Eleven Seconds: A Story of Tragedy, Courage, & Triumph [NOOK Book]


In this heartfelt testament to the power of love and the strength of the human spirit, Travis Roy, who suffered a devastating injury eleven seconds into his first college hockey game, reveals how he has managed to cope after the accident and, with the help of family and friends, overcome tremendous barriers to begin a new life.
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Eleven Seconds: A Story of Tragedy, Courage, & Triumph

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In this heartfelt testament to the power of love and the strength of the human spirit, Travis Roy, who suffered a devastating injury eleven seconds into his first college hockey game, reveals how he has managed to cope after the accident and, with the help of family and friends, overcome tremendous barriers to begin a new life.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780446553254
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
  • Publication date: 12/14/2008
  • Sold by: Hachette Digital, Inc.
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 156,334
  • File size: 745 KB

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 45 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 45 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 8, 2009

    An inspirational story of one man's courageous battle with a spinal cord injury.

    Eleven Seconds is a great, feel-good story about a remarkable college hockey player's career that's over in 11 seconds. Travis Roy was at the next step of his aspiration of becoming a professional hockey player, when a once-in-a-million accident on the ice of Boston University, ended his life-long dream. Once he got over living a life that many dream of, he explored a new path to his life.

    This book was inspirational for me, and most likely for many others, of different ages, of different genders. He has made a great life out of what a lot of people would consider depressing. Ever since his accident he has dreamed of returning to the ice, anyway possible, although, he says, "Unfortunately, quadriplegic hockey does not appear to be do-able.I can tell you that 450 pounds of wheelchair skidding on ice would not be a pretty thing to be near." He feels strongly that they'll find a cure to spinal cord injuries in his lifetime, and I hope the same for all people suffering from this terrible fate.

    Overall, this is one of the best books I've ever read. It kept me engaged throughout the duration of the book. The story was very interesting and I think it targets audiences that are interested in sports, or just a feel-good story. I recommend this to teens-adults who want a great read about a sports hero!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 13, 2009

    11 Seconds

    Amazing story. Enlighteneing, sad, touching, inspirational.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 7, 2009

    A book that paints picture with a thousand words!

    Eleven Seconds is a book with a variety of different moods within every page, from ecstatic to forlorn. It's by Travis Roy. This memoir is about Travis Roy, a boy who wants to become a professional hockey player. He ends up going to Boston University, and during his first game as a college player, he goes for the puck in the corner, and gets hit, head first into the boards. Eleven seconds into his college hockey career, he loses it all.
    I think this book can be read by anyone who likes sports or just wants a very inspirational book. Like Travis said, "No matter what happens in life, I still have to believe life goes on." This book is amazing on what Travis does and what he wishes he still could do, if he wasn't paralyzed. He faces a lot of problems thought out this story, and one of them is just trying to become social again. He teaches the hockey team. These conflicts just make you cry on the inside. I think is book should be read by anyone who likes sport action or a bit of drama. It's a classic in my book.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 7, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Best Book ever

    Eleven Seconds by Travis Roy is about a young man and his love for hockey. He grew up North Yarmouth, Maine and had dreams of becoming a professional hockey player. He had a huge love for the game, and you "wouldn't have to tell him twice to grab my skates." He finally made it on the Boston University college hockey team and with in the first eleven seconds hit his head on the boards and got paralyzed; his life would never be the same. He can never be able to teach his kids the game his dad taught him, he can't play the game he loves, and worst of all, his dreams of becoming an NHL player were crushed. Before the accident, Travis was also a two sports star: soccer and hockey. This book doesn't tell you much of the soccer, but it does tell you a lot about hockey.

    I think this book is good for all ages, and anyone who likes hockey or just a good book. I think this book is inspirering for all people, especially young kids (to think that if they love a sport it can't last forever, so enjoy it.) I feel really bad for Travis because if I lost the game that I loved then I wouldn't know what to do because hockey is my life too. By Tyler Jordan

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 20, 2014

    Eleven seconds By Travis Roy and E.M.Swift is a story about Roy┬┐

    Eleven seconds By Travis Roy and E.M.Swift is a story about Roy’s tragedy, courage, and triumph. Travis grew up in a hockey family, he began playing at a very young age. As a boy he dreamed of playing at a division 1 college and then eventually moving onto be in the NHL. Travis’s dreams were coming true, he committed to play hockey for Boston University, the number one hockey team in the country. As a freshman Travis was starting, in the season opener, as a promising hopeful hockey star. His first eleven seconds as a college player would also be his last. In a freak accident Travis went flying into the boards cracking one of his vertebra, leaving him paralyzed from the neck down.  The book continues on telling about his struggles with the injury and also how he inspired and touched millions of fans. This was an amazing story and I recommend it to anyone looking to be truly inspired by the human body and a persons will to continue. I liked the way the author didn’t try to make the audience feel pity for him but rather to be inspired by him. Some parts of the book could jump around a little but they always came back together to help the audience understand why something was the way it was. The major messages of the book were believing in your dreams and to continue to strive for triumph no matter what.  

