When One Door Closes: A Teen's Inspiring Journey and Living Legacy

( 33 )

Overview

Chances are you or someone you love will soon be faced with an unexpected illness, disability or loss. The choices you make have the power to open new doors for yourself and for others. Discover the powerful influence one person can unleash in the face of tragedy by readingWhen One Door Closes.

One early fall day Alexandra (Alex) Graham came home from the mall complaining of pain in her knee. Three months later, at the age of 16, she was ...
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Overview

Chances are you or someone you love will soon be faced with an unexpected illness, disability or loss. The choices you make have the power to open new doors for yourself and for others. Discover the powerful influence one person can unleash in the face of tragedy by readingWhen One Door Closes.

One early fall day Alexandra (Alex) Graham came home from the mall complaining of pain in her knee. Three months later, at the age of 16, she was diagnosed with bone cancer. Her world and the world of those she loved would never be the same. Fighting osteogenic sarcoma, amputation of her leg and partial loss of lung Alex defines herself by who she is and the choices she makes, not by her illness. Over the course of a year, Alex did not get the miracle she wanted most, but her life and her selfless wish left the world a better place.

In their own words family, friends, medical experts, caregivers and a rock star describe how this teenage girl opened doors and made a difference in their lives. Even individuals who never met Alex share how their lives have taken on new meaning because of her wish and legacy. Through her story find ways you too can confront adversity, live life with meaning, comfort and inspire others, avoid needless guilt and establish a living legacy.
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Editorial Reviews

Cicely A. Richard
This book is inspiring for anyone faced with the sudden illness of a loved one, and the brevity of the chapters makes it an easy read.
ForeWord Magazine
ForeWord Magazine
When One Door Closes would benefit family members and friends of anyone with a severe illness. Alex's parents show the importance of honesty when children are diagnosed with cancer. Alex is aware of what's going on with her body; therefore, she is empowered because of her knowledge of what's happening to her. She is completely involved in her treatment, asking doctors questions about procedures she receives.

Teenagers can benefit from this story because Alex's friends exemplify the importance of a close network. The Grahams expect people to shy away from them when Alex is diagnosed but are surprised by their growing circle of friends and by the fact that Alex never experiences loneliness. Alex's friends remain close to her on good days and bad ones.

Although the overall message of the book is positive, When One Door Closes lets readers into Alex's mind by means of her journal entries, telling readers how she feels about losing her hair to chemotherapy and about her future dreams. This shows that she is still a teenager with vanities and aspirations.

Author H. Thomas Saylor decided to write this book with the Grahams after a chance encounter with Alex's mother, Susie. The only drawback of this book is the number of people recounting their stories; many of them share too much background information before talking about their relationship with Alex. However, this book is inspiring for anyone faced with the sudden illness of a loved one, and the brevity of the chapters makes it an easy read.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780976201212
  • Publisher: Three Dot, L.L.C.
  • Publication date: 8/1/2008
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 228
  • Sales rank: 609,756
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 33 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 33 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 25, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Mom's Choice Awards Recipient!

    When One Door Closes: A Teen's Inspiring Journey and Living Legacy is a recipient of the prestigious Mom's Choice Award. The Mom's Choice Awards honors excellence in family-friendly media, products and services. An esteemed panel of judges includes education, media and other experts as well as parents, children, librarians, performing artists, producers, medical and business professionals, authors, scientists and others. A sampling of the panel members includes: Dr. Twila C. Liggett, ten-time Emmy-winner, professor and founder of PBS's Reading Rainbow; Julie Aigner-Clark, Creator of Baby Einstein and The Safe Side Project; Jodee Blanco, New York Times best-selling Author; LeAnn Thieman, motivational speaker and coauthor of seven Chicken Soup For The Soul books; and Tara Paterson, Certified Parent Coach and founder of the Mom's Choice Awards. Parents and educators look for the Mom's Choice Awards seal in selecting quality materials and products for children and families.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 4, 2008

    Life Changing

    This is a book that you will want to read more than once! It's very gripping! You CAN'T read this book and not be changed. Alex was truly a remarkable girl and her legacy will LIVE on. I loved the compassion and love behind every word on every page. Thank you to ALL who contributed to this work.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 2, 2008

    A reviewer

    I would recommend When One Door Closes to those of all walks of life teens, young adults, adults, and the elderly. Alex offers wise life lessons on the power of attitude, perspective, strength, and love. Not only does she offer lessons through hardships of illness, but the reader can find strength in Alex's example and apply it to any adversity in life, even the smallest bumps in the road.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2013

    Highly recommended

    This book has a message for anyone dealing with an illness. Alex and her family took a tragedy and used it to help and enlighten others.

    The book is very well written with an interesting concept.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2008

    Wonderful Parents!

    I think the Grahams are wonderful parents to raise such an extraordinary child. Their contributions to the situation are one of the main reasons Alex could reach out to others. Her family continuously loved and supported her throughout her treatment, as did her friends. By encouraging Alex's friends to visit at home and the hospital, they provided their daughter with maximum support. By telling her the truth about her disease, they gave Alex the freedom to believe what they told her. (Patients can sense the truth)<BR/>The family and friends' efforts to raise money for ACS and Make a Wish, in Alex's name, is a lasting legacy to her memory. Thank you Grahams for teaching us how to cope with whatever may happen in an uncertain world.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2008

    Wow!

