ALL BETTER NOW: A MEMOIR -- a captivating memoir of the author's childhood struggles as a result of a brain tumor, only discovered following a near-fatal car accident
All Better Now: A Memoir by Emily Wing Smith (2016, Dutton Books For Young Readers; 304 pages)
This is one of those books that you can’t put down until you read the last sentence. And not just the last sentence of the memoir itself, but the last sentence of the acknowledgments too. The author, Emily Wing Smith, starts the book with a note to the readers in which she admits that truth can be embarrassing, and that’s the reason why she decided to change names and identifying characteristics of certain people. Then, she starts the prologue with a radical sentence: “I ask myself: How am I living still?” Her memoir is an answer to that question through captivating chronicles of her struggles with both mental and physical disabilities, among them a grapefruit-size brain tumor at the base of her skull, and a car accident that ironically may have saved her life. Sharing with us details of her therapy, her sudden uncontrollable bursts of anger, and her unexplained episodes until discovering the reason for her dizziness and the fact that nothing in her ever felt quite right, Emily Wing Smith delivers a powerful message: writing, telling her stories, was the only way she could escape it all.
This book is both breathtaking and heartbreaking, and takes the reader on a journey from beauty to pain, and from humor to sadness. It is a fast-paced memoir, filled with anecdotes that swim in vulnerability and honesty. The prose is raw, and works extraordinary well when describing painful events, or simply asking questions aloud.
I’d recommend this book to mature young readers (it is located in our J-Biography section) who believe in staying true to themselves no matter what, and adult readers who can relate to feelings of isolation and just plain weirdness.
Find this title in our catalog: All Better Now
Recommended by: Maite