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My Year Off: Rediscovering Life After a Stroke Paperback – 2 May 2008

14 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Picador; Reprints edition (2 May 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 033045711X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330457118
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.6 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 205,998 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

‘Few of us can write in perfect health with the wit, skill, honesty and compassion that McCrum manages following a stroke’ Professor Anthony Clare

‘I have never read anything quite like this, a moving and unsentimental account of an encounter with the Grim Reaper. I think it should be prescribed reading for all’ Beryl Bainbridge

‘With its lucid heartfelt prose, My Year Off gives voice to the millions of people who suffer strokes . . . More importantly, the book is a testament to the parallel trials and courage of the family members of stroke victims’ New York Times Book Review

‘Elevates the health-book genre to art. Here’s proof a book can delight as it heals’ Wall Street Journal

Book Description

An essential, compassionate book for all stroke victims and their families, with a new introduction from the author

With a new introduction from the author


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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Timothy J. Bazzett on 3 Feb. 2010
Format: Paperback
This book brought to mind Lee and Bob Woodruff's book, In an Instant, but there are, of course, differences. While Bob Woodruff was disabled by a roadside bomb in Iraq, Robert McCrum was laid low by a stroke at the age of forty-two, at a time when he and his wife Sarah had only been married a couple of months. McCrum characterizes his crippling stroke as a "biological car wreck." He tells in frank terms how devastating the stroke was, leaving most of his left side paralyzed and "frozen," and how hard it was to come back from it over the next year and more. But besides enumerating all the struggles and treatments involved in being rehabilitated, he also explores the way it forced him to rethink his life and way he viewed the world. The Woodruff book was often as much a love story as it was a story of treatment and therapy. The same is true with the McCrum story. One cannot help but feel an enormous admiration for McCrum in effecting his recovery from the stroke, but I was equally moved by the unstinting devotion and love showed by his still-new bride in her tireless efforts to fix her cruelly "broken" husband. After all, she hadn't signed on in the marriage to be a nurse and caregiver, but she didn't complain. She nursed, encouraged and - most of all - loved him. This is an inspirational story, and an extremely well-written one too. Both Bob Woodruff and Robert McCrum were extremely lucky in the unkind hands that fate dealt them. They had wives who loved them, and who proved it every day. I recommend this book, MY YEAR OFF, without reservations. It's a good one. - Tim Bazzett, author of LOVE, WAR & POLIO
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By T. J. Riley on 29 Jan. 2010
Format: Paperback
Robert McCrum was a writer of national standing before his stroke, (or 'brain attack' as he calls it) so this account of his experience suffering a major stroke at the age of 42 is especially well-written. He doesn't minimise all the difficulties, the frustration, resentment and fears, and the impact on his relationship with his wife of just a few months or with his two children born after the stroke. But his story is one of hope and love, profoundly moving and ultimately inspiring.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By JohnnyH on 31 Aug. 2010
Format: Paperback
A wonderful account by a man too young to have a stroke. Since my mother had a stroke a few years later it has been a great help to understand the frustratingly long recovery, but my strongest memory of this story of recovery is Robert's wife for whom it was almost harder to cope with, yet came through as central in his recovery , and is just amazing. That is how it was for me and my brother and sister in law in getting my Mum better and home again. If anyone needs an uplifting experience against adversity read this book, and then you will be fine.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By M. Dowman on 22 Mar. 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I brought this book a few months ago after having a stroke last year, when I was reading it I can remember thinking so many of the same things as Robert McCrum had written in his diary, being pushed around in a wheelchair and the sense of helplessness, and when asking when will things improve being told how long is a piece of string and use it or lose it (it must be a physiotherapist catch phases) Things do improve and life does change and I would highly recommend buying this book, my husband who also read this book found it helped him understand things and for me regarding his feeling of having to cope with someone who has had a stoke
P.S Apologies for any spelling mistakes, I have had to read this about 5 times to check it, but this is sometimes all part of having a stroke.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By kate on 14 Sept. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Informative, insightful and essential reading for anyone who's own life or has family that has been effected by stroke. I gave me understanding of what my uncle who recently had a stroke was going through and what he might be expecting to go through, as well as helpful information about the brain and greatly needed hope for a positive outcome.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Isabelle on 19 Sept. 2011
Format: Paperback
Aged 42 years, newly married and at the prime of his career as editor-in-chief at Faber and Faber publishers, Robert McCrum experienced a massive stroke. With eloquence, skill and a remarkable knowledge of his subject he shares with his readers his catastohic stroke edperience. We learn of his time of suffering, of the fears, uncertainty and isolation. He describes how he struggled to make sense of his experience and how gradually, helped by the love and support of his new wife, Sarah, he reached a time of acceptance and self-discovery. Even more poignant are the extracts from Sarah's diary and her own journey through this emotional upheaval.
An important read and guide for stroke sufferers and for those who love and care for them.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Heather B on 3 May 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My husband had a stroke earlier this year. We've both read this book and each took many different but equally useful things from it. Beautifully written - can't praise it enough
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