Sick: A Memoir

Porochista Khakpour. HarperPerennial, $15.99 trade paper (256p) ISBN 978-0-06-242873-8
Khakpour (The Last Illusion) incisively tells of living with a mystery illness that is eventually diagnosed as late-stage Lyme disease. From the time she was about five, she recalls feeling something was always “off” inside her body. From insomnia to hand tremors, her unusual symptoms were at first attributed to PTSD (Khakpour was born in Tehran in 1978; her family fled the country during revolution and settled in L.A.). Her parents believed her health would improve as she got older, but as an adult, her physical and psychiatric symptoms increased in severity and occurrence. Fainting, hallucinations, and dangerously high fevers limited her activity. With no definitive answer from the medical community, she developed an addiction to benzodiazepines for relief. Her boyfriends and colleagues function as caretakers as she moves from one healer to another (settling in rural Pennsylvania with a boyfriend, she delights that “we built a real domestic life for ourselves for the first time”). Khakpour writes honestly about her psychological struggle (“I spent most of my days feeling dead inside”) enduring a disease for which she’s treated, but for which there’s no cure. Her remarkable story is one of perseverance, survival, and hope. (June)
Reviewed on: 03/26/2018
Release date: 06/01/2018
Genre: Nonfiction
Ebook - 256 pages - 978-0-06-242872-1
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Audio book sample courtesy of HarperAudio
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