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Out With It: How Stuttering Helped Me Find My Voice Hardcover – April 16, 2013


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Out With It: How Stuttering Helped Me Find My Voice + Stuttering: Inspiring Stories and Professional Wisdom (Volume 1) + Mindfulness & Stuttering: Using Eastern Strategies to Speak with Greater Ease
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books; 1ST edition (April 16, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1451676581
  • ISBN-13: 978-1451676587
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.6 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #695,177 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“Preston's book pulses with wit and energy, and the realities of how difficult living with [stuttering] is painted vividly.... Preston is unflinching and funny; she manages to find a happy balance of education, memoir, and feel-good-factor that few books actually achieve, concluding that it is our 'imperfections that ultimately make us beautiful.' Never saccharine or pandering, Preston's book is a triumph of telling your story without fear or glossing over the harder to look at details.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))

“An inspiring memoir.... Readers expecting a fairy-tale ending when they finish the book can’t have been reading very closely, but Preston comes to a truce with stuttering, and her battles with it make for engaging reading.” (Kirkus Reviews)

"Out With It is both a compassionate, unflinching memoir and an anatomy of life with a stammer. Katherine Preston offers affirmation for the millions of us who live with a speech disfluency and practical insight for those who don't. I highly recommend this astute and engaging book." (David Mitchell, author of Cloud Atlas)

“Katherine Preston is an upbeat and inspiring example of how to deal with a problem that concerns so many and yet is acknowledged by so few. Out With It deserves the widest possible audience.” (Michael Palin, actor, author, and founder of the Michael Palin Centre for Stammering Children)

“Katherine Preston's memoir is an astute and personal exploration on the human experience.... A must-read.” (Emily Blunt, actress)

“A frank, encouraging, and fresh exploration of a problem that's more widespread than we think. Out With It is a welcome addition to the small body of literature on this fascinating and mysterious subject.” (Margaret Drabble, author of The Peppered Moth and A Pattern in the Carpet: A Personal History with Jigsaws)

Out With It is a highly personal, vivid, and affecting account of one woman's journey from disability to wholeness through self-acceptance. It is sure to engage anyone who has traveled down a kindred path.” (Benson Bobrick, author of The Caliph's Splendor and Knotted Tongues: Stuttering in History and the Quest for a Cure)

“Katherine Preston is an extraordinary new literary voice and a triumphant storyteller of her generation. How she got there is a captivating tale and we are all the richer for her experience and her arrival.” (Carl Bernstein, author of A Woman in Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton)

“I’ve spent decades helping others reach their peak level of physical fitness and realize that the strength within creates the picture of health on the outside. Though I may look like a tough guy, I’ve fought my own inner battle with stuttering for most of my life. In Out With It, Katherine Preston describes, in such great detail, what it’s like to not be able to express yourself clearly and without ridicule. With her memoir, she’s become a voice for anyone with speech issues. My only complaint is that she didn’t write it sooner.” (Jake Steinfeld, Chairman & CEO, Body by Jake; Founder, Major League Lacrosse; Chairman of the National Foundation for Governors’ Fitness Councils)

“A compelling bird’s eye view of a condition few people are exposed to—and even fewer have patience for. Out With It is an inspiring, emotional story about one woman’s struggle to be heard—with an intelligent and unique love story as an added delight.” (Liz Tuccillo, co-author of He's Just Not That Into You, author of How to Be Single, and member of the board of directors of Our Time, a theater company for kids who stutter)

“A refreshingly honest memoir.... Out With It is a unique book, and I thoroughly recommend it to anyone who stammers, knows someone who stammers, or simply wants to know more about this often misunderstood condition. It made me laugh out loud, gave me deep, positive revelations about the stammering experience, and simply made me appreciate the journey a little bit more.” (Speaking Out, quarterly publication of the British Stammering Association)

“An interesting journey, both across country and in life.” (New York Daily News)

About the Author

Katherine Preston is a writer, public speaker, and a regular contributor to Psychology Today. Raised in England, she currently lives in San Francisco. Find out more at KatherinePreston.com.

More About the Author

Katherine Preston is the author of Out With It: How Stuttering Helped Me Find My Voice (Simon and Schuster April 2013 in the US and July 2013 in the UK). At the age of twenty-four she left her home and career in London and moved to America to spend a year facing her greatest fear. Out With It recounts the journey that she went on to come to terms with her stutter. She is a writer, public speaker and her work has appeared in Salon, The Forward and The Telegraph. Raised in England, she currently lives in Brooklyn, NY.

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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It has also given me the most powerful thing imaginable....Hope.
Julie Bourke
I have stuttered all my life and I can related to Katherine Preston in all her stories in which she describes in her book !
Domenic Borrelli
Out With It will connect with anyone who stutters, but I would recommend this book to everyone.
Andrew Ortner

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Roisin on April 20, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I should disclose: The author is a friend of mine. I am a stutterer. I am in the book (though I had NO IDEA I would be).

