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“A vibrant mother in her thirties learns what matters most in life when a car crash leaves her with a traumatic brain disorder called “left neglect.”

Sarah Nickerson, like any other working mom, is busy trying to have it all. One morning while racing to work and distracted by her cell phone, she looks away from the road for one second too long. In that blink of an eye, all the rapidly moving parts of her over-scheduled life come to a screeching halt. After a brain injury steals her awareness of everything on her left side, Sarah must retrain her mind to perceive the world as a whole. In so doing, she also learns how to pay attention to the people and parts of her life that matter most. ”

Ok, so to start this off I have to say it again: I am a big nerd. When it comes to psychology especially abnormal psychology or social psychology you got me hooked. I’m also a really big fan of books like My Sister’s Keeper. This book plays on that hardcore. The book starts off telling about a power couple that loves being busy and working hard. Soon, a car accident changes their life because the main woman loses her left.

The condition is known as Unilateral Neglect or Left Neglect. The person loses their left. They don’t see things on the left side, they have little to no control of their left hand, and they turn all the way around on the right to go left. There is a lot that can go wrong and that was simple before that is really difficult, if not impossible, without a left side. The condition is usually caused by a traumatic brain injury, but the condition isn’t well understood to say that a TBI is the only way of acquiring it. Some people heal quickly and regain their left side; others never get their left side back again.

This novel is a dramatization of left neglect that like Still Alice (MUST READ) makes the condition more human. You can read about these conditions in medical journals, in text books, or see it on TV (though TV has yet to reference left neglect that I am aware of) but it is hard to feel that emotional struggle of the condition. This book made me realized how much my left side matters and how lucky I am that when I have had bumps on the head that I never lost anything important.

This book is one you have to read. I was captivated for the beginning and I did my best to read it every break at work and on the train. There is no reason to put this book down, unless you are driving (the main woman learns quickly enough that texting and driving is really dangerous, even if you know the road and it is only a short text).

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5 out of 5 stars. I highly recommend this book.

You can buy this book here.

~Isaiah

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