I am, I am, I am seventeen brushes with death
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- ISBN: 9780525520238 (electronic bk)
1 online resource
- Publisher: 2018.
|Summary, etc.:||On seventeen occasions, Maggie O'Farrell has stared death in the face—and lived to tell the tale. In this astonishing memoir, she shares the near-death experiences that have punctuated and defined her life: The childhood illness that left her bedridden for a year, which she was not expected to survive. A teenage yearning to escape that nearly ended in disaster. An encounter with a disturbed man on a remote path. And, most terrifying of all, an ongoing, daily struggle to protect her daughter from a condition that leaves her unimaginably vulnerable to life's myriad dangers. Here, O'Farrell stiches together these discrete encounters to tell the story of her entire life. In taut prose that vibrates with electricity and restrained emotion, she captures the perils running just beneath the surface, and illuminates the preciousness, beauty, and mysteries of life itself.|
Electronic reproduction. New York : Vintage, 2018. Requires OverDrive Read (file size: N/A KB) or Adobe Digital Editions (file size: 11707 KB) or Kobo app or compatible Kobo device (file size: N/A KB) or Amazon Kindle (file size: N/A KB).
- Booklist Reviews : Booklist Reviews 2018 January #1
*Starred Review* Irish-born, Edinburgh-based O'Farrell, the author of seven ensnaring novels, including This Must Be the Place (2016), recounts events that seem more imagined than real in this gripping, episodic memoir. In 17 essays that jump back and forth in time, each titled with the name of an endangered body part, O'Farrell recounts, with peerlessly matter-of-fact lucidity, 17 nearly fatal events. She begins with "Neck (1990)," in which, at 18, she is confronted by a dangerous man on a hiking path. In "Lungs (1988)," she leaps, in the dark, off a harbor wall into the sea and nearly drowns. It is here that she seeds our curiosity by noting that a childhood illness resulted in neurological damage that initially landed her in a wheelchair and that continues to undermine her movement and balance. Yet cautious she's never been. Her astounding "brushes with death" chronicle continues with a barely averted plane crash, other near-drownings and terrifying encounters with violent men, participation in a circus act with a blindfolded knife-thrower, and a nearly fatal C-section. O'Farrell finally tells the full, harrowing, strangely beautiful story of her battle with encephalitis, only to then reveal her daughter's severe immune disorder. O'Farrell's intrepidness and determination are awe-inspiring, her experiences overwhelming, and her writing impeccable. This is a memoiristic tour de force. Copyright 2018 Booklist Reviews.
Born in Northern Ireland in 1972, MAGGIE O'FARRELL grew up in Wales and Scotland and now lives in London. She has worked as a waitress, chambermaid, bike messenger, teacher, and arts administrator, as a journalist in Hong Kong and London, and as the deputy literary editor of The Independent on Sunday. Her debut novel, After You&;d Gone (2000), won a Betty Trask Award and was followed by My Lover&;s Lover (2002); The Distance Between Us (2004), winner of a Somerset Maugham Award; The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox (2006); The Hand That First Held Mine (2010); Costa Book Award winner Instructions for a Heatwave (2013); and, most recently, This Must Be the Place (2016). www.maggieofarrell.com
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