In light of all of that, I am surprised by how deeply this book touched me. I thought I had heard and read it all. I haven't.

Katherine's voice is light, intelligent and honest -- I wanted to grab her hand and follow. Her nuanced insight on the pain and the gifts of stuttering roused something inside of me. I'm not sure how to explain but I will say this - her story makes me want to forgive myself, her, all of us. Every piece of writing, music and art dear to me holds that feeling, so I can say without reservation that both this book and the voice behind it are SPECIAL. I cannot wait to read more from her.

I don't think you need to be a person who stutters to access the life affirming message of Out With It (I gave it to my sister, and she is just flying through it). Especially love the chapter on her and Jeremy. Enjoy!!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Samantha on April 30, 2013
Format: Hardcover
This book took me on a ride. It took me to a dark place, back to when I too was a 7-year-old trying to figure out why it was so hard for me to say the things that once tumbled out of my mouth with breathless enthusiasm. It brought me to a hopeful place, remembering my close circle of friends who barricaded me as a teenager, protecting me from the harsh world of those who just didn't care to get it. And it reminded me of how much potential we all have - as stutterers, listeners, communicators, people. As a stutterer myself, and a mentor to teens and young adults who also stutter, this book was a beautiful testament to the painful journey we've taken and the ability to come out unscathed (even if our name does not). Katherine is my friend, but moreso she is a voice of clarity. Stuttering is vastly misunderstood but she is able to shed light on aspects of it I was never able to fully grasp myself. This is truly a book for anyone who has experienced pain or empathy. The world needed this.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Jeremy Cohen on April 16, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Out With It is vividly personal and easy to read. I found so much more than I was looking for. Katharine bravely shares her experiences of growing up with a stutter - an immediate differentiator at a time in ones life where normalcy is all we want.

Katherine is able to turn her shame about her speech on its head, and provides real inspiration for anyone that has ever felt confined or trapped by our own doing. This book taught me about myself, and about those I love. It is about more than stuttering - it is about connecting. I couldn't put it down, I absolutely loved it!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Jessica Stone on April 20, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I wish I had Katherine's book when I was growing up, battling my own stutter. She accurately captures the storm of it all: the obsessiveness with our speech that envelops us. The desperate desire to shake off this invisible, mischievous monster. The exhausting hyperawareness we develop as we monitor everything we say and every reaction we provoke. The yearning to just be... normal. And then all the good stuff: the enormous capacity for compassion we gain for ourselves and others, the bravery that makes us try again and again, the unlikely humor we see in things, the way we learn what it really means to be... human.

There's a chapter towards the end of the book titled "Role Models." But by then we know who the real heroine of this story is and why we should be hanging on her every word.

Out With It is not just for stutterers. It's for everyone.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By F. J. Stechel on May 17, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Book nicely describes a stutterer's transition from experiencing fear and shame to self-acceptance. Emphasis is on self-help but not every stutterer - including this one - will be sold on the idea that stuttering is in some self a "gift" rather than a burden.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Barry Yeoman on April 28, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Katherine and I come from different generations and cultures, but her story parallels my own with uncanny precision. She chronicles, with depth and candor, the redemptive path from shame to eloquence, and she bolsters her personal story with interviews with hundreds of others who stutter (myself included). I especially appreciate her conclusion: Ultimately, our strength derives from our ability to embrace our imperfections and be open about our vulnerabilities. Katherine's story will resonate with anyone who has felt like an outsider because of an intrinsic trait.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By E. Bukowsky HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 16, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Twenty-eight year old Katherine Preston has struggled with the pain of stuttering, "a messy and complicated condition," since childhood. When teachers called on her, she feared that her classmates would tease her, someone would impatiently finish her sentences, or she would be dismissed as being mentally impaired. In her memoir, "Out with It," Preston courageously and candidly writes about her experiences and those of fellow stutterers from all walks of life. She and millions of others cope with blocks, repetitions, and other impediments that prevent them from expressing themselves fluently. Using powerful and evocative figurative language, Preston conveys the terror and aching self-consciousness that gripped her when she was ten and a boy asked her for her name. She recalls, "My name has been broken in half. My tongue lies taut and heavy, the tip glued to the base of my mouth." All she could say was the letter "k," over and over again, followed by "ka ka ka." "My name is the one word that never escapes my mouth unscathed."

"Out with It" is an enlightening, poignant, and sensitive book in which Preston helps us understand the obstacles that stutterers face when they communicate with friends and family, attend school, speak with co-workers, or try to accomplish tasks as mundane as ordering a soy latte at Starbucks. Although speech therapists suggest a variety of techniques to ameliorate stutterers' dysfluency and anxiety, there is as yet no cure. Some children manage to overcome or outgrow their stuttering, reducing it "to a hazy memory tucked away in some dusty crevice." Others, like Preston, expect to continue stuttering as long as they live.
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