One More Theory About Happiness

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Overview

Whiting Award-winning poet Paul Guest was twelve years old, racing down a hill on a too-big, ancient bicycle when he discovered he had no brakes. Trying to steer into anything that would slow him down, he hit a ditch, was thrown over the handlebars, and broke his neck.

One More Theory About Happiness follows a boy into manhood, his path marked by a hard-earned acceptance and a biting sense of humor. In incisive and lyrical prose, Guest shows us that a body irrevocably changed ...

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One More Theory about Happiness: A Memoir

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Overview

Whiting Award-winning poet Paul Guest was twelve years old, racing down a hill on a too-big, ancient bicycle when he discovered he had no brakes. Trying to steer into anything that would slow him down, he hit a ditch, was thrown over the handlebars, and broke his neck.

One More Theory About Happiness follows a boy into manhood, his path marked by a hard-earned acceptance and a biting sense of humor. In incisive and lyrical prose, Guest shows us that a body irrevocably changed can lead to a life fiercely cherished.

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Editorial Reviews

Bret Lott
“I read this book in one sitting....Heartbreakingly funny, pitilessly honest, [this] is above all a quiet and bold and loving work of art that renders beautifully what it means to live. You must read this book.”
Said Sayrafiezadeh
“Sweet and beautiful and wrenching. By so generously providing a window into his own difficult experience, Guest shows us how profoundly fragile the human body truly is, how quickly our lives can be changed forever...and most importantly, how it’s possible to create a new definition of wholeness.”
Charles Bock
“[An] unbelievable story...[about] an unthinkable situation, a deep level of hell, really. Guest is never self-pitying, never gets sentimental; this is not feel good tripe, or inspirational; it is deeper and more important than that—smart and honest and clear eyed and above all, humane.”
New York Times Book Review
“Guest writes more directly than ever before about his paralysis.... Guest’s work, which cannot redeem his brokenness or ours...makes something beautiful out of it. And that is enough.”
Dallas Morning News
“[Guest] tells his story in short scenes that break to white space before they might prompt pity. He zigzags before we might hold him up as an example, a symbol...His memoir voice is gentle and matter-of-fact. His details are astounding and unforgettable.”
Los Angeles Times
“Guest remembers; gently, carefully, painfully, each new milestone from the accident forward. He is blessed with a sharp sense of humor...it is an effervescent book: irrepressible, buoyant.”
USA Today
“Lean, arresting . . . With zero gush and sentiment, [Guest] conveys [a] quiet heroism . . . Guest is an unconventional and provocative observer of himself. And of us, the ‘able-bodied.’ ”
NPR.org
“Far from a saccharine ‘triumph of the human spirit,’ Guest’s memoir is marked by his winning humor and bare-naked honesty, distilled into poetic prose....alert[s] us to the amazing ability of the human body and mind to reconcile with an unbearable reality.”
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
“[A] graceful and unflinching account....a remarkable journey that Guest, who possesses a dark sense of the absurd and an eye for the vulnerability of both the injured and the whole, presents in scenes that run the gamut from the horrific to the sublime.”
Cleveland Plain Dealer
“[A] tightly written, candid memoir...[Guest] unearths a poet’s faculty for succinct, smart description, narrating his own life in this memoir as a surprisingly dispassionate observer.”
New York Review of Books
“Guest’s poems combine furious rage with furious excitement in long, breathless lines that, at the last possible moment, break.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061685187
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 5/3/2011
  • Pages: 208
  • Sales rank: 383,019
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Paul Guest

Paul Guest is the author of three poetry collections, The Resurrection of the Body and the Ruin of the World, which won the 2002 New Issues Prize in Poetry; Notes for My Body Double, which won the 2006 Prairie Schooner Book Prize; and My Index of Slightly Horrifying Knowledge. The recipient of a 2007 Whiting Award, he lives in Atlanta, Georgia.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 4 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 5, 2010

    Excellent read

    Not exactly a memoir in my opinion but nonetheless a compelling read. I felt as if i was left wanting more which i guess is the intent of any author. Many great stories have been left out........maybe a part 2 .....perhaps? I recommend this book emphatically to all!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 9, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 26, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 16, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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