A survivor’s story that is both upbeat and candid.




Magazine writer Nash (Altared States, not reviewed) shares her experience of breast cancer.

The author was in her mid-30s, married with two young daughters, when she learned that a close friend had lung cancer. She quickly became convinced that a sore spot in her own left breast must also be caused by cancer. It was not, but the mammogram did show suspicious calcifications in her right breast. Nash writes frankly and movingly about the emotion-packed period that followed: she had a second mammogram; a very painful biopsy revealed that she indeed had cancer; and she underwent a lumpectomy that was supposed to solve everything. It didn’t. When told that she would need a modified radical mastectomy, Nash began exploring her various options for breast reconstruction. After meeting women who let her see and touch their reconstructed breasts, she chose the “free-flap” procedure, which utilizes abdominal skin and tissue and provides relatively normal-looking results but requires a considerable recovery period. Her description of successful reconstruction will make this account of surviving breast cancer especially comforting to many women. Nash has distilled her story into 13 short chapters, each of which is called a “lesson” and opens with a one-paragraph summary of the message she wants to pass along to others. These range from admonishments to trust your instincts (i.e., if you think you have cancer, keep pushing until you find out for sure), to reminders that courage takes unexpected forms, bad news needs sharing, caretakers are only human and may not behave as you need them to, and the culture’s pervasive images of beautiful bodies cannot be ignored. As Nash’s story ends, she is busy counseling other women who are facing mastectomies, showing them by example that “cancer can make you strong and courageous and peaceful and pleased.”

A survivor’s story that is both upbeat and candid.

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-7432-1979-1

Page Count: 160

Publisher: Scribner

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2001

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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