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Eleven Seconds: A Story of Tragedy, Courage & Triumph Hardcover – Bargain Price, January 1, 1998


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--This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Warner Books, Inc. (January 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446521884
  • ASIN: B000IAZOYY
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #869,052 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Within the 11 seconds that inspired this memoir, Travis Roy realized his dream, then smashed into his nightmare. On an October night in 1995, Roy, a talented young hockey player, skated onto the ice for his varsity debut with Boston University. Eleven fateful seconds later, he was paralyzed from the neck down. Aided by the sure touch of Sports Illustrated hockey writer E.M. Swift, Roy's moving account of his accident and his rehabilitation--confined to a wheelchair, he's gotten some use of his right arm back--avoids the maudlin. Instead, Eleven Seconds is filled with grit, hope, humor, and a thoughtful young man's introspection on the meaning of sports and the adjustments that follow when the ability to play them is taken away. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

In October 1995, ready to play his first game as a member of the Boston University hockey team, Travis Roy looked forward to the biggest day of his life. It was big but for all the wrong reasons. Eleven seconds into the game, he cracked his fourth vertebra and was paralyzed from the neck down. With coauthor Swift, Roy tells the inspirational story of his life after the accident. He still can't walk but has regained some mobility in his right arm and has come to realize that his life is worth living. As he describes the stages of his rehabilitation, the agonizing slowness of the process emerges vividly. So does his sense of humor; he recalls, for example, the time he and his fellow patients at Atlanta's Shepherd Center giddily stole some potato chips, only to realize that none of them possessed the dexterity to eat their booty. This is an informative, clear-eyed examination of what it takes to fight back from personal tragedy. Wes Lukowsky --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

It's an uplifting, insightful, and hopeful addition to this inspirational book.
Goalie Glenn
Truly a remarkable person and with the strength to share his life so that others can see a glimpse of a wonderful heart and true spirit .
Jill Matsuhiro
Its a heart felt story of a kid who is a great hockey player and dreams of playing for the University of Boston.
Victor Ignatiev

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Martina on September 12, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have read many stories of "inspiring" people with spinal cord injuries, but never one as honest and emotionally open as this one. Roy shares not only the medical details of his injury, but his deepest feelings about what happened to him; and how he continues to deal with it on a day to day basis.

Instead of just giving uplifting blather about having a relentlessly positive attitude, he admits to bouts of self-pity; he talks about how other "well meaning" but patronizing people sometimes make him feel. It gave me a lot of insight into the difficult life of a quadriplegic, and definitely made me want to reach out more when I see someone in a wheelchair, and not to treat them as if they are invisible, which is often what happens in our society.

I had read another book called [I think], "Miracles Happen," by Brooke Ellison, who was rendered a ventilator dependent quadriplegic at age 11, and went on to graduate from Harvard. While I found Ellison very inspiring, her sugar-coated, surface description of her life and emotions somehow left me cold. In contrast to that, Travis Roy lays it all out there: everything he was and is thinking and feeling, whether or not those thoughts and feelings were "admirable."

He even talks about how awkward it is to be an "inspring" celebrity just by virtue of breaking his neck; and how he'd trade places any time with a normally abled anonymous person.

This is a fast read, and I would highly recommend it.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Robert Dorroh on October 22, 2000
Format: Hardcover
The emotion of Travis Roy's account of his struggle with paralysis does not slip into undue sentimentality. For instance, he says "Recovery from spinal-cord injury has nothing to do with how hard a patient, or how dedicated he or she is to walking again. Everyone who's ever been paralyzed will do anything to walk again. But for most of us, we may as well be trying to fly."
I'm a paraplegic so I know the feeling.
He tells about the pain of returning to college as a quadriplegic: "That was the hardest thing about returning to college: finding myself unable to interact with the other students because of my disability."
He learned to take the good with the bad: "Because for my parents to understand the situation, for us to really come together as a family, I need to tell them what's going on inside my head. Good and bad."
Roy was helped by the collaboration of Sports Illustrated hockey writer E.M.Swift to write a moving and uplifting story.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Measi on April 21, 2006
Format: Hardcover
On Oct. 20, 1995, two of my friends and I gleefully took our seats in Walter Brown arena. We'd saved up the money to purchase season tickets (huge money for undergraduates), and couldn't wait to see the triple crown banner be raised. The beginning of the night was all of the heartpounding celebration it could be.

And then only a short time later, that all changed--That night of joy became one of profound sadness as we watched a (then) unknown freshman player fall to the ice, motionless. It was the first and only time I've personally witnessed someone injured so severely.

Since that night, I've kept up from time to time to see what Travis is doing, how he's doing, and am constantly amazed at how he's fighting. He is an inspiration, and his book should be on anyone's reading list.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Alex on June 5, 2002
Format: Hardcover
The Travis Roy biography, Eleven Seconds, is a great book for hockey lovers, players, fans, or anybody who likes to read about triumph in the face of tragedy. The book starts out just like a biography of a superstar, like Steve Yzerman or Gordie Howe's begin. Travis' dad runs a skating skills camp, so Travis is advanced compared to the other skaters his age. Through high school he is one of the best players on the team. He transfers to prep school with a great hockey team. He shows off his skills and earns a spot on the BU hockey team, but eleven seconds into his first shift of division one hockey he goes headfirst into the boards and becomes a quadriplegic. For the first few months he can't talk due to hoses and cords running in his mouth. All his dreams of playing hockey in the NHL are over. What will his life be like? Who will take care of him? How will he live from now on?
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Leeanne Hubbard on January 23, 2001
Format: Hardcover
I went to Boston University with Travis and seeing him every day uplifted me because he was so upbeat about life. This books chronicles what none of us ever wish to go through. Travis is a wonderful person who I have come to greatly admire. He has become an idol to me in the fact that I was in a wheelchair for a while after a brain surgery and he was my inspiration. I kept his book by my bedside and said to myself daily "If Travis can do it, so can I." This book is inspiring and not drawn out. If you are remotely interested in sports, hockey, or this story itself, I reccommend you read it. I have a signed copy from Travis himself and have read it numerous times. It's hard to put down once you begin to read it!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 20, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Eleven Seconds is a remarkable book that shows the strength one needs to deal with a life changing blow in such a short time. While you have changed on the outside, you are still the same person on the inside. Having to deal with the physical changes is a feat within itself, but to deal with the emotions that accompany getting back into your daily life, that is the mountain of recovery. Travis deals with his accident in a matter of fact way in Eleven Seconds, and shows his readers what it was really like to go back into the world after his accident. I too am a quad, though a lower level, which means I can move my arms more than Travis and I can propel a manual chair, but I have been through the same emotions that Travis has been through. This book is an excellent resource for anyone wanting to understand to the best of their ability, how life truly changes after an accident leaves you with quadriplegia or paraplegia.
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