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Biographies

5 Books | by Jamie Page

The Night the Lights Went Out

The Night the Lights Went Out

Books

A fascinating, darkly funny comeback story of learning to live with a broken mind after a near-fatal traumatic brain injury—from the acclaimed author of The Hike“Drew Magary has produced a remarkable account of his journey, one that is filled with terror, tenderness, beauty, and grace.”—David Grann, bestselling author of Killers of the Flower Moon Drew Magary, fan-favorite Defector and former Deadspin columnist, is known for his acerbic takes and his surprisingly nuanced chronicling of his own life. But in The Night the Lights Went Out, he finds himself far out of his depths. On the night of the 2018 Deadspin Awards, he suffered a mysterious fall that caused him to smash his head so hard on a cement floor that he cracked his skull in three places and suffered a catastrophic brain hemorrhage. For two weeks, he remained in a coma. The world was gone to him, and him to it. In his long recovery from his injury, including understanding what his family and friends went through as he lay there dying, coming to terms with his now permanent disabilities, and trying to find some lesson in this cosmic accident, he leaned on the one sure thing that he knows and that didn't leave him—his writing.Drew takes a deep dive into what it meant to be a bystander to his own death and figuring out who this new Drew is: a Drew that doesn't walk as well, doesn't taste or smell or see or hear as well, and a Drew that is often failing as a husband and a father as he bounces between grumpiness, irritability, and existential fury. But what's a good comeback story without heartbreak? Eager to get back what he lost, Drew experiences an awakening of a whole other kind in this incredibly funny, medically illuminating, and heartfelt memoir.

A Million Little Pieces

A Million Little Pieces

Books

NATIONAL BESTSELLER • A gripping memoir about the nature of addiction and the meaning of recovery from a bold and talented literary voice. “Anyone who has ever felt broken and wished for a better life will find inspiration in Frey’s story.” —People “A great story.... You can't help but cheer his victory.” —Los Angeles Times Book Review By the time he entered a drug and alcohol treatment facility, James Frey had taken his addictions to near-deadly extremes. He had so thoroughly ravaged his body that the facility’s doctors were shocked he was still alive. The ensuing torments of detoxification and withdrawal, and the never-ending urge to use chemicals, are captured with a vitality and directness that recalls the seminal eye-opening power of William Burroughs’s Junky. But A Million Little Pieces refuses to fit any mold of drug literature. Inside the clinic, James is surrounded by patients as troubled as he is—including a judge, a mobster, a one-time world-champion boxer, and a fragile former prostitute to whom he is not allowed to speak—but their friendship and advice strikes James as stronger and truer than the clinic’s droning dogma of How to Recover. James refuses to consider himself a victim of anything but his own bad decisions, and insists on accepting sole accountability for the person he has been and the person he may become—which runs directly counter to his counselors' recipes for recovery. James has to fight to find his own way to confront the consequences of the life he has lived so far, and to determine what future, if any, he holds. It is this fight, told with the charismatic energy and power of One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest, that is at the heart of A Million Little Pieces: the fight between one young man’s will and the ever-tempting chemical trip to oblivion, the fight to survive on his own terms, for reasons close to his own heart. "

An Unquiet Mind

An Unquiet Mind

Books

NATIONAL BESTSELLER • A deeply powerful memoir about bipolar illness that has both transformed and saved lives—with a new preface by the author. Dr. Jamison is one of the foremost authorities on manic-depressive (bipolar) illness; she has also experienced it firsthand. For even while she was pursuing her career in academic medicine, Jamison found herself succumbing to the same exhilarating highs and catastrophic depressions that afflicted many of her patients, as her disorder launched her into ruinous spending sprees, episodes of violence, and an attempted suicide.Here Jamison examines bipolar illness from the dual perspectives of the healer and the healed, revealing both its terrors and the cruel allure that at times prompted her to resist taking medication.

Girl, Interrupted

Girl, Interrupted

Books

NATIONAL BESTSELLER • In 1967, after a session with a psychiatrist she'd never seen before, eighteen-year-old Susanna Kaysen was put in a taxi and sent to McLean Hospital. Her memoir of the next two years is a "poignant, honest ... triumphantly funny ... and heartbreaking story" (The New York Times Book Review).The ward for teenage girls in the McLean psychiatric hospital was as renowned for its famous clientele—Sylvia Plath, Robert Lowell, James Taylor, and Ray Charles—as for its progressive methods of treating those who could afford its sanctuary. Kaysen's memoir encompasses horror and razor-edged perception while providing vivid portraits of her fellow patients and their keepers. It is a brilliant evocation of a "parallel universe" set within the kaleidoscopically shifting landscape of the late sixties. Girl, Interrupted is a clear-sighted, unflinching document that gives lasting and specific dimension to our definitions of sane and insane, mental illness and recovery.

Prozac Nation

Prozac Nation

Books

Elizabeth Wurtzel's New York Times best-selling memoir, with a new afterword "Sparkling, luminescent prose . . . A powerful portrait of one girl's journey through the purgatory of depression and back." —New York Times "A book that became a cultural touchstone." —New Yorker Elizabeth Wurtzel writes with her finger on the faint pulse of an overdiagnosed generation whose ruling icons are Kurt Cobain, Xanax, and pierced tongues. Her famous memoir of her bouts with depression and skirmishes with drugs, Prozac Nation is a witty and sharp account of the psychopharmacology of an era for readers of Girl, Interrupted and Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar.

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