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What Made Maddy Run Audiobook

What Made Maddy Run: The Secret Struggles and Tragic Death of an All-American Teen

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Publisher's Summary

From noted ESPN commentator and journalist Kate Fagan, the heartbreaking and vital story of college athlete Madison Holleran, whose death by suicide rocked the University of Pennsylvania campus and whose life reveals with haunting detail and uncommon understanding the struggle of young people suffering from mental illness today.

If you scrolled through the Instagram feed of 19-year-old Maddy Holleran, you would see a perfect life: a freshman at an Ivy League school, recruited for the track team, who was also beautiful, popular, and fiercely intelligent. This was a girl who succeeded at everything she tried and who was only getting started.

But when Maddy began her long-awaited college career, her parents noticed something changed. Previously indefatigable Maddy became withdrawn, and her thoughts centered on how she could change her life. In spite of thousands of hours of practice and study, she contemplated transferring from the school that had once been her dream. When Maddy's dad, Jim, dropped her off for the first day of spring semester, she held him a second longer than usual. That would be the last time Jim would see his daughter.

What Made Maddy Run began as a piece that Kate Fagan, a columnist for espnW, wrote about Maddy's life. What started as a profile of a successful young athlete whose life ended in suicide became so much larger when Fagan started to hear from other college athletes also struggling with mental illness. This is the story of Maddy Holleran's life and her struggle with depression, which also reveals the mounting pressures young people, and college athletes in particular, face to be perfect, especially in an age of relentless connectivity and social media saturation.

©2017 Kate Fagan (P)2017 Hachette Audio

What the Critics Say

"It is impossible not to be affected by Holleran's heart-wrenching story. An appropriate (if difficult) read for current and future college athletes, their coaches, and parents." (Library Journal)

"A compassionate and frank look at depression and the social pressure faced by many college students as seen through the eyes of one young woman." (Kirkus)

"Fagan's book is well-researched and the message is timely and important." (Publishers Weekly)

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What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.7 (128 )
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4.4 (118 )
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Performance
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  •  
    S. Shewcraft Georgetown, KY 08-03-17
    S. Shewcraft Georgetown, KY 08-03-17 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Consider reading instead of listening to this book"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    It goes without saying that this is a tragic story. In trying to elucidate the factors contributing to this young woman's suicide, perhaps something positive will come of Madison's untimely death.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The exploration of the impact of social media on the generation that has not known a world without extreme connectivity. The destructiveness of unrealistic expectations of oneself that can be at least partially attributed to the bombardment by the "happiness" displayed on social media, and the exclusion of the reality of peoples lives is explored.

    Things have changed drastically since I went to college in the 80's. The author effectively contrasts the not so remote, yet extremely different experiences of going off to college. Ironically, there is so much more awareness of mental illness now than there was 30 years ago, and an armamentarium of psychotropic medications. It is perplexing that such extreme suffering is still so rampant.


    What didn’t you like about Kate Fagan’s performance?

    I'm sorry to say that the narration of this book was TERRIBLE! If a person spoke in the manner that Ms Fagan read aloud, it would be bizarre. It was extremely distracting with emphasis on words misplaced, and pauses in inappropriate places. I had to increase the speed to 1.5x, and it still seemed stilted and just wrong. How can this be when someone is reading one's own words? I had urges to give up the entire time I was listening, but I wanted to finish the story. It needs to be revised by an experienced narrator. Too late for me, but it would spare others.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    I don't know - it would depend on the reviews.


    Any additional comments?

    Again, I advise reading this instead of listening to it.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tiffany Liggett 09-22-17

    Tiffany Liggett

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    "Powerful, heartbreaking story"
    Would you consider the audio edition of What Made Maddy Run to be better than the print version?

    I felt connected with the narrator and sensed her connection with Maddy throughout the book.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karen Schwartz 09-20-17 Member Since 2015
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    "Eloquently powerful"

    Kate Fagan provides a powerful and important voice for our time. I am sure she made the Holleran family very proud. Thank you for sharing this important story about a beautiful soul.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pfin8 09-14-17
    Pfin8 09-14-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Beautiful tragic"

    My heart goes out to her family and her story was told in a way that honored her pain by Kate. The reading was fantastic. Well done!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Paul 09-07-17
    Paul 09-07-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Enlightening for me"

    Great book that shares the experiences of a young college athlete and the mental health struggles she fought.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    jennifer winn Ca USA 08-30-17
    jennifer winn Ca USA 08-30-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Good book"

    It was a book that needed to be written. We need to pay attention to mental illness more and more as years go on.
    It wasn't written with the rich vocabulary of an author such as C.S. Lewis (for example), but it made its point. So sad for this family. They will never ever get over this.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dennis Hinkamp Logan, Utah USA 08-29-17
    Dennis Hinkamp Logan, Utah USA 08-29-17 Member Since 2016

    offcenter

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    "Is this about Maddy or Kate Fagan ?"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Though I enjoyed it, I think you could have found out all you want about Maddy's story by reading the original ESPN story. To fill it out to a book it seem like there is a lot of filler about how the book was written and the author's own life story. Though interesting I felt like it was bait and switch.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Maddy though I'm not sure I ever got to know her as a real person; curious omission of any dating or love interests.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    yes but see my comments about the author taking over the story


    Was What Made Maddy Run worth the listening time?

    yes though I look at it more critically having been a college distance runner.


    Any additional comments?

    The story is good as it stands and maybe should be left a mystery. There seems to be too much search for causation that is really correlation with social media. Since there are billions of people who use social media but only a minuscule percentage commit suicide it is hard to make that leap of logic. Maddy's story is interesting and tragic but could be isolated. I blame it on our national obsession with finding an answer for every tragedy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    steve finkelstein 08-24-17 Member Since 2006
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    "Heartbreaking"

    I hope this book helps people deal with depression. It is very difficult when you think you're all alone. Trust me, there are a lot of people who have similar feelings. Knowing you are not alone is probably the best thing to realize. There is no shame in talking to other people about depression.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kristen Payne Golden, CO 08-23-17
    Kristen Payne Golden, CO 08-23-17 Member Since 2017

    Kristen Payne

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    "Gripping and Powerful"

    A story that will move everyone, but as a parent, one I think should be required reading for anyone with kids who is or may someday make that crucial transition from high school to college. Kate's narrative is outstanding.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sheila Patel 08-20-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Important"

    Glad I read it. Difficult to listen to, though. Awkward cadence. Interesting glimpse into college pressure, but more specifically into mental illness (anxiety and depression).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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