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 19, 2014

    Eleven Seconds, written by Travis Roy and E.M. Smith is an ins

    Eleven Seconds, written by Travis Roy and E.M. Smith is an inspirational story about Travis Roy, a suffering quadriplegic who had a promised career with the Boston University hockey team. In the first 11 seconds of Travis’ first hockey game with his dream team, he was paralyzed from the shoulders down. With the continuous support of his friends, family, coach, and girlfriend Maija, Travis overcomes the unfortunate obstacles that come along with being a quadriplegic.

    The major message in this book is to live every day to the fullest and approach every situation in life with good spirits. We can never know when something we love more than life itself will be taken away form us. This book makes you really think how lucky we are to be able to even walk or even feed ourselves. Imagine if you could never do the things you love ever again. Imagine if all your life long dreams were crushed within eleven seconds. Another message in this book was to cherish and appreciate your family and friends. Most quadriplegics and paraplegics want to commit suicide when they are stuck in these situations. Since there are no cures for these injuries yet, it is very difficult to enjoy every moment of life when you cannot move ¾ of your body. Being a quadriplegic not only puts barriers on your physical movement, but it put barriers on your social life as well. It is difficult to have a social life when someone has to do everything for you at every moment of every day.

    What I liked about this book is it truly showed Travis Roy’s unbelievable transformation. He transformed from a negative, heartbroken used to be college hockey player to an inspirational, uplifting man who makes the best of his life as a quadriplegic. It is very fulfilling to know that he can still have a good time and enjoy his family and friends when more than half is body does not function. However, I wish this novel explained more about how his family and friends dealt with this situation. It is easier to get a feel for what it would be like to be a quadriplegic, but I would love to learn more about how it truly affected everyone else around him. I believe it would be just as difficult to watch someone you love go through that. Everyone should read this because it made me humble and thankful for everything I am blessed with.

    If anyone finds books about quadriplegics interesting, I would recommend Me before You, by JoJo Moyes. It is a very romantic and inspiring story about a 23 year old that became a quadriplegic when he was in a motorcycle accident. Overall, this novel was very uplifting and I believe everyone should take the time to read it!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 6, 2014


    This book

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2013


    My brother had to read this book for school , and i want to read it too. He wont let me borrow his copy.. sounds insparational thoguh. Travis roy is very brave.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 11, 2013

    I love this book

    I love this book! Its amazing and so inspirational! I want to meet travis roy he is my idol! I cant even describe how amazing thus book is!! I DEFINITLY RECOMEND THIS BOOK TO EVERYONE! This is a must read for everyone! :) love you Travis!

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  • Posted April 7, 2009

    An inspiring memoir.

    One of the best sports books of all time is Eleven Seconds, by Travis Roy and E. M. Swift. It combines perfectly the ambition to become an NHL player, strait to a fight for his life. It started with him at his early childhood growing up with a hockey stick, then BAM! He's checked into the wall and breaks his neck between the C 4 and C 5 vertebra. Travis then goes through intensive rehab. Quote from Travis: "I would give anything in the world to hug Maija." (His girlfriend.)
    I recommend this book because it is easy to for all people. Second it is motivational for people from how he recovers and goes on with his life. Third it will inspire other hockey players to fill in his shoes (not including the accident part.)

