Autobiography of a Face

Lucy Grealy, Author
Lucy Grealy, Author Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) $19.95 (223p) ISBN 978-0-395-65780-5
Paperback - 256 pages - 978-0-06-056966-2
Prebound-Sewn - 978-0-613-12472-0
Hardcover - 224 pages - 978-0-413-77474-3
Open Ebook - 1 pages - 978-1-299-88669-8
Open Ebook - 223 pages - 978-0-547-52412-2
Paperback - 240 pages - 978-0-06-097673-6
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Diagnosed at age nine with Ewing's sarcoma, a cancer that severely disfigured her face, Grealy lost half her jaw, recovered after two and half years of chemotherapy and radiation, then underwent plastic surgery over the next 20 years to reconstruct her jaw. This harrowing, lyrical autobiographical memoir, which grew out of an award-winning article published in Harper's in 1993, is a striking meditation on the distorting effects of our culture's preoccupation with physical beauty. Extremely self-conscious and shy, Grealy endured insults and ostracism as a teenager in Spring Valley, N.Y. At Sarah Lawrence College in the mid-1980s, she discovered poetry as a vehicle for her pent-up emotions. During graduate school at the University of Iowa, she had a series of unsatisfying sexual affairs, hoping to prove she was lovable. No longer eligible for medical coverage, she moved to London to take advantage of Britain's socialized medicine, and underwent a 13-hour operation in Scotland. Grealy now lives in New York City. Her discovery that true beauty lies within makes this a wise and healing book. (Sept.)
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