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May 16, 2010

16 Down, 36 To Go "Happy" (52 Books, 52 Weeks)

My wife is getting a doctorate in physical therapy, and always asking me to recommend books with medical themes that humanize patients' experiences with the medical establishment and their afflictions. In the past I have recommended David B.'s graphic novel, Epileptic, Sarah Manguso's memoir, The Two Kinds of Decay, and Brian Dilon's The Hypochondriacs, all books she enjoyed and found enlightening. This past week I recommended Alex Lemon's memoir, Happy, and she couldn't put it down.

Alex Lemon's memoir is a rollercoaster, a whirlwhind of action and emotion. A college athlete seemingly bent on self-destruction, he begins experiencing double vision and vertigo and is eventually diagnosed with a brain hemorrhage. This is more than just a medical story, Lemon candidly recounts his own tragic personal history as a child and vividly shares his life dealing with this life-threatening medical condition.

Lemon is a poet, and the poetic power of words is always evident in Happy, one of the most striking memoirs I have read in years.

My next book is Viva Vegan!: 200 Authentic and Fabulous Recipes for Latin Food Lovers, by Terry Hope Romero.

also at Largehearted Boy:

52 Books, 52 Weeks
Online "best of 2009" book lists
Online "best of 2008" book lists
Book Notes (authors create playlists for their book)
Note Books (musicians discuss literature)

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