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  • Posted April 7, 2009

    11 seconds

    Eleven Seconds is an inspirational book about one man whose life changed right before his eyes. This book is suspenseful and shocking, and I recommend it to anyone who's interested. Travis Roy stepped onto the ice in his college varsity hockey debut at Boston University. When eleven seconds later, he became paralyzed from the neck down. This book shares with us how he deals with the pain of being paralyzed. This book also talks about how he had a terrible thing happen to him, Travis Roy learned how to deal with his "new" life and come up with new goals for himself. This is a vary inspirational book.
    I liked this book because it's a shocking, sports story that you can't stop reading. I give it a 5 out of 5 stars because it's a very good book. It's not the best book, but out of all the other books ive read, its one of the best. You should definitely read this if you like sports books. I definitely recommend this to anyone. Its kind of a sad book knowing that once you get onto the ice your hockey career is over.
    "And right away it passed through my mind I was probably paralyzed. Strange, that. I'd never heard of such an injury in hockey, but it was one of the first things into my head. And just as quickly, I knew it was over. Eleven seconds after my first face-off, college hockey was finished for me" (pg. 41).

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  • Posted March 24, 2009

    eleven seconds

    The book Eleven Seconds is a Tragedy, Courage and Triumph story of a young athlete Travis Roy's and his struggle with paralysis from playing in a hockey game. His whole life he had a dream to play D1 hockey for collage, and he got the oppertunity to play for Boston University. His dream was cut short by a freak accedent that happened in the first eleven seconds of his creer. The accedent ended up paralising travis making him a C-2 quad, but it also made him stronger. recovering from such a dramatic accedent, travis tells you the life he had befor and after the tragedy and how he overcame situations he faced. The story is inspirational and makes you look at life from a different angle.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2008

    *****A Hero to all young hockey players

    Travis Roy was a gifted twenty-year-old hockey player. Then seconds into his first college game as a B.U. freshman, an accident kicked Travis into the boards. With a cracked fourth vertebra that made him paralyzed from the neck down. This was a great book written by Travis Roy and E.M. swift. Travis is a legend and hero to everyone. The theme of the book is, life can/could be not easy at times but you have to fight through the challenges and move on with your lifes. I like this book because it shows how Travis never gave up. The dislikes about this book is how it shows that your career can end unbelievably fast. The reasons why someone should read this book would be because this book shows that there are going to be challenges through out you life and have to fight through these challenges and move on with your life. The book is about the adventure and obstacles Travis went through. ¿I feel I¿m getting to the point where I¿m ready to surrender to God¿s will, like everything¿s going to be alright. That thought gives me the strength to continue to try to do my best and, whether there¿s a cure for my injury or not, to move my life forward and positive direction.¿ This shows Travis¿s determination for life and dealing with his injury. I loved how the writers 'Travis Roy and E.M. swift' describe everything that happened in Travis¿s life. You don¿t realize how much your legs and arms really mean to you, until you loose the ability to use or you know someone who lost them. This is one of my favorite books I have ever read! You should try reading this book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2008

    An inspiring story that will make you cry, but in a happy way.

    ¿My first rule of life is to be yourself. My second rule of life is to never take things for granted.¿ In Eleven Seconds Travis finds that these rules would apply to him even more after the accident. His biggest day had arrived. Playing hockey for BU, a division 1 school, had been his goal since he was a boy and he achieved that for only eleven seconds. This happy day had turned into a nightmare, as Travis Roy cracked his fourth vertebra and because of that he got paralyzed from the neck down. He is now a quadriplegic who can only move his head and select arm muscle groups. His dreams of being a hockey star had been crushed before his eyes. I think Travis Roy and Sports Illustrated hockey writer E.M. Swift did a wonderful job in making an inspiring story about tragedy, courage, and triumph. It was a tragedy that the accident happened and Travis refers to that a lot in the book. He had courage when kids in BU ignored him for being in a wheelchair, so he needed to break through the social barrier and try to get back into his normal life as a college hockey player who was self- confident. Travis had a lot of triumph because in the end he was finally starting to relate to his hockey team again. I think there is a lot to be learned in this book about feelings and other people. I know now that it¿s okay to cry and help people that are less fortunate than us, because they are probably going through some hard times in their life. I think there are many things to be learned from this book. Many people can relate to this book, especially hockey players and people who have dreams they hope will come true. Imagine one day you were doing the thing you loved like soccer or painting, and then you suddenly couldn¿t move your legs or hands. That¿s how Travis felt. I can relate to this story because I love hockey and dream of having a successful career in it. I have a pretty good idea of how hard it must have been for Travis not to be able to play this fast, exciting, sport, although I hope I don¿t need to face the pain he did. I would recommend this book to everyone because I think it is a good thing to be aware of what could happen and that there are other people who are going through the same things.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2008

