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Diving into Glass - Caro Llewellyn

Diving into Glass

By: Caro Llewellyn

eBook | 5 March 2019

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Caro Llewellyn was living her dream life in her adopted home of New York, directing an international literary festival. Then one day, running in Central Park, she lost all sensation in her legs. Two days later she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

Caro was no stranger to tragedy. Her father Richard contracted polio at the age of twenty and spent the rest of his life in a wheelchair. Dignified, undaunted and ingenious, he was determined to make every day count, not least seducing his nurse while still confined to an iron lung, then marrying her.

But when Caro was herself blindsided by illness, cut loose from everything she depended on, she couldn't summon any of the grace and courage she'd witnessed growing up. She was furious, toxic, humiliated. Only by looking back at her father's extraordinary example was she able to rediscover her own grit and find a way forward, rebuilding her life shard by shard.

An emotionally brutal memoir of family, vulnerability and purpose, Diving into Glass is a searing, often funny portrait of the realities of disability and an intimate account of two lives filled with vigour and audacity.

'Caro Llewellyn's portrait of her father is a tour de force. It is entirely unpredictable and consistently exhilarating. I read it in one transfixed sitting.' Janet Malcolm

'Disturbing, compelling, portentous, obsessive, repetitious, persistent, prophetic, packed with shocks of recognition.' Annie Proulx

'Indefatigable and unsinkable, Llewellyn keeps her story on pace as if her very life, and her father's legacy, depended on it. Inspiring and uplifting.' Mary Norris, author of Between You & Me

'With Diving into Glass, Caro Llewellyn has landed herself alongside the great memoirists of our time. With Mary Karr's eye for detail and Patti Smith's lyrical grit, Caro Llewellyn tells her extraordinary story as if it were merely ordinary, this dazzling, tumultuous life of hers. Like Frank McCourt's Angela's Ashes and Jeannette Walls' The Glass Castle, Llewellyn deftly navigates some pretty heady material. The fact that she was assaulted by a one-legged man while selling communist newspapers in downtown Sydney and it barely ranks in her highlight reel is evidence enough that Llewellyn is that rare creature who has bravely lived a technicolor life out loud and then been able to describe it perfectly to those of us who only see in black-and-white. Courageous and elegant, brave, funny and heartbreaking, Diving into Glass is a riveting marvel of an autobiography that resonates long after its final pages have been turned.' Elizabeth Flock, New York Times bestselling author of Me & Emma and But Inside I'm Screaming

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