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Beauty in the Broken Places  By  cover art

Beauty in the Broken Places

By: Allison Pataki, Lee Woodruff, David Levy
Narrated by: Allison Pataki, Lee Woodruff - foreword, David Levy - epilogue
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Publisher's summary

The harrowing but ultimately life-affirming story of a young woman, pregnant with her first child, who is on a plane with her 30-year old physician husband when he has a near fatal stoke.

On the flight to their "babymoon" in Hawaii before their first child arrived, Allison Pataki's husband turned to her to ask if his eye looked strange, and then suddenly lost consciousness. After making an emergency landing, they discovered that Dave, a lifelong, healthy athlete and orthopedic surgery resident at Rush Medical School in Chicago, had suffered a rare, and often fatal, stroke.

Dave was one of the lucky ones though, and he survived, but the man who woke up from his coma was not the same man Allison had fallen in love with at Yale, the man she had given a four leaf clover to the night they got engaged with the caption: "May we always remember how lucky we are."

In this stirring, deeply personal memoir, Pataki recounts the challenging year that followed: Dave's turbulent road to recovery; the joyous birth of their daughter; the struggle and isolation of being a caretaker; the support from family and loved ones; and her own reexamination of their future with the understanding of how fragile life is and how lucky we are to have the chance to live it.

©2018 Allison Pataki (P)2018 Random House Audio

Critic reviews

"A beautifully woven, suspenseful love story with a stunning victory, reminding us of the resilience of the human spirit, and that anything is possible with a loving tribe." (Marcia Gay Harden, Academy Award-winning actress and author of The Seasons of My Mother)

"A best-selling historical novelist's account of how she survived the harrowing year following her young husband's unexpected stroke.... The strength of this end-of-innocence book lies in its demystification of the idea that strokes only occur in older people.... [A] heartfelt account of dedication and devotion." (Kirkus Reviews)

“Bold and commendable... A strength of this memoir is [Allison Pataki’s] scrupulous honesty.” (USA Today)