    Life changes fast

    Imagine eleven seconds into your college hockey career, you go sliding headfirst into the boards, and become paralyzed for life? That¿s what happened to Travis Roy and he shares his story in the memoir Eleven Seconds, written by Travis Roy and with the help of E.M. Swift. Right as Travis went down, his dad knew better than anyone else, that if he could get up he would whenever Travis fell as a kid, Mr. Roy would always say ¿Get up, your not hurt, get up¿ and Travis always bounced back up. So he knew better than anyone, that this time Travis Couldn¿t get up. Travis was a typical Maine kid, growing up in Yarmouth, Maine, playing hockey, hanging out with his friends, going to school and all that. His dream was always to play Division 1 college hockey, then play in the AHL, the USA Olympic team, and then the NHL. In high school, Travis went to three different schools: Yarmouth High School for his freshman year, North Yarmouth Academy for his sophomore and junior year, and Tabor Academy for his second junior year and senior year. Travis then decided to go to Boston University on a full hockey scholarship. Then it happened. I think that I appreciate this book more than others would because Travis grew up just a few towns over from me and I play hockey at ¿Travis Roy Arena¿, a rink dedicated in his honor. I would recommend this book to all ages and all types of people. Eleven Seconds is so inspiring, helping people with mental or physical disabilities. This book has helped me understand that quadriplegics are not just disabled, people their just people that have been in a major accident and most likely broken their neck.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2008

    Every seconds counts in the face of tragedy

    It only took eleven seconds to craft this extraordinary memoir. Eleven Seconds, written by Travis Roy, realizes his dream and then it quickly crashes into a horrible nightmare. Ever since Travis was a child, his life revolved around hockey. His one goal was to play Division 1 hockey. Achieving this ambitious dream while playing in the first game of the season, within eleven frightful seconds it was all taken away from him he became paralyzed from the neck down. The book starts out with a normal kid who loves hockey and does anything to fit in the time to practice. Travis¿s dad ran a skating skills camp, so Travis is advanced compared to the other skaters his age. Throughout high school, he was one of the best hockey players on the team. He soon transfers to a prep school and they have a great hockey facility. Showing off his skills and ability to the coaches, he received a spot on the BU hockey team. The first eleven seconds of his hockey career flashes right in front of him and quickly ends. For the first few months after this tragedy happened, he couldn¿t talk due to the hoses and cords running threw his mouth and down his throat. All his hopes and dreams of playing for the NHL are over. ¿I was in a state of denial, of nonacceptance {SIC}, still hoping to wake up one day with my movement miraculously restored.¿ Finally Travis is able to leave the hospital, and arrives home on a snowy day on April 13, 1996. He has to be manhandled around in a wheel chair from now on. What does he think of this? Who will take care of him? What will his life be like now? These are the kinds of questions that floated through my head as I was reading this memoir. This is a wonderful book for hockey lovers, players, fans or anybody who likes to read about triumph in the face of tragedy.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2008

    one man, so much courage

    Eleven Seconds, a memoir written by Travis Roy, is an extreme page-turner, I had a hard time putting it down. I have read many stories about people who are paralyzed, but never one as open and honest as Travis¿. ¿I wondered what he was doing. Then I saw that he was moving my arm. He was picking it up and moving it, and I felt nothing.¿ Hockey was his love, his passion, and now he could never play again. He had become paralyzed from the neck down during his first college hockey game that was going to be his big break. He had to learn how to live in a wheelchair, because he couldn¿t do anything by himself. He needed help with everything. Eleven Seconds is a journey of Travis¿ triumph, courage, hope and so much more. This amazing young man leaves nothing out, the good , the bad, and the ugly. He shares his deepest feeling about his unfortunate situation. Travis is truly a remarkable person and is so strong to have the courage to share his life, so that others can see a glimpse into the life of a quadriplegic. This book 6 the best book I¿ve read in a long time. If you want a true, inspirational, heartbreaking, amazing, and courageous story, Eleven Seconds is the book to choose!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2008

    This book is a real eye opener to realize how lucky you are.

