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The Train in the Night: A Story of Music and Loss Hardcover – September 10, 2013

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Music journalist and first-time author Coleman's memoir of his sudden hearing loss in one ear, and his attempts to deal with a future in which the sound of music—the thing he loves most—has been irrevocably changed, is a fantastic, sad, funny, and, finally, optimistic view of his quest to get the music back—or at least to reconnect with it. One day while having tea with his wife, Coleman hears a soft pffff in his ear, like the sound of a kitten dropping on to a pillow—a sound that evolves after a few days into a wild humming that resounds in his head like the inside of an old fridge hooked up to a half-blown amplifier and affects his ability to listen to his music. He spends three years adapting to his new condition during which time he seeks help from Oliver Sachs, among others. He also considers the ways his life has revolved around music and sound, and these meditations take up the bulk of his memoir. Coleman is remarkably adept at describing the moments of hopeless disorientation he experienced: The reactive tinnitus took me close to the threshold of actual physical pain. He also provides hilarious and astute observations views of many of his albums, such as the Rolling Stones' Goat's Head Soup, which Coleman perfectly describes as sounding exactly how a record made on a Caribbean island by a bunch of knackered tax exiles with unlimited access to drugs ought to sound. Agent: Jenny Hewson and Peter Straus, Rogers, Coleridge and White. (Sept.)

From Booklist

What is it like for someone who loves music to not be able to hear it? That is the dilemma faced by Nick Coleman. Coleman, the former music editor of Time Out and arts and feature editor of various English newspapers, had spent a lifetime listening, writing about, and playing music. He loves all kinds of music, from rock to jazz to classical. His life changed when one morning he sat up in bed and realized that he couldn’t hear out of his right ear. Then he began to hear terrifying noises in his left ear. The effect that his hearing loss had on him was devastating on many levels. This compelling memoir chronicles his startling journey from a healthy middle-aged man to someone who, during the worst stages of his condition, could barely get out of bed. As he describes it, his head felt like it was ready to explode, he could neither stand nor sit up without support, and he felt nauseous much of the time. Doctors were either flabbergasted by his condition or shockingly nonchalant. Don’t worry, one physician said, “It may come back.” At one point, Coleman even Googled “assisted suicide.” A gripping memoir of survival and adaptability and a love of music. --June Sawyers

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Counterpoint (September 10, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1619021854
  • ISBN-13: 978-1619021853
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,346,294 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By ssread on September 6, 2014
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The Train in the Night: A Story of Music and Loss
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