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Half a Life: A Memoir Paperback – May 31, 2011
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The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
“Elegant, painful, stunningly honest . . . huge [and] heartbreaking.”—The New York Times Book Review
“Darin Strauss has spent a good part of his adult life reliving, regretting and reflecting on a single, split-second incident. Half a Life is a starkly honest account of that fateful moment and his life thereafter . . . penetrating, thought-provoking.”—The Washington Post
“A book that inspires admiration, sentence by sentence . . . This is a memoir in its finest form, a fully imagined and bittersweet book that transcends a single misstep.”—Chicago Tribune
“Painfully raw and beautifully written.”—Los Angeles Times
“A remarkable, beyond-brave memoir.”—O: The Oprah Magazine
“Lyrical and haunting.”—San Francisco Chronicle
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY NPR AND THE PLAIN DEALER
From the Author
Colum McCann interviews Darin Strauss on Half a Life
Top customer reviews
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He starts out the book by saying that he killed someone and takes us through the accident. One of the things I will never forget about this book is how the girl's mother tells him that he is now living life for two. And he sort of did - he carried the memory of her and the accident through his life for many years and found himself thinking of her every day for many years.
This book is a very good, interesting read. It's also a fairly quick read. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and it is one that I will keep on my bookshelf for years to come.
Half a Life is a thriller, too. What will happen to Darin when the dead girl’s parents, who have told him the words he thinks he most needs to hear — It wasn’t your fault — turn around and sue him for millions before his life has even begun? And it’s a love story, as well, of meeting the woman he’d marry, who’d make him see that this story, and what it had done to him, was no longer only his, that there was now someone else in it with him, and with that came a new level of responsibility. To make something of it. Which he did. Which he’s done. It’s a fine book.
That it took so long to get help, is very sad, but the author was able to tell his story, albeit too drawn out for my taste, but that's my opinion. If you've ever experienced what he has, I would recommend you read this as it will help you to realize that you are not alone, and that there is the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel.
live half your life with the knowledge that you killed someone. He describes what it is to live like that then how it is to have that relieved.
The writing is alluring and descriptive. I found myself taking mental note of his metaphors, memorizing the imagery he brought to mind, feeling as though through reading it, I also traveled through this journey. I thank you for sharing these intimate details of a life lived in the shadows. A part of this book will stay with me for a long time. Thank you for the experience.