Journey Into Paralysis

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Journey Into Paralysis: Craig Hospital, Love and Madness is John A. Bahr’s memoir that deals with his tragic motocross accident, which—devastatingly—left him paralyzed. Bahr details his life before and during the accident, but the bulk of the memoir is devoted to his recovery and life afterward, starting with his rehabilitation at Craig Hospital in Colorado, where he first began to acclimate himself to life as a quadriplegic. Truthfully, with such delicate subject matter and with an author who has been through tremendous pain and trepidation, it’s difficult to judge Bahr’s memoir without getting emotional. Bahr has, effectively, put together Journey Into Paralysis to thank everyone who’s helped him along his voyage and to share his story for people who might either be going through something similar or for readers who know someone who’s struggling and don’t know where to turn. But speaking strictly in terms of writing quality, Journey Into Paralysis could’ve benefitted tremendously from a developmental editor. The beginning of the book lacks any real linear narrative, with random times and places discussed on a whim—not to mention far too many people mentioned haphazardly to remember all of them—and the pre-injury Bahr comes across as a mix of Marlon Brando’s Johnny Strabler in The Wild One meets a non-comedy version of Will Ferrell’s Ricky Bobby from Talladega Nights; there is a Rebel Without a Cause–esque insatiable lust for more, ever speeding faster, an irreverence and lashing out against something (or someone) that doesn’t appear in the pages. However, once Bahr gets into speaking about his injury and subsequent recovery, the book hits its stride. Bahr’s narrative becomes clearer, his writing more concise, his sentiments more sympathetic. Journey Into Paralysis finds its purpose, as does Bahr, on the road to recovery. It’s truly a testament to this man’s will that he stays so positive and constantly helps others when the outlook would seem dim to most. Journey Into Paralysis reads as a poignant thank-you to those who helped John along his way—as well as a love letter to education, which Bahr credits with saving him. But also, more importantly, it reminds readers that, even in dire circumstances, life is still as beautiful as you make it.

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Star Count 2/5
Format Trade
Page Count 194 pages
Publisher John Bahr
Publish Date 07-Jan-2015
ISBN 9780990690603 Buy this Book
Issue May 2015
Category Biographies & Memoirs


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