    Have you worked so hard at a sport and tried to reach a dream and then when you finally get there, everything you did is gone? Imagine living the first eleven seconds of your dream and then everything is taken away from you. ¿And just as quickly, I knew it was over. Eleven seconds after my face-off, college hockey was finished for me¿. Travis, a hockey player from Maine, is a strong person that has worked very hard to achieve his dream. At a very young age, Travis Roy had a love for hockey. His dad coached him, pushed him hard, and always told him to get up when he was hurt, it paid off. When Travis was in high school, he was a very advanced hockey player. As high school came to an end, Travis started to think about Division 1 colleges. He hoped that he would play somewhere where there was a strong hockey team. Travis worked all the way up to playing Division 1 college hockey at Boston University. There, at his first D1 hockey game, his coach told him as a freshman that he would be starting in the game. Travis was so happy but then in the first eleven seconds, he had an unusual fall that caused him to become paralyzed. That one moment changed the rest of his life. I loved this book! It really made me think about how hard it is for a person to experience that. Being in a hospital, not being able to talk or move, and to only look at one part of the hospital 'the ceiling', must be extremely difficult. I thought that he was so lucky to have his family, his friends, and even his coach here, to caring about him so much to be there, day and night helping him recover. I can relate to this tragic story by loving basketball so much to try hard to get into a D1 college too. In addition my dad is always pushing me to be the best player I can be. This story motivated me to practice basketball, as much as I can. I couldn¿t even think of how he felt at that moment when he knew he was paralyzed and this time his dad couldn¿t tell him to get up and keep playing. This story made me think about how difficult it is to be paralyzed and I think I learned a lot from this book. This book is a real eye opener to realize how lucky you are. I give it 5 stars!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2008

    An amazing story of courage that is entertaining to the very end!

    If I had to choose three words to describe Eleven Seconds, a memoir by Travis Roy, they would be hilarious, moving, and courageous. Travis Roy grew up in Yarmouth, Maine and was a hockey player since he was 6 years old. He then went on to Boston University and was a promising freshmen until 11 seconds into his first shift of his first college game, a freak accident drove him head first into the boards shattering his 4th vertebrae and paralyzing him from the neck down. First of all, although it might seem like hilarious would be a good word choice for this book but it is because even when Travis is in his darkest moments he manages to make them funny. Second I would choose moving to describe this book because I cannot comprehend not being able to use my arms and legs but Travis doesn¿t focus on his disabilities, instead he focuses on his abilities that he is still able to do. I would also choose moving because while he is in the hospital he is not wondering why this happened to him, instead he is wondering, ¿Why is everyone donating his or her money to me? Is it because my accident was broadcast on TV? There are plenty of other paralyses victims other than me.¿ If I was in the hospital and I was not able to move my body I would not want to be selfish but I would take all of the help that I could get. Last but certainly not least I would choose courageous because if I were in his shoes I would not even want to try to do anything, Travis has a better attitude. He says in the book ¿I just know that there will be a cure for paralysis one day and I want to live to see it.¿ Although it would be cool to have voice activated machines like Travis, I would not want to pay the price. If I had to choose a section from the book that was most moving for me, it would probably be when he goes into the boards and says, ¿I went to get up and there was nothing. Nothing.¿ Overall Eleven Seconds is a great book and I would strongly recommend it to anyone, of any age! I would definitely give Eleven Seconds five stars!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2008

    Reading this book usually takes more than Eleven seconds

    ¿`Dad,¿ I said, feeling tears well up in my eyes. `What is it?¿ he asked, trying to smile. `I made it¿.¿ This quote touched me and I will always remember it. Eleven Seconds starts with Travis Roy, a 7-year-old kid whose exposure to hockey is like none anyone has ever seen. As a child he was a promising hockey player, and was accepted into a Division I college, playing for Boston University. During his first game, he was ready to dominate the rink, but only eleven seconds into the game his check was avoided and he crashed into the boards, paralyzing him from the shoulders down. The reader follows Travis through his recovery, making national news all the while. He starts out in an ordinary hospital in Boston, but is sent to a new hospital made especially for quadruplics. When it was obvious that Boston¿s Hospital couldn¿t handle the responsibilities of taking care of Travis, he is transferred to a new hospital, and is treated well and his condition improves after 1 week of living in the new hospital. After 2 weeks at the new hospital, he is brought home and is surprised to see that life as a paralysis victim isn¿t as bad as he first thought (though it is still hard for him and his family). His girlfriend Maija, stays with him throughout the story and never leaves his side. Without her, Travis might not have been able to keep on going. I think this book is great for all ages I started reading it for an ELA project, as it was the only book that looked interesting to me. But when I started reading, I couldn¿t put it down until I finished (how many times have you heard that?). I think many people can relate to feeling left out in sports, or any other recreational activity, because of an injury. I would give this book 5 stars and would give it more if possible. The words of Travis and Swift describing his experience will make you feel like you were right next to him, as he went through the pain and joy of slowly recuperating.

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