It just made my heart ache... what a great read." - 23 May 2011, A.E., Photographer


Sandy Garnett’s debut book derives from the long lost 500 page handwritten journal he kept during his four month stint in a New England rehab and a halfway house in Mesa, Arizona, the summer after his freshman year at St. Lawrence University in upstate New York.

Baloney Express documents the coming of age story of a 19-year-old in trouble.  On the horizon of this desert walkabout appears a wise, weathered cowboy oilman, who helps Garnett to see clearly, live simply, straighten his life out and pursue his dream of making art for a living.

Ripe with ruthless self-discovery and observational wit as the journal writer grows deeply through this life changing experience, ‘Baloney’ reaches well beyond the pale of traditional recovery literature into the labyrinthian corridors of contemporary adolescence, whose archetypal mentors shine the best of their lives forward. 

The author’s passage from a self-destructive college freshman to a healthy son, brother and ambitious young artist underscores this uplifting story while exploring the resilience of a decent family, whose trials and tribulations are a testament to the rangy, stubborn optimism that echoes and carries the American spirit.


© 2021 Sandy Garnett contact - (917) 922-7213