    ¿When One Door Closes¿ is an extremely well written story of a teen¿s tragic but inspiring fight with cancer. The authors expose the reader to the many cycles of emotion experienced by not only the teen herself but her friends, parents, family, church, medical staff and even her community (and soon you the reader). Her many special qualities and the journey she took with this disease will encourage you to seek out the next opened door. You will appreciate (as I did) this experience being shared.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 4, 2008

    LIFE LESSON

    This book, presented in an interesting and easy to read format, is a 'must read' not only for individuals and families dealing with serious illness but for those who have never faced devastating, life-changing challenges. We read of a young woman who bravely takes on these circumstances with amazing strength and determination,not yielding to self-pity,instead showing compassion and understanding toward others. This book lets you put yourself in another's place and ask 'What would I do? How would I react?' Important things to think about!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 4, 2008

    An inspirational legacy

    A story worth reading of an inspirational legacy. These are the reminders we need that the world is only as we choose to see it, and that our life is more far reaching and powerful than we can ever understand. Thanks to the Graham family and friends for letting us all learn and be inspired by Alex's attitude and outlook.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2008

    An inspiring journey

    A heartbreaking journey filled with honest remembrances. A must read for anyone who has or will ever face adversity (all of us...). A fitting tribute to an amazing young woman.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 18, 2008

    Angel

    Alex has redefined my understanding of an Angel.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2008

    Her love shines on...

    Heartbreaking yet so heartwarming. I was humbled and totally inspired

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 16, 2008

    A Truly Inspiring Read

    It doesn¿t sound right when I say aloud that I loved this book when I think of the circumstances of why it was written but once I started reading it I just could not put it down. I was compelled to search for an answer or make some sense out of why bad things happen to good people. Perhaps one day I will get that answer but for now I know I will walk away trying to be a better and stronger person because Alex¿s story is so inspiring. Who knows - maybe one day I will discover that this is the answer for me. I want to thank her parents, family and friends who have so graciously shared Alex¿s story with the world. I¿m sure Alex is smiling down on everyone.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2008

    A Must Read

    What a powerful book. Insightful and moving, it pulls your whole heart into the book and the life of Alex. Well written with lessons to be grasped. Don't miss the opportunity to truly be moved in heart.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 11, 2008

    Just what I needed.

    An inspirational story of faith and courage. For everyone that has suffered a recent loss, or is having trouble on their journey in grief. Alex's story is balm for the hurting heart. She leaves a legacy that continues to touch and heal the hurting.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2008

    Where There Is Life...

    This book is not only a moving account of how a young girl handled the illness that took her life but it also shows how her attitude affected all those whose lives she touched. That Alex was courageous and uncomplaining is a given but what came through to me was how she maintained her fantastic sense of humor even at the worst of times, and continued to have fun, at the best. Instead of feeling sorry for herself when her leg had to be amputated, she had her girlfriends polish her toenails the night before the operation and wrote a message on her leg for the surgeon, cautioning him to be sure to remove the 'sick' leg and not the healthy one. Whenever she was physically able to, Alex continued to go to concerts, games, shopping and to the beach with her friends. She even 'danced' at a wedding in her wheelchair and helped out her mom in her card store. As long as there was life in her frail, little body, she lived it to the very best of her ability, right up to the end. Since her parent's share of the book's proceeds is going to the Make A Wish Foundation, by buying it you can play a part in helping to make a desperately sick child's wish come true while learning what real courage is all about and keeping Alex's memory alive.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 8, 2008

    Wow!

    I regret that I never had the chance to meet Alex. But I feel like I got to know what an amazing person she was by reading this book. Each chapter shared another treasured memory by the people whose lives she touched. Alex will never be defined by the disease that took her life. She showed her strength and spirit in each day of her short life. Still today, Alex's legacy lives on. Even people who never knew her can benefit from her wisdom, attitude, and love of life. I highly recommend this book!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2008

    Tragic and inspirational

    Because the book is written from so many different perspectives it gives the reader a Rashomon effect of this girl's life and illness. It is ultimately sad, but at the same time gives insight into coping with an illness that effects so many people, not just those who are afflicted with the disease. A great read. Highly recommend.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2008

    A must read!

    This book comprises poignant, straight from heart reflections from those whose lives were deeply touched and influenced by Alex. Through it you get to know her, even if you have never met her. Every person on earth needs to read this book!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 9, 2008

    How to learn about living from someone dying

    Every page of this book shows you how to live your life in very simple terms. In her short life, Alex touched everyone she knew showing us how easy it is to make the right choices in life. Now her generous parents are sharing Alex's simple magic with the world. This book gives the reader the strength and courage to live life as all humans should. The world would be much improved if everyone read it. You will be much improved if you read it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 11, 2008

    You can't help but be changed after reading Alex's story

    It's rare these days to not be connected to someone who is undergoing a life-threatening disease. It's even rarer to find someone like Alex who used her situation to have a positive and lasting impact on others. While the subject matter is heavy in terms of a young girl's fight with cancer, it reads in a way that lets you, the reader, stop and reflect on each chapter as its own story, taking it in at your own pace. Having said that, I found myself completely captivated and had a very hard time putting it down. I especially enjoyed the excerpts from Alex's journal and the stories of her family and friends. Alex was a normal girl, but in so many ways she was an extraordinary soul. Her life is inspiring, and you will be changed after reading her story.

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